An emerging church pastor & pal here in town posted the following quote on Facebook:
The breakthroughs in the renewal and expansion of the Christian movement always occur on the fringe and never at the center of ecclesiastical power. - Paul Pierson (Pierson is the quoted author, not my local friend)
As the Episcopal Church goes full speed ahead into the iceberg of its General Convention, as every indicator of this denomination's behavior points toward decline and death, this quote is very comforting.
It is good to be on the fringe of a church whose central power is incapable of renewed, expansive life in Christ. "Ecclesiastical" has come to mean "churchy, clergy-focused, robes, buildings, rules, jargon, etc." when the Greek word for church, ekklesia, means PEOPLE called together by God. People who will live on the fringe of "the world" in anticipation of "new heavens and a new earth."
God grant us a place on the fringe.