Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A denomination that's lost its soul

When I point out that the Episcopal Church has taken a radical pro-abortion position, some of folks call me names. But Stand Firm just posted a link to Resolution NAC 017, adopted by the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church on January 9, 2006:

It must also be noted that Council was in error in its 1978 statement that RCAR “appears to advocate an unconditional right to abortion” and is thus inconsistent with this Church’s position. This Church does advocate an unconditional legal right to abortion, as expressed in its oft-repeated “unequivocal opposition” to legislative abridgement of that right; the RCAR/RCRC is a coalition of faith communities that, among other things, seeks to preserve that legal right. In addition, although different faith communities may express their positions in different ways, all members of the coalition share this Church’s further position that the decision to terminate a pregnancy should be made according to individual conscience and should not be made lightly or for frivolous reasons.

There is so much wrong in this, it is hard to know where to start.
  • The Council disowns its own 1978 (barely a generation old) observation that the abortion group RCAR is too extreme to be consistent with church teaching. Now, RCAR is church teaching. Only an organization which has lost its core values can make such sweeping changes in so short a time.
  • Episcopalian leadership used to leave much to local congregations and regional dioceses. Now, moral teaching can be dictated by a few old bureaucrats around the buffet on one of their subsidized vacations. (This resolution was passed at a meeting in Iowa - but now they fly to places like Ecuador on our dime). Only an organization that has lost its vision of shared leadership can allow leadership by a small elite.
  • If abortion shouldn't be for "light or frivolous" cases, why shouldn't people be able to ban the use of abortion for such cases? And why is there no admission that the vast majority of abortions continue to be a crude, reactive form of "birth control" - exactly the kind of "frivolous" abortion that the church ought to condemn? Only an organization that has lost its core appeal to Scripture, tradition and reason could accept such a garbled and bizarre resolution as moral teaching.
  • The Episcopal Church continues to make puffy statements about "social justice" and asserting that we are all responsible for one another in every way. But on reproduction, God's fundamental testimony to our communal life, TEC opts for radical individualism. Only an organization that has lost its sanity can do this.

The Episcopal Church has lost so much, so quickly. No finger pointing - all of us share in its vanity. All of us who ever said, "We're more intellectual than those other churches." All of us who liked the tons of available money. All of us who liked the dress-up, titles and pretty things of church. We liked it all too much, and now God is taking it all away. May He have mercy upon us - especially those who don't see the problem.

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