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Louie Crew
377 S. Harrison Street, 12D
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Phone: 973-395-1068 h


lcrew@andromeda.rutgers.edu

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Louie & Ernest Clay-Crew
Married February 2, 1974


12/21/1974
 
8/17/2006



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New Bishop of SW Florida capitulates to bullies and cancels a planned visit of Bishop Robinson to St. Boniface in Sarasota


  • To: "Bishops-Deputies Discussion" <bishopsdeputies@hobd.org>
  • Subject: New Bishop of SW Florida capitulates to bullies and cancels a planned visit of Bishop Robinson to St. Boniface in Sarasota
  • From: Louie Crew <lcrew@ANDROMEDA.RUTGERS.EDU>
  • Date: Wed, 14 Nov 2007 18:54:24 -0500

For weeks this announcement has circulated in a flier:

Bishop Robinson to be
2008 Boniface Speaker

Saint Boniface Episcopal Church, Sarasota, is
pleased to announce that the Rt. Rev. V. Gene
Robinson, Bishop of New Hampshire has accepted
the invitation to be our guest and speaker January
16-20, 2008. We are especially grateful to
Assistant Rector Wes Wasdyke for helping invite
Bishop Robinson. Wes is canonically resident in
the Diocese of New Hampshire where he served
the church and medical communities for many
years.

Bishop Robinson is an astute speaker and spiritual leader with a passion
for shared ministry and well known for his pastoral support of clergy and
congregations in New Hampshire. While he is the focus of much attention
in the Anglican Communion, his visit to us is a personal one where he will
be able to share his own journey of faith and encourage each of us in ours.
As is always the case in the visit of a bishop from another jurisdiction,
The
Rt. Rev. Dabney Smith, Bishop of Southwest Florida, was consulted, and
has given permission for Bishop Robinson to be our speaker in residence.
Bishop Smith has encouraged us by describing this visit as an important
part of the listening process which is key to the Windsor and Lambeth
recommendations for the Anglican Communion.

The Boniface Speaker series was created to bring the brightest and best in
religion to this parish and community. Bishop Robinson will speak at a
community wide forum Thursday evening January 17, a clergy study
morning Friday January 18, and at the parish services and forum Sunday
January 20. Saint Boniface Church is at 5615 Midnight Pass Road on Siesta
Key in Sarasota.

The Rev. Canon Edward M. Copland, Rector www.boniface.

----------------

The flier was replaced today after Bishop Dabney Smith asked Bishop Robinson
to decline the parish's invitation,  with this new memo:

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

to Boniface Parish Leaders, and other interested friends

re Cancellation of planned visit of Bishop Robinson

from Ted Copland

Bishop Dabney Smith just called to tell me that he has contacted
Bishop Gene Robinson again and asked him to decline the invitation
to speak here in January. Bishop Smith said he took this action
because of all the heat he is getting. Previously Bishop Smith had
given his permission for the visit and said it was not a problem for
him although he anticipated a reaction. He told me that it has been
more of a reaction than he anticipated. Bishop Robinson is on
sabbatical and is out of the country (he was in New Zealand when
they talked). I anticipate that we will hear from his office in New
Hampshire to confirm this.

Many people will be disappointed about this but we can choose to
see this as an opportunity to continue the conversation about what it
means to be the Episcopal Church in the 21st century. I believe it
may be important for Bishop Smith to hear from people who
thought that Bishop Robinson~Rs visit would have furthered the
conversation called for throughout the Anglican Communion.

Ted Copland

------------------------------

You know opposition is losing when opposition resorts to the tyranny of
ideas, afraid to allow anyone even to listen to a point of view not approved
by the one in power.

This country was built on strong advocacy for the right -- even the
obligation -- of persons to expose themselves to all points of view before
holding a point of view themselves.

Probably Bishop Smith is thoroughly within his rights as a bishop to cancel
any presentation if doing so helps him save his skin.  I hope that he can
sleep in that skin.

When you want to know why most young people don't give the church the time
of day, you need look no farther. Bishop Smith's cowardice gives me the
creeps and makes me embarrassed to be an Episcopalian.

Louie Crew, Ph.D., D.D., D.D., D.H.L.
Chair of the Newark deputation 

On May 2, 2015, I asked Bishop Smith for any comment I might share about this 2007 decision. He responded:

Thank you. Later, of course, with a change in climate, he did accept the invitation and spoke at St. Boniface. Thank you for your prayers!

The Rt. Rev. Dabney T. Smith
Bishop
The Diocese of Southwest Florida
941-556-0315




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