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Re: Who speaks for ECUSA? Have GC resolutions no legal consequences?

>         Nah, Mary, Louie's crowd are threating more punitive 
> action in 2003 if they don't get their way.
>         They seem to think they can impose their will by canon 
> law. I find this reliance on law rather than grace contrary to 
> the gospel preached by St. Paul, but some ot these folks don't 
> much care for Paul, particularly for his teachings on the right 
> use of human sexuality. "My way or the highway" seems to be 
> their motto.
>         Like you, I give thanks for the wisdom of Bishop Griswold. 
> Like Queen Elizabeth our first Supreme Governor, he seems reluctant 
> to make windows in men's souls.

When asked at their ordination, "Will you, in accordance with the canons
of this Church, obey your bishop and other ministers who may have
authority over you and your work?", few ordinands think they are being
coerced when they reply, "I am willing and ready to do so" (BCP 527).

Constitutions and canons are inherently 'coercive' in that they are not
optional once we commit to obeying them.  But since we do have the choice
of making that initial commitment, one does not usually think of them as
coercive, at least not when one has read them all and found the she or he
can live with them.  The rub comes when the constitution is amended or new
canons are passed.  One cannot know what new canons may come down the pike
at the time of saying "I am willing and ready to do so," and yet one
agrees in advance to be bound by them.

I too believe that grace is far more important than the law.  We should
not make those bishops who refuse to ordain women martyrs to the canons.  
The Righter trial demonstrated the unnecessary pain brought to the whole
body when we follow the route of presentments. (In Bishop Righter's case,
the presentment was brought not for disobeying a mandatory canon, but for
disobeying a resolution that was explicitly 'recommendatory.')

I supported A045 ( http://www.ecusa.anglican.org/resolutions/a045fin.html)
precisely because it uses mediation rather than presentment.  Canons
III.8.1, III.16.1(d), do not require anyone to ordain women who cannot in
conscience do so.  Bishop Montgomery and many others have demonstrated
that it is possible to enable ministries of ordained women without being
the bishop who ordains them.

Please keep the Presiding Bishop and Executive Council in your prayers as
we meet February 5-8 to establish the Task Force required by A045. May the
Task Force and the three dioceses mirror God's grace by finding an irenic,
nonjudicial way for us to live through the current conflict.

Lutibelle/Louie, Sinner Saved by Grace, Amazing Still

Louie Crew, 377 S. Harrison St., #12D, East Orange, NJ 07018-1225
http://newark.rutgers.edu/~lcrew   973-395-1068
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