General Convention 2006

Send out your light and your truth; let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling. Then I will go to the altar of God, and I will praise you . . . Psalm 43:3-4

The General Convention of the Episcopal Church
met in Columbus, Ohio from June 11-21, 2006.
This blog offers a view of the convention and beyond from the perspective of Lydia Evans, a two-time lay deputy from the Diocese of South Carolina.
Visit the links found below for additional resources
as well as pre- and post-convention coverage.
Thank you for remembering the convention deputies and their families in your prayers. For further resources, visit my webpages.
For all posts from the month of June, click here.
For all posts from the month of July, click here.


What I Said on the Sunday After the General Convention in 2003

It's interesting to look back at where we were in August of 2003. I ran across this statement on the St. Philip's website which I shared on the Sunday following the last General Convention.

Here's what I said.

The General Convention in Minneapolis was full of irony. About a week before I left, I was praying, and the Holy Spirit gave me a scripture: Isaiah 43:19, and I told a few of you about it. It says, "Behold, I am doing a new thing," and it promises us a way in the wilderness, and water in the desert. And I took great comfort in that scripture...

The incredible irony is that the folks at Claiming the Blessing, the lobby for full inclusion of homosexuals in the Church, use that same scripture to justify their agenda. It just goes to show you that interpretation is everything.

But GOD IS GOOD and He kept His promise to me in Minneapolis: He allowed the complete and total heresy that exists in the Church to be revealed in new and different ways than in past conventions. As we testified at hearings on same-sex blessings and the confirmation of Gene Robinson, we heard one story after another--from clergy detailing illegal blessings that they had conducted in their dioceses with the support of their bishop to blessings that many of them had participated in, and the difference it had made in the lives of them and of their partners....A priest from the Diocese of Maryland read a statement from their youth presence in support of the development of rites for inclusion in the prayer book. Shame on those in the Diocese of Maryland for allowing their youth to reflect their depraved lifestyles. Never before had we heard tales like these. Peter Lee, the bishop of the Diocese of Virginia, stated last Thursday morning and I quote, "The Diocese of Virginia continues to affirm its policy that the normative context for sexual intimacy is lifelong, monogamous marriage." And then we watched as their entire deputation voted in favor of local option same-gender blessings.

He allowed the Presiding Bishop to reach new heights of pluralism. We had some of the weirdest worship ever. Strange new age instruments, the noticeable absence of the word "Jesus." Where was the confession, the penitent language? But the Lord provided an alternative in a wonderful Forward in Faith worship service held by orthodox bishops at the Presbyterian Church down the street. Inspiring hymns, great sermons, and a focus on the Truth. A much better way to start the day.

Everyday during the lunch recess, we'd head to the Lutheran Church across the street from the convention center where the American Anglican Council had set up their headquarters. They had brought in a chef to prepare a light lunch for us each day, and Doug McGlynn from the Diocese of Pittsburgh would give us a great meditation. John Guernsey would give us a legislative briefing. The AAC had volunteers who would sit in on all 24 committee meetings in the early mornings, and then compile updates on the status of all resolutions. Martyn Minns from Truro Church would give us further guidance on what might come up on the house floor in the afternoon. There were around 300 resolutions that required action during the 10 legislative days. The AAC helped organize all of the hearing testimony, and they were available to help us with anything we needed. But the greatest thing they did was to keep us shored up during the really difficult times. They kept us focused, and reminded us that the primates were behind us. And they continue to work on our behalf by organizing an October meeting in Plano, Texas, to plan for the future.

Because although the General Convention managed to turn the Changeless Gospel into the Ever-Changing Gospel, we are not defeated. It is they who have abandoned the Church. We will be fine.

Because God is doing a new thing, and although I don't have all the details, I know it will be according to His plan.

As John Burwell would say, "It is Day Five of the new Church," and the Lord will provide for us as we continue to share His Changeless Gospel at St. Philip's Church in the Diocese of South Carolina!


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