Anti-gay Episcopalians, int'l. Anglicans warn Church & Communion: change or face schism
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Archbishop Datuk Yong Ping Chung, primate of South East Asia, said, "We will stand with you as long as you remain faithful, biblical, evangelical and orthodox." Tensions between the Episcopal Church and Anglican churches in the developing world, and within the American church itself, have simmered for years over issues like the ordination of women and the interpretation of Scripture. But for many conservatives, the last straw came when the Episcopal Church consecrated the Rev. V. Gene Robinson, an openly gay man, as bishop of New Hampshire in 2003. To avoid a split in the global communion, an Anglican commission issued a report in October 2004 urging the Episcopal Church to apologize for creating division by its consecration of Mr. Robinson. But the church did not renounce its actions, and impatience with it is boiling over, conservatives said. "There's no way for these two conflicted faiths to live under the same roof," said the Right Rev. Robert W. Duncan, bishop of the Pittsburgh Diocese and the moderator of the Anglican Communion Network, a group of 10 dissident dioceses in the Episcopal Church. The network organized the conference in Pittsburgh. An Episcopal Church U.S.A. spokeswoman, the Rev. Jan Nunley, said the tensions voiced at the Pittsburgh conference were not new. Ms. Nunley added: "We're trying not to get ahead of events. We sit, watch and trust God, and hope for the spirit of reconciliation." Though it has lost members and even congregations in the past over issues like the ordination of women, the Episcopal Church has managed to stay together because of the autonomy it gives dioceses. "We basically have a long history of working things out," said Lionel E. Deimel, president of Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh, who also attended the conference but did not support its views. "But this is the most serious thing to happen to the Episcopal Church, and it has mobilized people on both sides." At the convention in Columbus, the church is expected to issue a response to the October 2004 report. In the meantime, conservative congregations throughout the country have moved to leave the Episcopal Church and place themselves under the guidance of foreign Anglican bishops.To read the entire, original article click here