|RE: Surgical overload|
|Written by Tom Eggebeen|
|Saturday, 23 June 2012 11:09|
Over all the years when "fidelity and chastity" governed the church, I rarely, if ever, heard of progressive threatening to leave the church. But let the wind shift, a bit, and suddenly all kinds of folks lift high the threat of departure.
A little study reveals that departure has always been a part of the program for many. I've followed the Presbytery Layman for years, and I have always suspected their intent - to find reason to leave. In some bizarre accident of Presbyterian DNA, leaving is always the way forward. Connect this to many of our "Southern" friends, and the compromises made to welcome them into the merger, and we have the perfect storm, so to speak.
Presbyterians have been leaving one another since the get-go. Have we accomplished anything? Hardly. But it's in our blood; seemingly, we can't help it.
To shed tears is normal, but hardly of value. To study the matter further is akin to folks saying that we need to study further this matter of women's ordination or slavery or whatever other social patterns upset folks in the pew.
I lament all of this, of course, and I salute the faithfulness of tens of thousands of progressive Presbyterians who stay the course, love the church, struggle to open, and now keep open, the doors of ordination, and now establish the right of pastors to officiate at gay marriages in such states wherein it's allowed.
I cannot, however, given the nature of our story, or the history of the last 50 years, imagine a scenario wherein the "uncomfortable" will decide to stay. We all have definitions of the church, and we're at a point when competing definitions have become, or so it seems, mutually exclusive; after all, the wall can't be both pink and green at the same time.
We're only doing what we've done throughout our history - we leave in hopes of finding peace, unity and theological purity. Will it work this time?
Los Angeles, CA