I've had a short essay published in the June issue of Episcopal Life, dealing with the current issues. It is called A comprehensive view...
An additional thought came to mind early this morning, in relation to the civil rights movement. Now, let me say right up front that I make this analogy not because of "rights" but because of "civil." There is no "right" to be ordained -- though there is a right for the church to ordain those whom the church discerns are called. But back to the "civil" part. What we are talking about is how we can live as a civitas: a civilized society in which differences are comprehended under the Sign of Love, not Judgment.
Anyway, I was thinking about the matter of the back of the bus. To put it bluntly, I am willing to stay on the back of the Anglican Bus. I am willing to accept the reality that my ministrations as a priest would not be acceptable in parts of the Anglican Communion, even in some parts of the Episcopal Church. But as long as I get where I need to go, the back of the bus works for me; for I trust that the day will come when those in the front will be willing to say, at last, "Come up higher." I am willing to "take the lowest seat."
The problem at present is that I get the feeling that some in the front of the bus don't want me on the bus at all. They'd rather I walk. What I ask of them is a willingness to let me stay on the bus. I am not asking them to leave; I am only asking them to let me stay. Because I believe the bus is going where we all want to go.
In short, my compromise is to say, Let us live with this imperfect agreement on these matters of rites and ceremonies, while relying on the perfect unity that comes in, with, and through the blessing of Christ. Let Christ be the focus of our unity and our goal -- not our own treaties and contracts.
Tobias S Haller BSG