"Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company." Mark Twain

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Manner of Life

I have decided that when the Episcopal Church speaks of certain "manners of life" which may upset the rest of the communion they have opened the door for a good bit of conversation. In an effort to engage this conversation I am proposing a list of "manners of life" that do not live up to standards that are currently being set. Let me begin with the environment.

1.) 1998 Lambeth 1.8 Creation

As you can read below the 1998 Lambeth meeting passed a resolution that takes the destruction of the environment seriously. Therefor I propose that anyone currently in the House of Bishops of in an election for Bishop should have to meet certain standards of environmental sustainability to be considered appropriate candidates. Here is a list of Manners of Life that would be unacceptable: 1.) Driving an SUV or any car that does not get at least 40MPG on the Highway. 2.)Anyone who has not switched to compact fluorescent bulbs. (yes I know that it may be intrusive to come into peoples homes and see what bulbs they are using but the communion is at stake we all have to make sacrifices.) 3.) Any one who has not switched to low flow toilets and showers. 4.)Anyone shopping at Wal Mart. The most unsustainable company on the planet. this is a manner of life I find unacceptable and that destroys the homes and lives of our brothers and sisters in the global south. Any person who does these things has a manner of life that should not be acceptable to the wider communion.

2.)1998 Lambeth 1.4 War
It is pretty clear from Resolution I.4
A Faithful Response to Aggression and War
This Conference:
(a) abhors the evil of war;
(b) repudiates and condemns the use of violence for settling religious, economic, cultural or political disputes;
(c) encourages the use of peacekeeping forces to prevent or forestall the escalation of conflicts, and to assist in their resolution;
(d) repudiates and condemns the use of terrorism;
(e) decries the production and proliferation of arms;
(f) commits its members to prayer, mediation, and any active, non-violent means we can employ to end current conflicts and wars and to prevent others; and
(g) urges the nations represented by our Churches and all those on whom we have any influence whatsoever to join us in this endeavour.
1.)Any one who does not actively work and use any, active non-violent means to end war does not have a manner of life worthy of being a bishop. 2.) Anyone who may be invested in a company that profits from the "production and proliferation of arms" is unsuitable and causes untold harm to our brothers and sisters in the global south.
3.)1998 Lambeth 1.15 International Debt and Economic Justice
This resolution has so many ways in which to disqualify someones manner of life. I will just point out that Jesus talks about money more than any other topic in his parables and so maybe we should be talking about it too. 1.) Any person who cannot show a consistent pattern of tithing (at a minimum) does not have a manner of life consistent with the episcopacy. 2.) Anyone who has is not giving .7% of their income to the MDG's is also out. 3.)In fact I think a complete financial analysis of every candidate for Bishop is in order to make sure that they are spending their money in accordance with Biblical principals and Lambeth Resolutions. This report should be made public knowledge and there should be an opportunity for the laity to respond.
In fact I think when Jesus said in Matthew "where your treasure is there your heart will be also" he gave us the best possible way to figure out what a persons "manner of life" is. We should begin to require a complete financial report of each Bishop and candidate for Bishop. Let's not allow the Episcopacy to hide their manner of life behind their checkbooks.
Anyway this should just about exclude everyone from the possibility of being a bishop and those who make it through this process obviously have not have enough life experience to be effective shepherds to the flock so they are out too. Have a great day. Jeremy+

1 comment:

"Ms. Cornelius" said...

Rock, on, Dude!

But wait! You don't think they MEANT all that stuff, do you?

seriously, though, It's so much easier to condemn individual actions rather than societal policies.