The Episcopal Church: Marking a Milestone, Moving Foward

An effective op-ed by The Episcopal Church in the
NY Times offers an appealing invitation.
(After posting I received the link for the ad mentioned below.)

The Episcopal Church extends an invitation to all who are seeking Christian faith that honors and engages the Bible, the tradition of the Church, and God-given reason in a very well-written paid message that appears in the Saturday op-ed page of the New York Times.

If you have access to the print edition of the Times, the narrative Marking A Milestone, Moving Forward is worth reading. Unfortunately, I am unable to locate it online and it’s not accessible to readers of the electronic edition. (If someone knows where it resides online, let me know.)

It’s a re-counting of the history of the church complemented by a cogent presentation of the ethos of this faith community written in an engaging style. In a low-key it acknowledges the conflict currently tearing at this faith community, but never the less, upholds the historic strengths of the church and offers an invitation to find out for yourself.

This proactive message speaks not only to seekers who may respond to the church, it also addresses Episcopalians who are undoubtedly dismayed with the headlines the church has received the past several months. A clear statement such as this must come as a refreshing shower. Moreover, it is authentic. This message reflects the church at its best

The conversational tone, openness and respect for tradition will not resonate with those whose minds are already made up. But it will speak to others who, perhaps, will find the invitation compelling enough to act upon. But whether this message results in an influx of seekers or not, it is important. It is the church telling its own story, honestly and openly. This is as it should be.

This church, as is true of all mainline denominations, is much more than the sum of the conflicts that make headlines. It is a grand tradition of Christian worship, justice and compassion, and telling its story in this way is very constructive. Episcopalians should greet each other at worship tomorrow with a smile. This communication to the world is the right thing to do.

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