August 3, 2003

From figueroa Sun Aug 3 23:51:23 2003
Subject: General Convention Report 8/3
To: philemon
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2003 23:51:23 -0400 (EDT)

Dear faithful AAC members and friends and guests,

Report from the General Convention at Minneapolis

Brothers and sisters,

It went badly badly today.

Jeff Brown and I attended the Forward In Faith Eucharist at 7:00 a.m. and later attended the General Convention Eucharist where the preacher, The Rt. Rev. Josiah Idowu-Fearon, Bishop of Kaduna, Nigera preached an extraordinary sermon where he reiterated the consequences of breaking the unity of the church. Applause following the sermon was weak and short.

At the legislative session that started at 2:30 P.M., the AAC's well organized effort to generate and prepare speakers on the "con" side of the Gene Robinson consecration and ordination generated a long line of speakers, most of whom did not get a chance to speak before debate was cut off (45 minutes). However, the "pro" side's line was approximately three times as long. It was a sad preview of the vote that resulted in 60% of the clergy deputations voting in favor of consent and 58% of the lay deputations voting in favor. In the Southern Ohio deputation, I cast the only NO vote.

The consent issue now goes to the House of Bishops that is supposed to take up the matter tomorrow. Pray for all of the bishops. It is now in their hands.

Following the session, that was adjourned immediately following the announcement of the results, I was fortunate enough to be interviewed by the local NBC affiliate KARE. I got about 20 seconds of air time (not bad).

Please understand that if this passes the House of Bishops, the Episcopal Church will be breaking faith with the Anglican Communion and our many ecumenical partners (not to mention God and the universal church). The exact shape of the future that follows is very murky, but it will never be the same.

Many more details can be found at official and unofficial news sources. See this afternoon's ENS report by David Skidmore at:

All for now.

Andy Figueroa

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