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Update: Episcopal Church doubles-down on bad, plays dumb

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On February 2nd,  I reported on a resolution that was passed in the Washington D.C. diocese of the Episcopal Church (ECUSA). The resolution calls for all future updates to the Book of Common Prayer (the liturgies) “to avoid the use of gendered pronouns for God.”

The news of the passage of the resolution was widely received with dismay, and a plethora of criticisms toward ECUSA have followed.

 Now, the Episcopal Church has responded via:

Following the widespread outrage which followed the adoption of the resolution, the church has pivoted its tactic of argumentation for its stance, toward a focus on the limits of language itself and the desire to expand the language used to describe God. This is evident in the responses from both the author of the resolution and from the Episcopal News Service (ENS).

The author’s response

The Rev. Alex Dyer of St. Thomas’ Parish Episcopal Church in Washington D.C. authored the resolution, entitled “On the Gendered Language for God.”  He said, “The resolution asks us to draw on multiple images of God… masculine, feminine and wide diversity.”

Rev. Dyer then noted the existence of two creation stories in Genesis; the first in Chapter 1 and the second in Chapter 2. However, regarding the second creation story (from Chapter 2), Dyer incorrectly stated:

“And I’m sure that you also know too that there is another Genesis story in Chapter 2, uh, where God creates Adam, uh, and then He creates a helper, and is uh, Eve isn’t identified [by] gender until actually Chapter 3.”

In response to Rev. Dyer’s erroneous claim (which I will briefly address below), Carlson asked the reverend if he thought that Eve might not have been a woman.

To this, Rev. Dyer responded, “Uh, well, you know, I wasn’t there.”

(I suppose any congregants watching the interview were expected to hold their nose and pretend that all is well, regardless of the reverend’s inability to utter a single declarative sentence regarding Eve’s womanhood in the face of the thousands of years of Scriptural assertion regarding the matter.)

When asked by Carlson whether there was any evidence to suggest that Eve was not a woman, Dyer responded with obfuscation:

“Uh, I think that the important thing to gather away is that… the important thing is that God is beyond gender, and I think when we’re talking about God we are using language. And language limits us, right? And we are talking about something that is limitless – God – that we’re trying to get our heads around. Uh, but yet language is all we have in order to do that. So, in a sense, we insist on, want to limit the language that we use.”

Concerning Rev. Dyer’s claim regarding Chapter 2 of the Book of Genesis – that Eve’s gender is not identified until Chapter 3 – one need only to open their Bible to find the glaring error of the reverend’s words.

See Genesis Chapter 2, verses 22-24:

22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib[a] he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

23 The man said,

“This is now bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called ‘woman,’
for she was taken out of man.”

24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

Biblical translations correctly identifying Eve as “woman” in Chapter 2 of the Book of Genesis include, but are not limited to, the King James Bible, English Standard Version Bible, International Standard Version Bible, JPS Tanakh 1917, Webster’s Bible Translation, Young’s Literal Translation, and so on… (I have not come across a contradictory translation.)

Tucker Carlson, who (like myself) was baptized into and raised in the Episcopal Church, pressed Rev. Dyer about ECUSA’s embrace of “any fashionable, left-wing social cause,” and the dire hemorrhaging in the church’s membership numbers, positing, “I wonder if embracing fashionable left-wing politics has been bad for the church.”

To this, the Rev. Alex Dyer asserted that politics had nothing to do with the troubles of the Episcopal Church, nor his personal motivations for seeking to “avoid” Biblically-sourced gender designations for God.

According to numbers provided by the Episcopal Church, the membership numbers for Dyer’s own church, St. Thomas, have imploded, shrinking 50% in just the last 5 years.

St. Thomas describes itself as a “progressive” (socialist) church. Included on the church’s website is a link to an open public workshop, “Thirsting for Justice,” which features an image of clenched fists against a red background. Also linked on St. Thomas’s website is a portal where members of the public may purchase #faithpalm Jesus products. These products include mugs, t-shirts, banners and yard signs, etc., bearing slogans such as, “Yes, science is real” (whatever that means).

You can watch the entire Tucker Carlson interview of the Rev. Alex Dyer here.

The Episcopal News Service’s response –

Knowing well the Episcopal church’s (remaining) audience, the ENS article almost immediately informed its readers that “the call for more inclusive language in the prayer book… drew national attention, especially from conservative-leaning critics” (emphasis mine), listing Breitbart and The Blaze as examples.

Washington D.C. Bishop Mariann Budde described three critical emails she received, which she described as “vitriolic.” The emails purportedly described the D.C. diocese “as aligned with Satan and at war with God.”

While neither Bishop Budde nor ENS offered any Scriptural rebuttals to the alleged claims found within the “three emails,” Bishop Budde insisted, “It’s clear they didn’t read the resolution.”

No recognition was provided for those of us who did read the resolution (which I also published in my February 2nd article, and to which I provided the direct link) and who found the resolution to be theologically amoral, abhorrent, and perilous.

Ignoring the text of the resolution, which calls for all revisions to the Book of Common Prayer “to avoid the use of gendered pronouns for God,” the resolution, insisted Budde, “doesn’t mandate the elimination of gender-specific references to God… despite what some reports suggest.”

In the D.C. diocese’s convention materials, a more radical version of the resolution was offered in amendment form. It reads:

“Resolved, the House of ____________ concurring, that the 79th General Convention direct the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music, as it considers revision of the Book of Common Prayer, to eliminate, when possible, all gendered references to God and to replace them with gender-neutral language, and if necessary, to alternate gendered titles when referring to God.” (emphasis mine)

But pay no attention to the devil behind the curtain.

For decades, stripping the Word of its masculine references to God has been a concerted effort for a growing segment ECUSA, beginning with the 1973 publication of “Beyond God the Father: Toward a Philosophy of Women’s Liberation.”

In fact, in 1997, the Episcopal Church published a supplement to the Book of Common Prayer, entitled “Enriching Our Worship.” As explained by one Episcopal priest, Father Christopher Brown, “The new liturgies in this book represent a moderate but systematic effort to adjust the use of gender in liturgical language… The new liturgies assiduously avoid the masculine pronoun in referring to God.”

“Enriching Our Worship” provides us with a prudent reminder that the Book of Common Prayer (BOC) is not comprised of Church-created prayers alone. It also disproves Budde’s and Dyer’s insinuation that the focus of ECUSA’s language resolution is not about taking away from the Word of God, but about adding to it.

For example, contained in both the Book of Common Prayer and (in altered form) in “Enriching Our Worship” is a portion of Psalm 95 (verses 1-7).

In the Bible, Psalm 95:1-7 reads:

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.

For the Lord is the great God,
the great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth,
and the mountain peaks belong to him.
The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.

Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;
for he is our God
and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care.

Yet, in “Enriching Our Worship” (pages 21-22) all gendered references to God have been removed from His Word as written in Psalm 95.

The defense of the church’s resolution then shifts to the subject semantics, to language itself, which followed the very same talking points espoused by the Rev. Dyer in his appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight.

The article also included a juvenile-like attempt at validation via the equally reprehensible actions of other churches.

But, but, but… The Swedish Church did it too…

(It is also worth noting that ENS grossly misrepresented the Catholic Catechism to support the pronoun-butchering of the Episcopal liturgies. The most successful deceivers employ half-truths.)

You can read the article here.

Abject failure

The Episcopal Church has doubled-down on blasphemy, employing ethically abhorrent PR tactics to distract from her flagrant, outward rape of God’s Word as He, Himself, gifted to us.  The church has failed to perform her duties as a church, as the bride.

I implore every Christian – leaders, laity, etc. – to revisit the splendor of God’s choice to reveal himself, through His Word, as the Father.

If the church continues on her present path – through the wide gate (Matt. 7:13-14) – we can no longer be expected to call her a “church”; for, she will have chosen the designation of a pagan tax collector (Matt. 18:15-17).

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Culture and Religion

Justin Trudeau’s blackface and the world the left is trying to create

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Justin Trudeaus blackface and the world the left is trying to create

There’s a reason we’re only hearing now about progressive superhero Justin Trudeau’s blackface incident. The Prime Minister of Canada has been in the public eye for some time, but when he first entered politics, the progressive charge he’s trying to lead hadn’t really picked up the steam it has today. The people weren’t “woke” enough to go after anything and everything from the past that are condemned today.

Now, we’re ready. Any monuments of people from the past who participated in slavery must be taken down and erased. Any mascots that could offend someone are removed and replaced by politically correct variations. And anyone who wore “blackface” in their past, even at times when people were more sane about the use of makeup to pretend to be someone else, must be racists.

They must be. Otherwise, every element of the left’s current worldview is brought into question.

But Trudeau us unlikely to face the same backlash that a conservative in the same situation would face. That’s the narrative that’s quietly being spread – progressives get a pass while conservatives must be prosecuted in the court of public opinion. This is why Virginia Governor Ralph Northam is still in power. It’s why nothing is going to happen to Trudeau the way it would happen if a conservative were caught doing the same thing 18 years ago.

Progressives aren’t trying to create a world that is more understanding of our differences, despite their proclamations otherwise. They’re trying to create a world in which their sensibilities are condemning when a conservative is in the hot seat but forgiving when it’s a progressive facing the same situations. They want to take away guns, as long as they’re given a pass to keep their own firearms. They say words are violence, then they use their own words to attack others while feeling justified in their heinous speech.

It’s a world in with a group proclaiming to be anti-fascist uses their own variation of personal fascism and intimidation to quash the voices of anyone on the right… or even the center.

The leftist’s dream society of socialism and open borders crumbles when the rules they want applied to others are applied to them. This is why Bernie Sanders and other progressive leaders scream about socialism while elevating their own wealthy status through capitalism.

We live in a world that is becoming increasingly opposed to the truth. Even churches are ignoring sound doctrine, replacing the teachings of the Bible with anecdotes to promote their self-help agenda.

When an organization that tries to prevent as many women as possible from becoming a parent can call itself Planned Parenthood, we see where society is heading. When its supporters call opposition to their cause hateful bigots while ignoring the organization’s founder was a self-proclaimed hateful bigot, we know we’re heading in the the wrong direction.

It permeates across all aspects of American society and the leftist’s approach to promoting their agenda. They change words to have different meanings. Today, they don’t want a differentiation between legal and illegal immigrants. They want all of us classified as immigrants so they can say President Trump’s policies are anti-immigrant instead of the reality that his policies work against illegal immigration.

All of this circles back around to the reality that Justin Trudeau will not face the same consequences for his “insensitive” portrayal 18 years ago that a conservative would. Our emerging post-truth society allows the left to see what they want to see.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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Culture and Religion

Shame: Teens recorded fatal knifing of Khaseen Morris instead of helping him

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Shame Teens recorded fatal knifing of Khaseen Morris instead of helping him

Dozens of Long Island teenagers whipped out their phones an recorded the stabbing of one of their classmates instead of helping him, local police have reported.

Khaseen Morris, 16, was stabbed once in the chest while onlookers recorded the attack. The Oceanside High School senior had supposedly walked a girl home from a party the nigh before and was sought by the girl’s ex-boyfriend. Reports indicate somewhere between 50-70 teens witnessed the attack with many of them recording it instead of intervening.

Morris was transported to a local hospital where he died.

Opinion

Kids do stupid things. They always have. But this recent trend of recording events rather than acting on them stems from a cultural and spiritual disregard for humanity. Events such as these happen outside of reach once mobile devices become the go-to. The response is not to participate or help. It’s to record it. Many teens can’t imagine being at an “event” without having digital record of it occurring.

This shift in mentality is isolated to those who have grown up separated from the real world by the devices they carry constantly. They might forget their keys or wallet when going somewhere, but they never forget their phones. These devices have become a part of us, very much like a technological extension similar to the cyborg technology found in science fiction. But this is willful. Nobody is forced to carry their phones everywhere. We do it willingly.

What does that say about society when someone is murdered right in front of dozens of people whose first reaction is to start recording the attack? How have Americans become so lost that the notion of helping our fellow men, women, and children is an instinct that has been superseded by the need for something to share with friends on social media? It’s sickening.

These kids and their parents should be ashamed.

Quote

“Kids stood there and didn’t help Khaseen. They’d rather video. They videoed his death instead of helping him.” – Detective Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick

Final Thoughts

Much of American society has become observers, recorders, and posters instead of doers. Young people in particular have grown up with faster reactions to their smartphones than to the world around them. This must change.

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Culture and Religion

Thoughts and prayers are exactly what we need

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Thoughts and prayers are exactly what we need

One of the more disturbing developments in recent years is the growing attacks on thoughts and prayers in the wake of tragedy. Not only are more and more shouting that thoughts and prayers are “not enough” in the wake of tragedy. Many are also doubling-down on the idea by calling thoughts and prayers an excuse to do nothing.

This assertion not only strikes me as wrong-hearted but fundamentally in ignorance of two honest observations.

Firstly, those who attack thoughts and prayers ignore the necessity to grieve and the resolve that arises in the hearts of those who mourn.

Offering thoughts and prayers provides a message of unity and compassion. It’s a unified message that the victims of tragedy do not stand alone. The time where we offer thoughts and prayers is a time where we can set aside our petty differences and unite in mourning.

Further, it has often been my observation that those who offer heartfelt and fervent thoughts and prayers are the ones which arise from their knees, wipe the tears from their eyes, and provide the most energetic actions towards the support of others.

Mocking thoughts and prayers is mocking the humanity of those who are overcome with the grief of a heart-rending tragedy. It’s to mock the natural response of caring, faithful citizens. Quite honestly, it boils my blood that anyone would mock or belittle a quiet, tearful prayer, a lit candle in the window, or messages on social media that are, for once, positive, supportive, and contemplative.

Secondly, the attitude of mocking the thoughtful and prayerful is yet another example of the degradation of what holds us together as a society. It is a manifestation of our nation’s rotting core of community and brotherhood.

Ultimately, it is a demonstration of the same societal decay that is itself responsible for the lost souls of those who not only perpetrate horrible crimes, like mass shootings, but who resolve to end their problems by ending their life or escape their hollow realities through substance abuse.

We need a more thoughtful and more prayerful society. If we are ever going to get to the bottom of what is causing people to grow so cold in their hearts to kill others or so fallen from hope to kill themselves, we must rediscover the compassion and empathy that can alone save our families, our communities, and our nation from abject dysfunction.

Thoughts and prayers are not keeping us from solutions to the problem. Thought and prayers are the only true beginning to real solutions for the problems that ail our country.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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