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Monday, November 20, 2006

Quo Vadis?

In my late teens I found my way back to the Episcopal Church from which I had fallen away when younger. I attended confirmation classes under the inspiring tutelage of the Rev'd G. Harris Collingwood at the Church of the Advent in Boston and was later confirmed at that same wonderful institution. It was was a joyous occasion and the Advent, then as now, was a glorious shrine to Anglo-Catholic worship. The year this happy event took place, unfortunately, was 1976, thus at precisely the time I returned to the church the church began to leave me. I nevertheless persevered, over the years hanging on; turning the other cheek, seeking out the fewer and fewer orthodox churches wherever my life's journey took me. All the while I hoped and prayed the leaders of the Episcopal Church would see and repent the errors of their ways. They have not and, apparently, will not.

So what to do? I have seriously considered "poping" and have discussed it with two close friends, both of whom are devout and traditional Romans. They both advise against it, one of them writing me, with beautiful succinctness, "I am bound in conscience to tell you that I believe the Catholic Church in the United States as it is presently constituted would pose severe temptations for you against the virtues of Faith, Hope, and Charity . . . I would far prefer to see you remain a Christian in a corrupt church than to become an apostate from the true one." I have followed that sage counsel.

So here I stand, a Christian in a corrupt church but I will stay put for now. I still cannot believe the majority of us in the pews support the heresies espoused by our leadership. I still like to believe that those of us in the pews will one day come to our senses and wrestle our church back from the New Religionists. I still want to believe that Canterbury will one day take a real stand on the matter and encourage us to take our church back. If not, well, the matter will take care of itself: the Episcopal Church's leadership will devolve into a ragtag collection of goddess worshipers, tree huggers, wiccans, queer-studies types etc., all at cross-purposes with one another with their conflicting pantheistic beliefs. Like brigands they will quarrel over the spoils, the quarrelling will get violent and the institution will eventually be destroyed from within. Those few remaining orthodox, if any, will then have but no choice to walk away and find a new home, a true home; a home that may well have a Roman address.

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