Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Anglican Aerobics Deux

This posting by Christopher Johnson at Midwest Conservative Journal reminded me that I had posted on this earlier.

From MCJ:

Mr. Kenneth Arnold of Portland, Oregon, who's evidently a deacon in the Episcopal Organization since he wrote "Deacon" in front of his name, is not down with the Nicene Creed:
How strange. I am not a fan of the Nicene Creed, finding much of it to be a dry recitation of ancient ways of thinking that require a suspension of 21st century thought. What’s interesting to me is that this exercise is somehow interpreted to mean that the Creed is viable if everyone in the room believes some part of it; so long as everyone together believes the whole, then it is valid as a statement of belief. A room full of people, taken together, can be described as confirming the truth of almost any belief, however absurd.

Insofar as lots of liberal Episcopalians tried to hide behind the creeds as a way of justifying giving a pointy hat to an unrepentant sinner(hey, the creeds don't say anything about homosexuality, you know), this seems to be an odd attitude for an Episcopalian to take. But if you're a "deacon" in the Church Of What's Going To Be Happening Five Years From Now, Give Or Take, I guess you need to jettison all the EO's "historical documents" that you possibly can.

I believe Deacon Arnold was responding to this story:
The Rev. Tom Woodward of Santa Fe, N.M., once devised a startling way to show a congregation its belief, unbelief, and the value of community. He calls it "an experience with the Nicene Creed."

After explaining that they would be reading through the creed phrase by phrase, Woodward would give the charge: "When the phrase is something you understand on one level or another, and believe, stand up or remain standing. When the phrase is something that makes no sense to you, or is something you do not believe, sit down or remain sitting."

The resulting dance, he said, appeared to be something akin "to a rebellious exercise class," with folks popping up, sitting down and squirming to watch their neighbors as they stood and sat and stood again.

At the end, Woodward would ask what they had observed. "The answers were always the same: No one stood all the way through the creed, and no one stayed seated all the way through, and there was always someone standing for every phrase."

Ya know, it's always something!

No comments: