Update: For another considered point of view, I've added a comment from young joe at old oc below Greg's predictions.
Original: From the Stand Firm comments, Greg Griffith outlines what he thinks might happen at General Convention 2009 [boldface mine]:
. . . It may not be a foregone conclusion, but it is far likelier than not that at GC09, three major pieces of legislation will be passed:
The first will be a significant expansion of C051. The exact scope of that expansion obviously we won’t know until we get much closer to convention, but rest assured it will fall somewhere between a nationally comprehensive authorization that reflects Susan Russell’s “full inclusion, including holy matrimony” goal at a minimum, and perhaps a proposal for inclusion in a new Book of Common Prayer, whether as a separate rite, or as a modification of the existing Rite of Holy Matrimony and the accompanying rubric; which strikes gender-specific language and adds some predictably stomach-turning treacle.
The second will be some kind of clampdown on dissenting clergy and lay people. I won’t venture a guess as to details, but suffice it to say it will probably make life for outspoken orthodox priests anywhere from much more interesting to crazy interesting, and for loudmouth lay people anywhere from somewhat interesting to much more interesting. I half-expect to be summoned by my bishop or some of the resident Eddie Haskels at Allin House at some point by summer of 2010 at the latest.
The third will be a jaw-dropping clampdown on property issues. Schori and Beers will not leave Anaheim without something that relieves them of the pain being administered to them in Virginia right now.
Then here’s what will happen as news filters out on the blogs and such:
Lay people to the immediate left of us - those “moderate conservatives” who didn’t see any reason to get worked up about what happened in 2003, because it was “way off in New Hampshire” - will be informed that gay marriage is the law of the land in TEC, that it is no longer something that’s confined to a few wacko fringe dioceses like San Francisco and D.C. Think women’s ordination in 1997 - the way it was changed from “local option” in the 70’s, to mandatory in ‘97. I don’t rule out the possibility of goon squads being sent around much like they were in 97, “encouraging” bishops and standing committees to get in line.
Lay people will then realize what the form these rites will take in that of an “amended” and soon-to-be-revised prayer book, and they will stop in their tracks. They will look around for options, and begin planning how they will take their parishes out of the Episcopal Church.
It’s then they’ll be horrified to learn that, according to 815, they don’t actually own the property into which they have poured their time and fortune all these years. There will be outrage, disbelief, and chaos.
Many of them will come here, looking for a detailed plan on how to save their church. Not finding one, some of them will take us to task for being nothing but a bunch of loudmouths who have done nothing to help them, and they can’t believe we’ve let them down this way.
Some will stay and pledge to fight. Others will storm out of the church, and stand on the sidelines berating those who chose to leave.
Then things will get interesting.
So make a copy of this, pull it out next summer, and see if Greg is right!
And an update from young joe in old oc [boldface mine]:
Greg is extremely smart and capable, but I disagree with his approach on this as I do with most of the bloggers and editors on Stand Firm. They don't realize how their attitude has created, to some degree, a profusion of self-fulfilling prophecy.
There are many very traditional/conservative folks who always see us on a slippery slope to death and destruction (I was one of them back in the late '90's as we had just embraced the liturgical/sacramental vision of the Faith and tried to get involved in a handful of different episcopal parishes in the Pasadena area - after that short tour, we ended up rejecting ecusa). Unlike Greg and his staff however, they are not generally fully engaged at parish, diocesan, or church-wide levels, nor do they really know how to be, and that lack of engagement has been the acceptable sub-culture in episcopal parishes, progressive, mainstream or traditionalist, for at least 70 years. However, these average, often very committed lay churchmen and women will take what they read on blogs like Stand Firm as confirmation of the rightness of their perspective, and give up on the possibility of making serious breakthroughs as individuals on any level (We saw this happen at the parish in Glendale). They will take comfort in their para-church groups like Forward in Faith or the AAC (nothing wrong with these groups at all - they just don't know how to break people of their americanized habit patterns), or ecumenical ministries they're involved with, and further separate themselves from the political aspects of parish life, except where the para-church provides the tools to make some specific challenge. As this has occurred all across TEC over the last 25 years, we now see the "prophecies" being fulfilled, and the only place then for many orthodox folks to go is the exits.
I probably have the same turn of the stomach Greg does when I read about the false teaching and apostasy that is becoming the norm in may parts of episcopalianism. But I will not allow myself to become so deeply cynical and always convinced that the end is near. I am sick to death of what the PB and her henchmen at 815 are trying to form in their own image with their ersatz inclusiveness and twisted, secularized (false) gospel. My bags are packed and I am ready to leave ecusa the moment that a consensus forms at the parish about where we should go. And I have been pushing for the parish to begin the process. However, I'm not going to let myself believe that all the orthodox traditionalist folks who remain and don't have the same perspective I do are simply sheep that will go right to the door of the slaughterhouse.
Greg may be right in 80 percent of what he is predicting in this article, but if he is only 80 or 90 percent correct, he does not possess prophetic gifts and so shouldn't be writing as if he is indeed a prophet.
Two approaches to the same issues - some will agree strongly with one, some with other, and many fall somewhere in between, so how do we remain focused on what is best for the church?