Usual committee meeting from 7:30-9:00. That time slot this morning was devoted solely to hearings on three categories of resolution. The first was the one that originated within the committee itself: start the process of Prayer Book revision. There was a handful of strong, articulate advocates. No one testified in opposition, so I have no doubt that we will in due course report this resolution out to the House of Bishops. Proponents did not offer compelling arguments so much as forceful rhetoric. ("Let's bring our Prayer Book into our own century.") I've already been pretty clear on what I think about this, so I won't repeat myself.
Then there was the resolution about appointing a task force to study the question of offering Holy Communion to the unbaptized. Didn't we send this one packing in 2012, you might ask? Why, yes, we did. By a near-unanimous margin in the House of Bishops, I might add. Yet, the issue is like the Terminator--it keeps coming back. No arguments on either side of which everyone is not already familiar. It is, of course, ludicrous on its face, and betrays a culpable lack of understanding of what either the Eucharist or Baptism actually are. Jeepers.
And then there was a request for the SCLM, as it works on the next revision of the Book of Occasional Services, to include a rite for celebrating the taking of a new name, for any of a number of reasons, one of which is becoming transgendered. Several individuals who so identify were there to testify.
Because a friend of mine was presiding, and because the bishops were to be bussed straight from there to elect the next Presiding Bishop, I attended the daily Eucharist for the first time this convention. It was Rite 2, Eucharistic Prayer C ... more or less. There was some strange material at the Fraction, and the post-communion prayer was not from the Prayer Book. Sadly, the cantor apparently took it upon herself to emend the very language of Holy Scripture itself as she sang the verse for the Gospel Acclamation, substituting "my God" for "the Father." Twice. We continue our slide into liturgical antinomianism.
I was not surprised that we elected Michael Curry as our next Presiding Bishop. But I was surprised that it happened in one ballot, and by such a lopsided margin. Bishop Curry is a devoted disciple of Jesus (whose name he is not bashful about mentioning), a creedal believer, a compelling preacher, and charismatic leader. That will all be refreshing, and I look forward to working with him. I hope he is also a reconciler and healer, because the Episcopal Church is a bleeding church that is largely in denial about its own woundedness.
The afternoon legislative session consisted of mostly pretty minor items, most of which included on the consent calendar. But we did manage to get ourselves pretty gloriously bogged down in the resolution that we passed in Committee 11 yesterday dealing with providing Holy Communion for people in remote places for whom obtaining the services of priest is not very easy on a frequent or routine basis. After a whole bunch of parlaimentary maneuvering, we ended up passing it as presented--that is, the substitute for the original motion that we passed in committee yesterday.