Episcopal Bishop of California Late to Cordileone Installation Service, Demands National Attention
Bishop Andrus was late to the interfaith procession for Archbishop Cordileone’s installation service, flounced out when he wasn’t seated immediately, and scuttled off to his diocesan webmaster to post a news release announcing the Vile Insult. Needless to say, outrage and squealing has ensued from leftist Episcopalians on various blogs.
When I first read Bishop Andrus’s breathless release about his Episcopal Martyrdom to the Fanged Papist, Salvatore Cordileone, the new and conservative and thus much-loathed Roman Catholic archbishop of San Francisco [the Andrus release included the words “detained” and “basement”—heh],my first thought was “goodness, are we sure Bishop Andrus was even invited?” And further, should he be seated with the Christian leaders of other denominations, or with the Buddhists and Hindus?
And then I thought “why is Bishop Andrus so desperate for attention”?
Any sane person would know that Archbishop Cordileone has much larger fish to fry than to figure out how to offer some kind of pointed insult to one of the scads of interfaith guests at his installation service.
Once one recognizes that, then one has to ask why on earth Bishop Andrus had to point so loudly and publicly to his own perceived insult? Either it was deliberate by Archbishop Cordileone [hardly likely], or it was accidental and a product of poor logistics, or bad communication, or some other kerfluffly mix-up.
So I started to dig a little deeper.
Conservative Episcopalians were thrilled over Salvatore’s selection as the new archbishop; at StandFirm there was much rejoicing, for instance. He will do a lot to clean up the unholy mess left by his predecessor, not to mention being a great counterweight to the revisionists of all sorts in that region. Make no mistake, Archbishop Cordileone’s elevation represents a huge threat to the ruling order of that region, both politically and spiritually.
So—unsurprisingly—Bishop Andrus and the tiny number of Episcopalians in that state have engaged in plenty of territory marking, passive-agressive sniping, and outright hostility, well-noted by various Roman Catholics. No suprise there, and I’m confident that Archbishop Cordileone recognizes that he doesn’t share the same Gospel as Bishop Andrus.
But the thing is . . . the Episcopal Diocese of California is about the size of a mosquito and shrinking steadily smaller too. So it’s not as if Archbishop Cordileone actually needs to deal much with Bishop Andrus, who’s essentially the head of a tiny diocese in a tiny organization that is plummeting fast in terms of size, credibility, and influence.
There’s just not much that the Episcopal Diocese of California has to offer in terms of authority, power, credibility, intellect, spiritual health, pastoral care—not that much of anything at all.
Back to the immediate histrionics though.
The Archdiocese issued a statement pointing out that Bishop Andrus had arrived too late for the interfaith procession that seated religious leaders in the front rows of the service so the ushers had tried to figure out a way to get him into the service with minimal fuss and notice—rather like ushers do in Episcopal services every single Sunday. The Archdiocese apologized and was very sorry and assured everyone that they had intended no insult.
Then, Bishop Andrus made what I consider to have been a Largish Mistake. He issued his timeline of events—and immediately the experienced Episcopalian recognizes a big problem.
Andrus states that he arrived in the correct place at the Cathedral at 1.40 p.m.—while implying that he had to make his way around hordes of protesters between 1.30 and 1.40 [turns out that press reports indicate the gay activists were only able to muster some three dozen protesters—pretty pathetic for San Francisco]. But 1.40 is rather late for a service in which he was to be seated processional style at the front of a massive building with more than 2000 attendees. Even a standard wedding service will seat the honored guests half an hour early. At the installation of an archbishop? Incredible to think that the honored guests were to be processed at 1.45.
I didn’t find an Order of Service for this installation, but a little googling turns up some other instances of processions for installations. Here’s a description of the pre-events of the installation service for Archbishop Timothy Dolan. In it we find this, for a service starting at 2 p.m.:
“At the April 15 Mass of Installation, a procession will begin at 1:30 p.m. with representatives of various groups, ministries and organizations of the archdiocese, as well as bishops, archbishops and cardinals. Cardinal Egan and Archbishop Dolan will be at the end of the procession.”
My guess is that the procession took place at 1.30, he arrived at 1.40, and the flustered ushers didn’t know what to do with him. They state that he was asked to stay in the “conference rooms below the Cathedral” [ie, “a basement room” according to Bishop Andrus’s news release and they “detained” him]. In the meantime, as one commenter points out, the Greek Orthodox clergy would be included in the procession with the Roman Catholic bishops, so the ushers weren’t “seating them” ahead of an outraged Bishop Andrus—they were lining them up for the procession with the rest of the bishops.
So the story of the day is this.
—Bishop Andrus arrived late for the interfaith procession. This may be his fault. It may be his assistant’s fault. It may be the event planners’ fault if they told the assistant the wrong time for him to show up.
—The RC procession—in which the Greek Orthodox bishops were included—was forming when he arrived in the conference rooms to which he was directed.
—At 2 p.m. the service started, Bishop Andrus took offense over not having been seated, and left, apparently to go sit with his webmaster and write up a release about the gross insult to which he had been subjected.
—When the ushers returned, he was already gone.
But the real question is this.
Why does Bishop Andrus feel the need to write a public statement announcing his insult?
I think, upon reflection, it’s pretty clear why.
Bishop Andrus is essentially irrelevant.
A significantly larger constellation exists in Archbishop Cordileone’s diocese and position. He will be a massive influence in that region, and all the accompanying prestige, authority, power, and influence that arrives with his diocese and position will be noted and remarked upon.
In contrast, Bishop Andrus has little influence at all. I think he recognizes that, without some kind of “story” he’ll basically be ignored. He’s got to do something involving spectacle [like marching in Gay Pride parades featuring naked people, save for their chaps] and Jerry Springerish behavior in order to get attention.
Hence, his news release announcing his insult.
You know ... I’m guessing that Episcopal bishops are far more insecure and anxious than we can imagine. This kind of infantile behavior, in which small bullies publicly announce perceived insults to their stature and make themselves ridiculous in the eyes of Episcopalians, Roman Catholics, and various other members of the pointing crowd, will only, I expect, get much worse.
So we can expect lots more hilarity from the Diocese of California, I think. This represents a promising start for all of our entertainment.
If I were called in to advise the new Archbishop on dealing with Bishop Andrus, I’d advise him to deal not at all. One of the games that revisionist activists play when they’re in a position of weakness is the “I’m a victim, throw me a bone and recognize me” game. They announce their victimhood—some perceived slight or insult—and decent people try to say “no insult intended” and then the “victim” demands some sort of redress or token of esteem.
The way to deal with such a manipulator is to simply x them out of one’s orbit. The “victim” will squeal much louder—like a child having a temper tantrum. But your job is to simply shut the door, and offer the noise-maker no attention whatsoever.
I’d heartily advise that in the case of Archbishop Cordileone. There is absolutely nothing that Bishop Andrus has that you need. But you have a lot of things that Bishop Andrus yearns after—size, influence, power, and a ready access to high-profile press. Don’t offer that to Bishop Andrus, even if it’s an attempt to address his “concerns.” Believe you me—take it from an Episcopalian—he’ll always have plenty of “concerns” every single day. His “concerns” are never-ending, when he needs your attention and your notice.
Don’t give him those things.
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