Humiliation Attempt Fail
It is illustrative, I think, to set down in list form what happened before, during, and after Canon Kearon’s appearance at the Executive Council meeting yesterday.
1. Canon Kearon was on vacation in the United States.
2. Bruce Garner, a member of the Executive Council, suggested that he be invited to speak to the Council.
3. Canon Kearon agreed to break away from his vacation.
4. He requested a private meeting with the Council.
5. His request was put up for a vote.
6. The Council rejected his request.
7. He was grilled in show trial format in front of the entire Council and the media.
8. He was very clear about the reasons the Episcopal Church has been disciplined and very clear that the present strains in Communion relationships have been caused by the Episcopal Church.
9. The Presiding Bishop, for some reason, attempted to cut him off and end the meeting.
10.Her attempt was overridden by the Council.
11. After the meeting he was publicly ridiculed by members of the Council.
Council member Bruce Garner said he’d
“never witnessed so much obfuscation in such a short period of time” in his entire life.
The President of the House of Deputies struck a defiant tone:
“I’m still an Anglican, and nobody, whether it is a person who is told that they are an Anglican pope or that they should not be an Anglican pope … can tell me that I’m not an Anglican,”
“I love being an Anglican…I love being part of the Episcopal Church,” and any action taken against the Episcopal Church cannot take that identity from her.”
“Do you sign on to … a punitive body of Christ?..Are we now part of a punitive body of Christ?”
12. After Canon Kearon’s departure, the Council elected Bishop Ian Douglas to serve on the ACC Standing Committee…an action that defies the present ACC rules.
If I didn’t know better, I would say that the purpose of the meeting was to humiliate Canon Kearon. Perhaps it was unintentional…perhaps the impulse for vengeance in the wake of “mitregate” and everything else that has happened since the ABC’s Pentecost letter was so great that what was designed to be a polite affair turned ugly? I don’t know. But it was ugly. It was insulting. And it failed badly. Canon Kearon came off as the patient, calm, adult explaining to a room full of petulant children why they will not be permitted to go out to recess. And the Executive Council, KJS, and Bonnie Anderson all managed to do what before the meeting seemed impossible—appear even more mediocre, angry, and buffoonish than before.
And if I know anything about the way officialdom in the UK handles diplomatic insults—even failed ones—we should be expecting some subtle but unmistakable consequences.
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