East Tennessee bishop’s response to primates’ statement

January 14, 2016

[Episcopal Diocese of East Tennessee] Presiding Bishop Michael Curry said:

“Our commitment to be an inclusive church is not based on a social theory or capitulation to the ways of the culture, but on our belief that the outstretched arms of Jesus on the cross are a sign of the very love of God reaching out to us all. While I understand that many disagree with us, our decision regarding marriage is based on the belief that the words of the Apostle Paul to the Galatians are true for the church today: All who have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female, for all are one in Christ.”

It is unfortunate that a majority of the Primates of the Anglican Communion have told The Episcopal Church to go “sit in the corner.” Regardless, we are still sisters and brothers in Christ with all people in the Anglican Communion, and more importantly sisters and brothers in Jesus. That will never change. Never.

We hope, pray, and trust that the leadership of the Anglican Communion, as well as the leadership of all of God’s people will now devote their resources, energy, and action to combat the true evils of injustice, poverty, suffering, degradation of creation, violence, and discrimination in our broken world.

Under the guidance and leadership of Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, we will – in in our corner – continue to be part of the Jesus Movement in the wider church and world, in our parishes, and in our communities. And all shall be well.

“What does it mean to Episcopalians to be ‘sanctioned’ by a majority of the Primates of the Anglican Communion for refusing to treat our LGBT members as second class Christians? It means we’re willing to pay ‘the cost of discipleship’ as we follow the Jesus who welcomed, blessed, included, empowered and loved absolutely everybody. It means we take seriously our call to be part of the Jesus Movement – proclaiming the Good News of God’s inclusive love to the world. It means we choose inclusion over exclusion, compassion over condemnation, and justice over judgment.”     – The Rev. Susan Russell

The Right Reverend George D. Young, III
Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of East Tennessee



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