TEC: I've Got 99 Problems, but Priest...

TEC: I've Got 99 Problems, but Priest Shortage Ain't One

There are 9 comments on the www.virtueonline.org story from Dec 29, 2012, titled TEC: I've Got 99 Problems, but Priest Shortage Ain't One. In it, www.virtueonline.org reports that:

On a Saturday morning earlier this month a gathering of 900 supporters from across the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia crowded into the main sanctuary of the Falls Church Episcopal ...

Unlike steep declines in membership, finances, and number of parishes that have negatively impacted the life of the Episcopal Church, the denomination has seen a more gradual decline in priests, maintaining ... more than enough to meet its needs. While rural congregations do struggle to attract or support full-time paid clergy, an overall ample supply of priests is surprising, given that a recent report on the state of the clergy in the Episcopal denomination identified a 26 percent drop in ordinations over the past six years ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at www.virtueonline.org.

Listen to the Word

Kingman, AZ

#1 Dec 29, 2012
As members leave gangbusters, a surplus of priests is to be expected -- proving the general membership has a better grasp of the Bible than do the priests and hierarchy.

“... truth will out.”

Since: May 08

Stratford, Connecticut.

#2 Dec 29, 2012
from virtueonline:

"The Roman Catholic Church, in contrast, has faced a sharp decline in vocations for much longer. It would be tempting to link the Episcopal clergy abundance to a larger pool from which to draw: the Episcopal Church does not require its clergy to practice the discipline of celibacy, opening the priesthood to more men. But the number of new male priests has actually dropped by over half since the early 1970s. Probably a more likely explanation for surplus priests is that women and - increasingly - openly gay candidates for the priesthood are either commonplace or swiftly becoming so.

"All of the Episcopal Church's 11 accredited seminaries enroll women, and many have had majority-female graduating classes for years, often filled with second career aspiring clergy ...

"The average age at ordination is now 44 (up from the early 30s in 1970) and the average age of active Episcopal clergy is 58 ..."

Since: Aug 09

Location hidden

#3 Dec 29, 2012
Listen to the Word wrote:
As members leave gangbusters, a surplus of priests is to be expected -- proving the general membership has a better grasp of the Bible than do the priests and hierarchy.
LOL!!!....

Not that anyone should prefer that anyone else have any lack of understanding or "grasp of the bible" any less or more than the priests of the Lord, Christ Jesus, except that to become one, a person must be acceptable to the Brotherhood and Sisterhood of Christ,...

your logic leaves something to be desired.

Rev. Ken

Since: Aug 09

Location hidden

#4 Dec 29, 2012
Joe DeCaro wrote:
from virtueonline:
"The Roman Catholic Church, in contrast, has faced a sharp decline in vocations for much longer. It would be tempting to link the Episcopal clergy abundance to a larger pool from which to draw: the Episcopal Church does not require its clergy to practice the discipline of celibacy, opening the priesthood to more men. But the number of new male priests has actually dropped by over half since the early 1970s. Probably a more likely explanation for surplus priests is that women and - increasingly - openly gay candidates for the priesthood are either commonplace or swiftly becoming so.
"All of the Episcopal Church's 11 accredited seminaries enroll women, and many have had majority-female graduating classes for years, often filled with second career aspiring clergy ...
"The average age at ordination is now 44 (up from the early 30s in 1970) and the average age of active Episcopal clergy is 58 ..."
The Episcopal Church has consistently been accepting people who are entering retirement from the common workforce or career and are looking to answer their call to the priesthood, whether male or female, married or unmarried.

People who have been at work or in a trade all their lives, whose children have grown and left the nest, make excellent, passionate, experienced and wise leaders.

Rev. Ken
What

Ava, MO

#5 Dec 31, 2012
RevKen wrote:
<quoted text>
The Episcopal Church has consistently been accepting people who are entering retirement from the common workforce or career and are looking to answer their call to the priesthood, whether male or female, married or unmarried.
People who have been at work or in a trade all their lives, whose children have grown and left the nest, make excellent, passionate, experienced and wise leaders.
Rev. Ken
Wise leaders that you procalim in your post that mock the Word of the Lord? LOL! What blindness and ignorance!

Since: Aug 09

Location hidden

#6 Jan 1, 2013
What wrote:
<quoted text>
Wise leaders that you procalim in your post that mock the Word of the Lord? LOL! What blindness and ignorance!
LOL!!!....

Not hardly.

If they respond to the Call, they certainly are not mocking the Word.

Quite the contrary.

“... truth will out.”

Since: May 08

Stratford, Connecticut.

#7 Jan 1, 2013
RevKen wrote:
<quoted text>
The Episcopal Church has consistently been accepting people who are entering retirement from the common workforce ...
The Episcopal Church has been accepting more than that.
Think Again

Coats, NC

#8 Jan 1, 2013
RevKen wrote:
<quoted text>
LOL!!!....
Not hardly.
If they respond to the Call, they certainly are not mocking the Word.
Quite the contrary.
What "call" would that be? The call to serve our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ or thecall to serve their own political and social agenda.

Seems like the latter to me in much of TEC.

Since: Aug 09

Location hidden

#9 Jan 1, 2013
Think Again wrote:
<quoted text>
What "call" would that be? The call to serve our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ or the call to serve their own political and social agenda.
Seems like the latter to me in much of TEC.
I understand your points of view.

But, I believe that you two, and many, many others are endorsing your own brands of "Christianity" in spite of the actual Teachings of Jesus Christ.

Please understand. I regard both of you as my brothers in Christ. However, my training and discipleship has taught me to avoid placing "fences" or "drawing lines in the sand" as to where and what boundaries Christ sets to proclaim who He forgives and accepts versus who He does not forgive and accept.

Yes, there may actually be a boundary of sorts through which one must pass in entering the Kingdom of Heaven. And, that boundary may be watched by the Holy Spirit and maintained by Christ such that there are going to be souls who cannot enter. But, I am not smart enough, deep enough in reborn Spirit, capable in depth of comprehension enough, merciful and forgiving enough, serving of my fellow mankind enough, fully loving of God's Children enough to determine just where and why and how someone cannot qualify to enter the Kingdom.

I know many who believe that they can and then willingly do make these judgments. These threads are full of such people. They, for one comprehended and biblically-backed reason or another, think they can competently make this determination for another person. Even though scripture might be read such that it can support their judgments of others, I don't think these people can competently judge another.

There is a reason that I believe this. I cannot point to anyone who I now believe has been and is now consistently perfect. Neither do I claim to operate within any specific measure of perfection. However, I certainly CAN point to individuals who regularly and consistently strive for an ever more responsible level of function within and propagating Light and Love.

These disciples of Christ, some ordained into ministry and some not, make this a constant quest in their Life and it shows. They don't claim perfection either. They just claim, rightfully, that they are intent upon improving their capacity to function in the Light. Sometimes they stumble. But, they always seem to get back up and go again.

Now, here is the kicker, in my book:

Some of these people who consistently function in this Christ-cooperative mode are homosexuals and many of these have a life partner to whom they are sincerely committed and to whom they lovingly provide the spiritual freedom that often only comes through an effective marriage of souls.

These people, in my regard, are truly Christian in every legitimate sense. Scripture, in the Teachings of Christ Jesus, does NOT condemn them. However, there are superstitious and taboo-based, tribal vestiges of condemnation that remain in scripture that can be USED to condemn these people. Therefore, some "biblical literalists" do try to condemn others on the basis of these ancient strictures.

I thank Almighty God that humans are BEGINNING to understand each other in ways that overcome the erroneous concepts that have come along through these ignorant superstitions and primitive taboos. It is important that these negative elements remain in scripture so that the reader can comprehend the ignorance out of which humanity has arisen. This is part of the work of TEC and it is good.

Yet, it is important to realize that there is much more to be understood and celebrated about and within each other than the very limited understanding that we have, so far, gained.

So, we renew our commitment to serve and to identify each other, in Christ, for a New Year. And, we set a higher goal and a greater capacity for ourselves to reach across imaginary boundaries to find ways to connect and give Life.

This IS Christ.

Happy New Year, Boys,-- and Girls --

Rev. Ken

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