A key moment at the House of Bishops meeting at General Convention began with a question. Bishop Jennifer Baskerville-Burrows asked Presiding Bishop Michael Curry this question:
“What should the agenda of Episcopal Bishops be? Michael thought for a moment and then spoke from the heart. Here is part of what he said:
“I’m very concerned about this country that I love, potentially being on the verge of living out the opposite of unselfish, sacrificial love. How can we help this country to bind up our wounds, to learn to live democracy, and to be truly a country where there is liberty and justice for all. That’s at stake…If we can help our people to find their voice and claim the values and ideals that most people probably believe…we can help to heal this land, and help this country join with others and heal God’s creation…I believe this House, the people in this room, you are so smart, so capable, and faithful. There may be the capacity to find our voice – not a partisan voice, but a follower of Jesus voice- that might help our people and our churches, and then, maybe in turn the sensible center that is in this country, and in this world, to find its voice… I can’t sit back and watch this country self-destruct, and neither can we.”The Most Reverend Michael B. Curry
His statement came from his soul and speaks to the present moment in our country. One example of following up on this call to heal, was the statement we adopted two days later called, “Climate and Our Vocation in Christ.”
The statement says “Climate change and environmental degradation are manifestations of our tuning away from God.” Then it lists the many ways that so much is made worse by climate change. And then calls on us to act:
House of Bishops: Expressing the Mind of the House on Climate and Our Vocation in Christ
“If we hope to treat all migrants with dignity, we must address climate change so droughts, floods, and extreme weather don’t force people to flee.
If we hope to build peace, we must address climate change so that competition for scarce resources doesn’t drive further violence
If we hope to ensure that every child of God has enough to eat, we must address climate change so that the bountiful earth can continue to support and sustain food systems that nourish people and the soil.”
The statement continues with our belief in the Resurrection of Jesus that gives us a message of hope to tell the world.
“Climate and Our Vocation in Christ “ serves as an example of finding our voice and calling for healing in our country and our world. But we have more to say and, more importantly, more to do as Church.
For many reasons, I think The 80th General Convention will be a significant one in The Episcopal Church. Thank you for reading my reflections in these daily blogs. It’s been good to share this experience with you.
God bless you.