I have been reading some of the liberal blogs on the South Carolina Supreme Court ruling in All Saints and its implication on our Diocese regarding the Dennis Canon, especially Mark Harris. He has a post on which he cautions people to step back in blogosphere as people comment and analyze to decision. Mark is a priest in the Episcopal Church, and I have really been thinking about one of his comments in his post. While he acknowledges that you can discuss the ruling and its implications, he says
I am interested that the Canons of the Church hold for members of this church, which I understand includes its lay and ordained leadership. So when leaders are ordained, elected, or chosen they lead within the pledge to uphold the Constitution and Canons of The Episcopal Church. The results ought to be that quite independent of the legal status of the deeds for land and proofs of ownership, the leadership has pledged to abide by the CandC of the church.
As a Priest here in South Carolina, I agree, we should. But NOT if the church hierarchy is heretical. I do not think you can always bring your argument back to upholding the constitution and canons of the church when the Presiding Bishop has clearly said things which reject the historic doctrine of the Church. If she believes that the historic doctrine of the church is not applicable today, or needs reinterpreting then any adherence to the constitution and canons needs to be reviewed – or appended to. The C & C of the Episcopal Church MUST STAND UNDER scripture and the truth contained in scripture. ANY departure from that, or a departure by the Presiding bishop into heresy means you must follow scripture if you are to remain biblical.
You cannot remain faithful to something which is unfaithful, regardless of how much you defer to it and ask people to come back to it.