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Well, they still have some standards I guess…

The Episcopal church has defrocked one of its ministers for being both Christian and Muslim. Well, don’t that beat all! At least they managed to defrock her, I suppose. Even though she has been practicing both faiths and seeing no real contradiction there for two years.

Stories like this are almost too ridiculous. This is what happens when the construction of religion in the modern West is taken seriously as a way of living one’s life. After all if all its about is whatever we think our spiritual or existential needs are then why the hell not?  According to Ann Redding, the defrocked minister, the issue is just doing all that you feel you need to for personal fulfillment. “I am not saying you have to go somewhere else to be complete” she says. “Some people don’t need glasses, some people need single lenses. I need bifocals.”

What I find funny is why her imam or mosque put up with this while the Episcopals managed to step in and put their foot down. Aren’t Muslims supposed to be really serious about their faith and stuff? I can see why and Episcopal might look at faith as a pair of glasses you might need to see the world how you want to, but a Muslim? Crazy.

5 Comments

  1. Jason Oliver wrote:

    Now this is interesting. ECUSA consecrated John Shelby Spong, V. Gene Robinson(not only because he’s a self-affirming homosexual), and Katherine Jefferts Schori but they can defrock Ann Redding? I don’t think any of the first these three actually say they fully affirm any of the first two ecumenical creeds and the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion with a clear conscience, definitely not Spong for that matter. Yet ECUSA elected him a Bishop of the Church of God My God! Why pick on Redding? Redding fits right in to ECUSA inclusivity mantra. Just read the Washington National Cathedral with is Baha’i-tinged flavor in its Mission Statement:

    Washington National Cathedral is a church for national purposes called to embody God’s love and to welcome people of all faiths and perspectives. A unique blend of the spiritual and the civic, this Episcopal Cathedral is a voice for generous-spirited Christianity and a catalyst for reconciliation and interfaith dialogue to promote respect and understanding. We invite all people to share in our commitment to create a more hopeful and just world.

    Thursday, April 2, 2009 at 6:36 pm | Permalink
  2. BLDavis wrote:

    I remember some emerging church hipsters saying that this minister and her situation was just one of the “conversation pieces” of life in the post-this and post-that church and that we shouldn’t come to any solid conclusions. Blah blah blah.

    Friday, April 3, 2009 at 7:18 am | Permalink
  3. Richard H wrote:

    I imagine that the Imam didn’t have a problem with the situation because Islam has a role for Jesus (whereas Christianity has no specific role for Islam). I don’t know her situation, but if they hear her saying, (a) Jesus is a prophet, and (b) Mohammed is a prophet, they are hearing something right out of the Quran. Now if she were saying that Jesus is God incarnate, the second person of the Trinity or any of that orthodox Christian stuff, THEN they might have a problem. But if by “prophet” she means nothing more than “a person who gives me what I take to be spiritual wisdom for my personal journey,” then such a belief, minimal though it be, might just fly under their radar.

    Friday, April 3, 2009 at 12:19 pm | Permalink
  4. Jason: What’s the creedal issue with Gene Robinson? Do you have a source?

    Friday, April 3, 2009 at 5:30 pm | Permalink
  5. Jason Oliver wrote:

    Stephen,

    Did you hear the Bishop’s inaugural prayer? He decidedly chose to leave out Trinitarian language because, according to the New York Times, Robinson said that previous inaugural prayers were “aggressively Christian.” He opened up his prayer with “God of our many understandings.” Who was he exactly praying to? Lord knows.

    Saturday, April 4, 2009 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

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  1. Dissent in Ecclesial Context(s) | Inhabitatio Dei on Friday, April 3, 2009 at 6:01 am

    [...] I don’t really have in mind fundamental theological dissent. Not things like trying to be a Muslim and a Christian, or argue about the fundamental definition of being Reformed. Rather I have in mind things like [...]

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