I Reject the Church

Within the last 48 hours we have seen just how irrelevant and out of touch the Church has become through a stark contrast. President Obama has declared June LGBT Month in America. In what is a bold move, for the first time “Pride month” is being recognized by the President of the United States. In his declaration, the President praised the many and diverse contributions of LGBT Americans in all areas of endeavor, and pledged to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act passed under George “Pinhead” W. Bush’s administration and to eliminate “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in the military to allow for full, honest participation by our LGBT brothers and sisters in this nation’s military.

In stark contrast, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Ro-ro Williams has issued the first sanctions for Anglican Churches that “have inflamed tensions over homosexuality in the Church.” The Churches that have “inflamed tensions” are, of course, the Episcopal Church and others that have granted LGBT clergy and members full access to the life of the Church. How in the world does anyone of intelligence or compassion declare that equality is error and side with small minded, uneducated, pinhead, so-called bishops who are homophobic and tribal in the worst sense of that word – some of whom have endorsed killing people whose only crime is bearing the sexual orientation that God has gifted them with?

My pastoral associate, The Rev. Jeffrey Montoya, suggested to me in a phone conversation yesterday that we have been looking at what is happening in the Institutional Church in a less than accurate way. He said, and I agree wholeheartedly, that those of us who have stepped outside the Institution to establish a more loving path have not been rejected by the Church – rather we have rejected the Church. I would add that we have seen it for the sinful, evil body that it has become: From the Roman Catholic abuse of children and nuns and the subsequent cover up; to the persecution of LGBT individuals by most every segment of the Church; to the control, manipulation, and fear mongering by evangelicals and their cronies, the Institutional Church seldom represents the will of God or teachings of Jesus and has become instead the domain of small minded, impotent fools. Those persecuted peoples who insist on remaining inside denominations which marginalize them and discriminate against them in the absurd hope of changing the monster from within are fooling themselves at the expense of denying the people God created them to be. Like an abused wife who won’t leave her alcoholic husband, these people need our support to step outside the Institution into fullness of life. Those of us who have had the strength to reject the Church need to reach out to those who need help to step out from under their abuser.

Let me say it just as plainly as I can. If you are a member of a denomination that has not explicitly stated their full inclusion of all people in the life of the Church and acted in accord with that statement you are a part of the problem, not working for a solution. Moreover, if you have isolated yourself in an Independent Church that doesn’t actually do ministry with people who are not relatives or pets of the clergy, you are a part of the problem too.

The Church is dying, and I for one am glad to see it go. Let’s not wait for the corpse to rot, let’s get on with the real work of ministry that needs to be done. There are a lot of hurting people out there, and we need to reach out to them rather than be distracted by the evil heads of Anglicanism, Roman Catholicism, and their counterparts to distract us through their evil actions from the good work we are here to do!

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