Author Topic: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality  (Read 2746 times)

navyman

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #15 on: July 28, 2007, 08:41:38 PM »
To paraphrase Freud, in light of questions about my motives for asking my question, "Sometimes a question, is just a question."

I appreciate the feedback. I think Bishop Hanson realizes he has a huge tiger by the tail, regardless of whatever his personal position might be. I think the problem finally is that appealing constantly to rules of procedure or standards in church bylaws without a definitive up/down decision on the fundamental underlying issue of whether or not it is tolerable in the church of the living God for there to be pastors who are actively homosexual will never resolve the issue.

He not only faces this in his own church, but in his role with the LWF he is facing an ever growing pressure from LWF member churches who reject homosexuality as acceptable for any Lutheran churches.

The attempt to say that churches can hold opposite positions on this issue and still together proclaim a clear identity as Lutheran Christians, is, in my view, ultimately impossible.


Thank you Pastor McCain:

However, we march on anyway, sorry to say!  Like CCM, this too will be pushed down our throats some day!

Respectfully,

Don

navyman

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #16 on: July 28, 2007, 08:45:28 PM »
Glen Piper writes:
Asking a question about an issue, seemingly (if not obviously) to increase clarity & understanding, hardly seems like an effort to "trouble the waters from outside..." Such an interpretation strikes me as oddly uncharitable.

I comment:
I don't know how long you have read this forum, but I've been here a long time. Some of those "questions" are not intended to seek "clarity or understanding," but are rhetorical devices or flat-out criticisms of the ELCA from people who do not intend to "understand," but to underline how awful they think the ELCA is. Yes, that's my judgment, but I'll state it anyway.


Glenn, this was an issue from the very start of the ELCA, Liberal and Revisionist Group.  Thus its has been a thorn in the side of the pew members from the very start, and still is.  Scripture isn't going to stand in there way either, so to say!

Don Whitbeck

I've read this forum long enough to have seen you comment on LCMS issues/threads (i.e., as an "outsider"), as well as on many other threads wherein you employed certain rhetorical devices & tones.

I've also been around various other sites long enough to know that Rev. McCain can be rather, shall we say, pointed in his style. IOW, I've seen him have a go with many folks (when I thought he was in the right and in the wrong, btw). This particular post by him just didn't seem to warrant such a negative reply.

He (like me, for example...) could merely be wanting to understand the history & politics of the issue in question. Which is certainly valid, even when one doesn't agree with the theology that is woven throughout the issue, no?

-ghp

mchristi

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #17 on: July 30, 2007, 01:34:25 PM »
Now back to the bishop referred to above, Mark Hanson of the St. Paul Synod. He was under much pressure from his congregations because he had expedited the irregular ordination of a lesbian.

I don't think Paul's material here is quite accurate.  Watching closely as St. Paul-Reformation moved toward ordaining Anita Hill, I saw nothing that would accurately be called "expediting" her ordination on the part of Mark Hanson.  I believe he did bring issues up for discussion with ELCA leadership and his fellow bishops.  But I wouldn't say that it follows that he "expedited" the ordination.

Help me with my faulty, sinful memory here:

I seem to recall that the whole Anita Hill thing came down to the fact that she/the congregation was guilty, BUT that punishment would have to wait until after that year's CWA.

Lo and behold, the local ordinary for that synod was, mirabile dictu, translated to Presiding Bishop of the ELCA and things settled down, which is to say, the troublemakers pretty much got away with what they wanted.

The congregation (along with another congregation which ordained non-approved candidates, but wherein the issue was not homosexuality) was censured before the CWA that year.  The additional sanctions that he also levied against the congregation, however, were not to take effect until after the assembly.  Things settling down, from my observation, had little to do with Hanson's election to be the Presiding Bishop.  The choice of a censure was made after synod discussions and much deliberation with the synod council.  The synod council recommended to Bishop Hanson before the CWA to go with censure and not to pursue disciplinary charges with either congregation with ordination rule violations.

Actually, Bishop Hanson imposed "sanctions" against the congregation. However, his successor, Bishop Rogness, deemed that Hanson overstepped his power and authority when he imposed "sanctions" and he removed them -- a proper interpretation of the rules as I understand them.

...

Thus, as a synod bishop, Hanson imposed greater discipline than he had authority to do. At the same time, he didn't pursue the steps that would have removed the congregation from the ELCA. I don't think that any congregations have been removed by disciplinary action since St. Francis and First United in the early 1990s.

Bp. Rogness did indeed lift the sanctions against the congregations.  He did so over a year after they had been imposed and several months after taking office.  He did point out, correctly, I believe, that there was no constitutional provision for a bishop applying sanctions.  (This was, BTW, not an innovation on the part of Bp. Hanson, as shortly before the bishop of the Central States Synod had made the innovation himself.)  It is correct that Hanson did not pursue steps that could lead to the suspension or removal of the congregation.  That was, however, a decision that was reached together with the synod council, which I understand had long deliberations with Bp. Hanson on the matter.

Mark C.

Vern

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #18 on: July 30, 2007, 02:20:19 PM »
Mark C.

Thanks for your info, but aren't you just adding the Synod Council to the "list" of the accused?  I am assuming you are talking about the national synod council in Chicago, right?

Vern

mchristi

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #19 on: July 30, 2007, 03:38:17 PM »
Thanks for your info, but aren't you just adding the Synod Council to the "list" of the accused?  I am assuming you are talking about the national synod council in Chicago, right?

No, I don't think i'm adding the synod council to any list of the accused.  I think the synod council was quite concerned about doing what would be acceptable within the synod.  Also, it is good to remember here that the synod was dealing with two congregations with pastors who were irregularly ordained, one involved the sexuality question, the other did not.

I also do mean the synod council, as in of the St. Paul Area Synod.  The "national" council to which you refer is called, in ELCA parlance, the Church Council.

Mark C.

Vern

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #20 on: July 30, 2007, 06:10:43 PM »
The St Paul Synod to me, a lay person, seems like a "secret society" that works on it's own and does not, like the council of Immanuel Lutheran Church,  inform us of it's actions.

mchristi

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #21 on: July 30, 2007, 06:22:59 PM »
The St Paul Synod to me, a lay person, seems like a "secret society" that works on it's own and does not, like the council of Immanuel Lutheran Church,  inform us of it's actions.

Why do you say that?  The process in the synod included opprotunity for members of synod congregations to offer input and discuss the two cases that the synod was considering.  When the synod council made it's council to Bp. Hanson and he then censured the congregations, there was a letter that was sent out and made public.  It most certainly wasn't a case of working on its own but not informing anyone what it does.

Mark C.

Charles_Austin

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #22 on: July 30, 2007, 06:54:46 PM »
And if your congregation council does not make its decisions public, you need to speak with your pastor or the president of the congregation immediately.

Mike Bennett

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #23 on: July 31, 2007, 10:34:05 AM »
And if your congregation council does not make its decisions public, you need to speak with your pastor or the president of the congregation immediately.

If you read Vern's sentence (which I can only guess is the one you are answering, as you refuse to quote the posting to which you reply) you will see that grammatically it suggests his congregation *does* make its decisions public.

Mike Bennett
“What peace can there be, so long as the many whoredoms and sorceries of your mother Jezebel continue?”  2 Kings 9:22

Charles_Austin

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Re: Bishop Hanson and Homosexuality
« Reply #24 on: July 31, 2007, 04:31:08 PM »
My apologies. And I am glad to see that Immanuel Lutheran Church is not a secret society.