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Disappearing data challenge for Presiding Bishop: The Church of England Newspaper, June 17, 2011 p 7. June 16, 2011

Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, The Episcopal Church.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

A flap over the ethics of editing the on-line encyclopedia Wikipedia has erupted in the Episcopal Church, with conservative bloggers crying foul after staffers at the Episcopal Church’s national offices in New York deleted unflattering information from the biography of Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

On March 17, blogger Mary Ailes, author of the popular “Baby Blue” website, reported that a “section of the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church’s bio on Wikipedia has gone missing.”

The expunged biographical details concerned the Presiding Bishop’s claim, published by the national church in summary biographies of candidates standing for election as presiding bishop in 2007, that she had served as “Dean of the Good Samaritan School of Theology in Corvallis, Oregon, from 1994–2000.”

Ms. Ailes further reported the redaction had been made by church staffer who stated “I work in the Communication Office at the Episcopal Church Center. Edits made per Bishop Jefferts Schori’s suggestion.”

Critics charged the new presiding bishop had not been entirely straight forward about her career, and after her election, Bishop Jefferts Schori conceded she had perhaps been unclear in her description of the post, as the Good Samaritan School of Theology was not an accredited seminary or theological college but the adult education programme at the parish where she served as an assistant priest.

The story was quickly picked up by other conservative bloggers led by ‘Virtueonline’, who expressed joy at the presiding bishop’s discomfort over the “puffery” in her resume.

A spokesman for the presiding bishop told The Church of England Newspaper the redaction was a “non-story.”

“There was incorrect information and it was corrected.  There is no attempt to hide or mislead, just to be accurate,” the spokesman said.

However, James Coder, author of the ‘Viderunt Omnes’ blog argues the real issue at play was the culture of historical revisionism rampant among the upper echelons of the Episcopal Church.

Mr. Coder notes that in 2007 correct but unflattering information about Pennsylvania Bishop Charles Bennison was redacted from Wikipedia.  “This is the second time TEC is implicated in serious Wikipedia manipulation,” he said, adding that the “ongoing cover-up, and the original story warrant a good deal of discussion in the Anglican world about our political culture, and how a falsity of this magnitude in a Primatial election too so long to escape our attention.”

Speculation on conservative blog sites continues as to whether this additional information on her resume gave the presiding bishop her one-vote victory in 2007 over Bishop Henry Parsley of Alabama.  However, Bishop Jefferts Schori’s margin of victory came with the support of at least four conservative bishops, including one sitting diocesan bishop who has since been deposed by the presiding bishop.

Following the election, four conservative bishops told CEN they had voted for Bishop Jefferts Schori as they wanted to precipitate a crisis and elect, from their perspective, the “worst possible candidate”.  One retired bishop explained his vote as being “strategic” as he wanted to see the Episcopal  “house of cards” collapse.


1. W. A. Whitestone - June 17, 2011

There aren’t a lot of pure motive or heroes in this story or in the story of The Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion since 2003 at least.

There remain precious few guardians of the Faith Once Delivered, as Anglicans like to say, exist on the national or global levels.

Anglican Fudge describes best what has gone on since Rowan Williams has been deviously assisting Katharine Jefferts-Shori in performing her machinations aimed at converting all of Canterbury Anglicanism into a pansexuality cult. This Fudge is a by-product of intense spinning, dodging and evading the truth, then churning out rationalizations and explanations, interminable listening to each others’ meaningless Indaba and Ubuntu stories and avoiding the serious life and death spiritual issues of the true Faith. The TEC House of Bishops and most of the Western province leaders have followed the script with few exceptions.

The Haarlem Globetrotter-esque tricks performed in Jamaica without consequence showed the extent of the pansexuality promoters contempt for their colleagues as well as contempt, even ignorance of the Faith itself.

Many have not bowed their knees to Baalish idealogy that seems to insanely drive these people. But have their tongues been cut out? Have they checked their minds at the door and let themselves be blinded to Scripture’s warnings, to even the consistend warnings and statistics published by the Center for Disease Control, even if they have no spiritual discernment and understanding or no eyes to see that the way into the Kingdom of God is by repentance and surrender of all our sin, our old identity and NOONE is excluded, exempted or excepted except by his or her own willful choice?

Our changing feelings and desires are not our identity. God is the I AM, the only unchanging Identity, the good and holy One, our Model of Father, Christ our Model of man, brother, friend, bridegroom, heroic savior. We receive new identities and ways to live, when we are born into His Kingdom by faith. We learn to walk and live in this new abundant way of life, spiritual and relational abundance.

It is good, fulfilling, joyful, but not easy. Christ’s true Way of Love, Truth and Life is hard, narrow and costs us all those things that harm and hold us, but it is the way, the only way to righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. It is the way of the Cross. We sacrifice our sinful flesh and desires and He helps us. Afterward, we are victorious and free. We give up our rot and poppycock and get His inheritance of eternal life forevermore…and in the here and now.

So – how do you get a Presiding Bishop with such an image of herself, that she sees herself as an Icon, and grasps power for herself, stomps on people, canons and bylaws to get what she wants, to forsake the false gospel she is promoting such a harmful way of life that leads to death, to see the mere, humble, difficult truth and The One Who calls and saves, and want to follow Him?

Only God can change hearts. It is something only He can do. We can only witness to His work and Word in us. We can pray for her, but speak up loudly, say NO and mean it. And stand by our words. Something we see so little of in Canterbury Anglicanism.

(John 3:3-16, Romans 1:18-32, I Corinthians 6:9-20)

2. Peter Clark - June 18, 2011

Never mind, the faithful will find their own way, with God’s help, and eventually the ECUSA and those churches who follow its lead will be left with empty buildings, and, hopefully, no money to pay their clergy. We should pray that those who need to find somewhere to worship outside the ECUSA will be able to set tup their own churches within the traditional Anglican framework, if not, there’s always the example of a couple of Evangelical church plants on the central coast of New South Wales, Australia

3. Disappearing data challenge for Presiding Bishop: The Church of England Newspaper, June 17, 2011 p 7. | tyfivedukos - June 19, 2011

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