Sunday, November 1, 2015


One may say it is a new age in the history of the Episcopal Church. The Most Rev. Michael Curry has been installed as the XXVII Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. He is the first African American to hold that post. However, it is not really a new age, but the fruition of a long evolving age, a journey of some sixty years in the life of the Church. Horizontal religion is now gloriously triumphant.

A few years ago, when he was an Episcopal Church bishop, Mark Lawrence was found of criticizing the Church for what he called its "indiscriminate inclusivity." He quit the Church after it adopted a rite for the blessing of same-sex unions and equality for transgendered clergy. He did not think the Church should include those things. 

Presiding Bishop Curry's installation today was the grand festival of the culmination of the long opening of the Church to indiscriminate inclusivity. Our Lord turned away no one. He was the original practitioner of indiscriminate inclusivity. This Church now practices equality too: male, female, black, white, brown, straight, gay, young, old, all ethnicities, all languages, in short, all of God's children. This is the Episcopal Church after decades of developing an all-inclusive community. And, this is where it should be.

The Episcopal Church was founded 230 years ago to be an American church for the American people. It has succeeded beyond even the wildest imaginations of its founders.

People of South Carolina, your ancestors and forefathers were in on the creation and growth of this great Church. It is your church too. You are included just as everyone else is. Those of you who have felt the need to leave home because it had become too inclusive, know that it embraces you too. You cannot erase history. The Episcopal Church is the great historic home of the Diocese of South Carolina. It is time for the good communicants of the independent diocese to reconsider the last three years. Instead of division, dissention, and hurt, you can look homeward to peace, reconciliation, healing, and love. The Episcopal Church wants you home. 

The video of "Holy Eucharist and Installation of the Most Rev. Michael Curry as XXVII Presiding Bishop," November 1, 2015, is available on YouTube: . It runs nearly three hours.