BaptistPlanet

Southern Religion

Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth to have ordination of woman to the priesthood

slaughter

Formed in a 1983 administrative division of the large and growing Episcopal Diocese of Dallas, and stripped of most of its conservatives in a series of actions following consecration of an openly gay New Hampshire Bishop Gene Robinson, the once profoundly conservative Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is now effectively progressive.

As a result, 33 years after the Episcopal Church approved ordination of women, it is ready to ordain Deacon Susan Slaughter to the priesthood.

She is to be the first woman ordained to the priesthood in the history of the Fort Worth diocese, and probably a rare case in which outmigration of conservatives leaves behind a substantially more progressive diocese which takes such action.

The denomination-wide changes apparently aren’t large enough thus far to cause anything other than sporadic reorientation. Specifically, total U.S. membership of active baptized members in 2007 was 2,154,572, according to the 2008 National Council of Churches Report. That indicates a 4.15% decline from the NCC’s figure for 2006. ()

Along the same lines, Wikipedia reports:

In recent years many mainline denominations have experienced a decline in membership.[74] Once changes in how membership is counted are taken into consideration, the Episcopal Church’s membership numbers were broadly flat throughout the 1990s, with a slight growth in the first years of the 21st century.[73][75][76][77][78] A loss of 115,000 members was reported for the years 2003–5, which has been attributed in part to controversy concerning ordination of homosexuals to the priesthood and the election of Gene Robinson (who is openly gay) as Bishop of New Hampshire.[79]

Or, looking at the 2009 edition of the Yearbook of American & Canadian Churches, we find that decline in Episcopal Church membership (1.76%) was comparable to Presbyterian Church:USA (2.79%), United Church of Christ (6.01%) and Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (1.35%).

This implies that the changes which have occasioned uproar apparently took place because there was substantial support for them in the church at large.

Advertisements

October 28, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment

  1. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Friendfeed by baptistplanet: Formed in a 1983 administrative division of the large and growing Episcopal Diocese of Dallas, and stripped of most of its conservatives in a series of actions following consecration of an openly …

    Trackback by uberVU - social comments | October 28, 2009


Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

%d bloggers like this: