The rector of St. Paul’s Memorial, Charlottesville writes of his appointment by Bishop Shannon Johnston to the R-14 Task Force (which reminds me so much of the R-7 Task Force, also in the Diocese of Virginia, which actually met for regularly for SEVEN years and discovered that the two worldviews are incompatible and that group dissolved without consensus) which has once again been charged with examining the issues surrounding same sex blessings, this time – as articulated by the Rev’d James Richardson – with the expectation that the diocese will move forward toward implementation of the now authorized views of General Convention. One does wonder, however, how much the Archbishop of Canterbury’s recent letter will influence R-14 and the people of the Diocese of Virginia?
Bishop Shannon Johnston, of the Diocese of Virginia, has appointed me to a task force of 11 people — six lay and five ordained — who will soon examine the issues surrounding same-sex blessings and, hopefully, chart the way forward for this diocese in the next year. That is my hope.
The panel was commissioned at the Diocesan Council (convention) in January, and has adopted for its name the neutral-sounding title of the resolution that set it up — “The R-14 Task Force.” The bishop finished appointing the members in May. The first meeting is set for June 19, followed by another meeting July 17.
I will not be present at the first meeting, but I plan to attend via Skype or telephone connection. I will keep you posted in this space as fully as I can on how this develops. The deadline for the completion of our work is November 1, and I see no reason why we cannot meet the deadline. Other dioceses have impaneled similar task forces and are already finished; much of the research we’ve been asked to do has been done elsewhere; the Diocese of Virginia has a considerable volume of work of its own to draw upon, having had several committees and task forces looking at various sides of the topic for years.
Read it all here.