Friday, July 28, 2006

Stand Firm: Friday Flashback: Why I Left My Liberal Parish
Bill Boniface's famous letter, re-posted by popular demand.

The Danger to our Church

As you're all aware this is sadly my wife's and my last day at St. Thomas'. Never in my wildest dreams when we came back to this little church after many years away and made the decision to remain in Upper Marlboro for the foreseeable future did I think we'd ever become part of that large group of folks known as "former St. Thomas' parishioners."

But now I have to talk to you from the heart. Families know that to let disagreements go without addressing them slowly destroys the bond of love and trust that holds them together. Ignoring serious disagreements only means that a price will have to be paid some time in the future. And if I didn't think the Episcopal Church's current disagreement would ever force St. Thomas' to pay a huge price in the future - in fact, the price of its very survival - I'd step away from this podium this very moment and simply walk away with the happiness of this gathering to warm me. That would be so easy. But I couldn't ever look you - or even worse, Christ - in the eye again if I did that.

I believe all the responsibilities of a Senior Warden are important, but I think his or her primary responsibility - along with the vestry - is to first and foremost guard the faith. We're a church, after all. We're here because of the faith. Without it, there would be no need for buildings or church suppers, or altar guilds. For the vestry, it's like the meaning behind a doctor's Hippocratic Oath, simply do no harm.

The rest-don't miss this!


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