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There's more to the story of Orthodox Anglican churches than gay Episcopal bishops

Gay bishops aren't why people are leaving the Episcopal Church.

I read the Sun's front page article by Doug Donovan regarding Church of the Ascension ("Small church fights Episcopal diocese over land," Jan. 24) with special interest because just about five years ago a group of some 30 of us left the Episcopal Church and founded our own then small Orthodox Anglican congregation, Church of the Resurrection, in Timonium. Ironically, the writer who wrote an article for The Sun about our experience nearly made the same mistake your Mr. Donovan made here some five years later.

At that time, the writer assumed that we left because of the consecration of a gay bishop. We were pretty clear with that writer that we left for reasons much greater than one bishop. We left because the hierarchy of the Episcopal Church had left us with its swing to modify, even deny, much of the story of salvation through Jesus Christ. The writer, to her credit, presented our rationale relatively fairly.

Now here we are five years later and Mr. Donovan writes that congregations choosing to leave the Episcopal Church are "breaking away over issues such as the denomination's support for same-sex marriage and gay clergy, experts say." I would like to know with which experts he spoke. The real experts are those of us who have moved from the denomination and formed an Anglican community.

Let me see if I can help make it clear again for Mr. Donovan and his readers. Congregants who leave the Episcopal Church to join Orthodox Anglican churches are troubled by far greater issues than those which are ascribed to us. We are troubled by a church hierarchy that simply is disassociating itself with what we believe is the inerrant word of God and its clear message that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the source of our salvation.

Vince Clews

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