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March 8, 2007
It was like the first breeze of spring, so mild a person
is not sure at first that it might not have been imagination: two Anglican announcements. The first was a report from the recent meeting of AWE (Anglican Women's Empowerment), here in New York for the meeting of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. They were women from everywhere. They pledged to remain together, in communion with each other, no matter what. They said that no power on earth was great enough to break them apart, because they had important work to do: the raising up of girls' education and health and well-being today, in order that the mothers and families and societies throughout the world of tomorrow will be strong. They needed each other for this work more than they needed to agree on what the Bible says about sex or who in the church is more important than whom. I don't recall that they mentioned anything about sex at all, in fact. As I recall it, it was the children of the world who were important to them, more important than any prelate. Read that they said at

Thank God.

And the Archbishop of Canterbury had a meeting in South Africa called "Towards Effective Anglican Mission." He said that that it was by serving the poor that we would be known as the Christians we want to be, and that we can always know our service is authentic if we were doing that. The meeting focussed on addressing the U. N. Millennium Development Goals towards the eradication of extreme poverty. At this meeting, too, it seems that the poor were the most important people. They seem not to have talked about sex there, either, or about who reads the Bible correctly. You can read about this meetings, too, at


This is what the Church is: the people of God seeing Christ in one another and serving the poor in His Name. The rest is commentary.

So have another twenty meetings about whether the Church is pure enough for you. Or make it forty -- why not? Make denouncing other peoples' sins your life's work if you want to: most of us have enough of them to keep you busy for years, so knock yourself out.

But some of us will not attend.

An old story, as retold by Jim Gustafson:

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith."
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked, "Which wolf wins?"

The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."
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