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UCCtruths

Every denomination needs one of these...

UCC national office in crisis mode: John Thomas lays out strategy

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

In an email to Conference Ministers last week, United Church of Christ President John Thomas laid out the strategy for countering the negative perceptions about the United Church of Christ. Some of this is old news (like the New York Times ad) but there is some new points here. From the email:
Friends:

I hope you all had a good Easter celebration, both spiritually and physically renewing.

I know many of you have been wondering about how we are planning to address the continued media issues surrounding Trinity Church as well as other issues that are likely to arise during the course of the campaign. Our first priority has been to seek to be supportive of Trinity. Several ideas have surfaced and were explored and some of you have been waiting to hear about planning. I'm sorry we weren't able to get back to you but we needed to hear from the folk at Trinity about what would be most useful to them. As you might imagine, in the midst of Holy Week and the other political and media distractions, it has been difficult for them to respond as promptly as we might like. Here's where we are:

1. We had considered a gathering of UCC folk at Trinity next week. However, Trinity has asked us not to do this. Media presence has been intense and intrusive. Reporters have been calling members at home, including those on the home bound list. Threats against Trinity, Jeremiah, and Otis have been made. Security has had to be significantly increased. Events at Trinity, especially worship, is taking place in the midst of a siege of TV trucks, etc. As a result, adding another event that would subject their members to another round of this is not deemed wise. In light of this we have discussed what other ways we might be supportive. What we have agreed to is this: For the weeks between now and Pentecost we will seek to have members of the United Church of Christ who are willing and able to do so to come to Trinity for their 11 a.m. worship. I am in the process of identifying a church leader who can be a representative to offer words of greeting and support during the service. Cally, Linda, Edith, and Steve have agreed to be present for one Sunday. I suspect that most of those who come will be from the Chicago area; I will be in touch with Jorge Morales about this as soon as I am able. We will also prepare an invitation that you can send out to folk in your conference.

2. We have discussed with Trinity a press conference in Chicago, tentatively set for next Thursday. Participants would be Otis Moss, myself, and Michael Kinnamon of the National Council of Churches. The focus of this would be a statement calling on all who are involved in the political process - candidates, media, campaign workers, etc. - to respect the sacred space of our churches and our church communities. In light of what Trinity has been experiencing, we believe it is important that our congregations and denominations not be seen merely as fair game for scoring political points. This would be seen by Trinity as support, and would also set a wider context. We are awaiting confirmation from Otis Moss on this; Michael has agreed to be present if the press conference happens. We may also try to place an op ed piece in relation to this. Should I go to Chicago, I have also expressed a desire to visit with Jeremiah if that would be welcomed. I'll let you know as soon as I have confirmation of plans.

3. Recognizing that all of our churches are dealing with the turmoil from this, Steve Sterner has written a letter to pastors. The letter is attached and I would be grateful if you would use your electronic networks to make this available to as many of your pastors as possible.

4. We are working on a YouTube "introduction to the UCC" which we will send to media outlets and make available on the web. The effort here is to present a broader picture of the UCC. It will be crafted from new narration wrapped around existing footage.

5. Ben Guess is in conversation with Gotham about the production of a print ad that could be placed in a major newspaper and also be available to all of our churches for placement in local papers. Again, this would be an effort to interpret the witness of the UCC in a more honest and holistic way. We will need to do fundraising for purchasing space in a major paper and paying for production. This would need to be coordinated with you as there may also need to be local and/or regional fund raising for local placement. We have no budget for this so we will need to have the capacity to seek funds for our costs here.

6. We are designing a major interpretation piece for use as we move ahead in anticipation of attacks against the UCC related to some of our justice commitments. We anticipate these attacks continuing and intensifying as long as Barack Obama's This would be on the web, with several "layers" moving from the general to the specific. We imagine an introduction to the UCC, and then links to specific issues, each of which would be described with further links to more detailed documentation. Broad themes here would include: Human Rights (Wilmington 10, Puerto Rican Political Prisoners, Death Penalty, etc.), Environmental (Pastoral Letter on the Environment, Vieques, Toxic Waste and Race), Inclusion (glbt issues, gay marriage,) Women's Issues (ordination, language, etc.), Global Justice (Israel-Palestine, Hawaiian Apology, etc.). Don't hold me to this exact list or design. We are now seeking to contract with a seasoned UCC member with journalistic experience who can manage this for us under Ben's supervision. This will need to be ready soon. It will be designed to be a resource for media but also for our own members who will need information quickly when an issue surfaces in the campaign. We will want to work with you to determine the best methods for quick response to issues using this resource once it is available.

7. We continue to respond to media inquiries here. I am grateful to many of you who have alerted us to articles and stories that have appeared in your own settings. I am also grateful for the excellentarticles you have authored for your pastors and congregations. It has been impressive and inspiring!

I think this is as full a picture as I can give you at this time. Let me know if you have questions and please share Steve's letter as widely as possible.

John
He just doesn't get it.
posted by UCCtruths, Wednesday, April 02, 2008

35 Comments:

Wow, James, I guess nothing he does can make you happy.

Conservatives called for Thomas to have more press time -- he's doing that.

Conservatives called for Jeremiah to become involved and speak out -- he's planning on it next week.

Conservatives asked for calls of unity and explaining our diversity -- that has been done.

This whole incident has proven, beyond any doubt, that regardless of what is done by Cleveland nothing will satisfy disgruntled conservatives in the UCC. That has been made very clear.

It's all very disappointing. ;(
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 4:54 PM  
I don't think he does.

... Joe Sixpack
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 5:00 PM  
"Broad themes here would include: Human Rights (Wilmington 10, Puerto Rican Political Prisoners, Death Penalty, etc.), Environmental (Pastoral Letter on the Environment, Vieques, Toxic Waste and Race), Inclusion (glbt issues, gay marriage,) Women's Issues (ordination, language, etc.), Global Justice (Israel-Palestine, Hawaiian Apology, etc.)."

Hey, I must be kind of obtuse, but this looks like the Democrat Party platform. Tell me again what the difference is, please.

... Joe Sixpack
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 5:03 PM  
LOL Anony1 - Thomas hasn't done any of those things. He could go on any of the Fox News shows that play the Jeremiah snippets over and over and defend the UCC at a much lower cost than $200,000 - but he won't. The ad didn't even address the concerns that people have about the UCC. I have no ide what Wright's plans are, but he's been as dodgy as Thomas has been - neither one can stand the heat.

As far as unity goes... I don't see it anywhere in these activities - all I see is Thomas using church members as human shields against the media.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 5:08 PM  
What ad was that first 'anonymous' refering to? Certainly wasn't the one in the New York Times. Like other have said, what a waste of money.
commented by Anonymous J. Johnston, 7:25 PM  
I support Thomas and I think his remarks regarding the Wright controversy were appropriate. I wish more people understood the free pulpit, the historical reality of Black worship and the Black church, but the very incident itself is proof that few people outside our group really understand these things. Most of them, I fear, do not have any inclination to learn about them either! I'm not even sure our nation is ready for this "teachable moment" but I pray we are.

I also feel strongly that we should not blame the victim. In the past 7 years Bush has had the UCC thrown off Yale's campus, has the IRS investigating us, and the UCC has been challenged by the passing of the same-sex marriage resolution. These have represented corporate traumas for our beloved denomination, and no single person -- Thomas or Wright -- should be singled out as a scapegoat. The fact is, these are extremely difficult times for liberal religion, period.

I once heard a Chicago Theological grad speak (a retired social justice minister) and he said, "If you live on the edge you will get cut." By that he meant that it is not easy and often risky to maintain the prophetic tradition and be progressive. Now we are at a time & place that it is simply very, very hard to be who we are but we will not quit, and we must not turn on each other and further damage our noble biblical call.

Unity is our motto. Let us not sink to the backstabbing tactics of our detractors.

Amen?

T J McGiffert
TJ:

To ascribe a lie about the generation of the AIDS virus from the pulpit is false witness... but then to attribute the lie to some historical understanding of African-American churches borders on racism. There is no historical record that suggests that lying from the pulpit is an acceptable practice in any black church I know.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 7:45 PM  
I am not sure whether the government created AIDS. I am not sure if it was incompetence or lack of caring that allowed the levy to break in N.O.

Until you have factual proof that Wright is wrong, it is one man's interpretation of possiblity from a free pulpit in the free church tradition. Last time I checked the origin of the AIDS virus had been traced to Africa and it was assumed (not a scientific process) that men having sex with men brought the virus to America (cf Shilts, And the Band Played On). That is as much hypothesis as is Wright's view. Would you call Shilts a liar also? A homophobe?

The beautiful thing is that in our tradition you can dispute your own pastor publicly and neither the congregation, the Conference, the Association, nor the denomination can stop you -- this is NOT SO in most other Christian denominations. So cut Wright and Thomas if you wish, but relish the tradition our forebears fought and died for to make it possible.

Cherish your opinions but please, cease undermining the very thing that makes our faith noble and free!

TJ
I'm not African-American, but given the history of HIV/AIDS it is hard not to believe that it was constructed and aimed at wiping out African populations. The first victims of HIV in the early 1980s were poor immigrants from Haiti. And as it continued to strike African men (and homosexuals) our government did not perform its mandate to protect public health. It took a LOT of effort on the part of our government to have ignored a crisis as big as AIDS. More Americans had died from it than from the Vietnam War before Reagan mentioned the word "HIV" publicly.

And where are we now 20 years later? African-Americans continue to be hit hard but HIV/AIDS and our public health care system continues to fail them.

The more I hear of Rev. Wright the more I agree with him.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:07 PM  
"I am not sure whether the government created AIDS."

What kind of nonsense logic is that? Can Wright (or you) prove they did?

The regular folks in the pews (and those that didn't know about the UCC until now) can see right through this sort of lunacy... and it hurts our denomination more than any criticism that I can muster up.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 8:11 PM  
James,

Oh, well why didn't you say so before? You will only be happy if Thomas appears on Fox News -- a cable news channel that is watched by about 500,000 people. The NY Times is read, in print, by 1.6 million Americans -- with far more than that reading content on their website. The ad in USA Today and the upcoming press conference will reach more people than Fox News. And better yet, it will reach people who, unlike Fox News viewers, are not committed ideologues.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:13 PM  
None of you know what you are talking about. From NPR:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5450391

Weekend Edition Sunday, June 4, 2006 · Monday marks the 25th anniversary of the first report of AIDS. But only recently have scientists come to conclusions about where HIV came from. The current thinking is that the colonial horrors of mid-20th-century Africa allowed the virus to jump from chimpanzees to humans and become established in human populations around 1930.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:33 PM  
There is no better defense of your arguments James than the responses of TJ, and anon1.

It is truly chilling what people will do to defend the racist hatred of Wright.

When will the UCC understand that their social justice and political platform is destroying the denomination?
commented by Blogger Paul Jamieson, 8:37 PM  
Anon:

Your numbers aren't even close...

FOXNEWS O'REILLY 2,979,000
FNC HANNITY/COLMES 2,280,000
FNC GRETA 1,896,000
CNN KING 1,640,000
FNC HUME 1,530,000
CNN COOPER 1,417,000

CNN or Fox - take your pick - either is larger than the circulation for the New York Times.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 8:37 PM  
James,

Those are peak numbers during primetime. But you knew that, didn't you? The network news will draw about 10 times that number (depending on the night). So yes, by clamoring for Fox News you are showing your ideological bias. The NY Times was selected as it remains the country's national newspaper with an influence far beyond its circulation numbers.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 9:09 PM  
Anon:

You may want to look around UCCtruths a bit before commenting... all I've been talking about is the prime time talk shows who pumped up the Wright stuff in the first place. The logic is that it would have been cheaper than the NYT ad and would have more impact. He could pick CNN or Fox - no difference to me... still cheaper than the ad.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 9:33 PM  
Gentlemen...and Gentle Folk:

The church universal is called to speak the truth, in love.

Reading JT's battle plan for managing the "image" of the UCC provides keen insights into just how secularized the inner-sanctum of the denomination has become.

If I were to close my eyes and substitute "Phillip-Morris" for United Church of Christ... JT's missive would sound like the soundtrack for "The Firm" or some other twisted thriller.

The UCC is in full-spin damage control over its political agenda, and I'm gathering that many folks across the country are tuning in since so many news trucks are camped outside Trinity.

P.T. Barnum was correct in noting that everyone loves a circus (or a train wreck).

JT writes as though the circus is a media creation. Alas, whatever trouble the national body of the UCC finds itself in is the self-inflicted result of more than 30 years of spiritual, moral, and theological neglect.

The gospel calls the church to speak the truth, in love. There appear to be many "whoppers" in Wright's sermons... and most folks are wondering where the "love" is, too.

I'm betting this doesn't go away very soon for the UCC... with or without Obama on the national scene.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 10:09 PM  
James is right - if Thomas wants to make an impact, he should go on the talk shows.
commented by Anonymous Garrett, 9:56 AM  
Great picture, btw! I almost got slain in the spirit just looking at it.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 10:30 AM  
JT looks like he's caughy up in the "Great Barama Drama."
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 1:14 PM  
On Trinity Sunday, God willing, I will be saying the Athanasian Creed, a symbol for the last fifteen hundred years of the nature of our essential unity as Christians. I will once more contemplate and confess my sins and once more repent of them. Although I am a miserable sinner, I will once more receive assurance of God's unconditional forgiveness based God's love for us, shown through Christ's suffering, death, and resurrection. In hearing God's word, I will be reminded again of my duty to the law and my salvation in the gospel. I will once more receive the true body and blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

God willing, that's what I'll do on Trinity Sunday.

... Joe Sixpack
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 2:56 PM  
Thomas doesn't get what? That this is having a wide affect on churches? Or on members? That one particular pastor and church who have not been out there trying to convert people to their way of thinking/beleiving is being attacked from all sides by media? Please telll me when John Thomas has used any media resource specifically by name to denounce any particular church and its pastor's sermons that were not part of some wider campaign outside that congregation? That's what you keep saying he needs to do.

You keep suggesting that Thomas go on FoxNews. Why? So he can get the same "opportunity" to share that Rev, Wright did last year when He appeared on Hannity and Colmes we tried to explain what the African-centric congergation was about and the Connity kept trying to accuse him of promoting some sort of reverse racisim and advocating separation of race. ?
http://youtube.com/watch?v=aNTGRL0OJWQ&feature=related
http://youtube.com/watch?v=0FUnBi1i90E&feature=related
Oh wait these links are from this own website so you how fair a platform that would give him.

Perhaps effort would be better spent applauding the effort to have May 18th be a day when pastors address the racial issues underlying all this. Perhaps it would be better to spend time and effort supporting a church that did not seek this publicity, that is being scruntinized as an individual congregation of a candidate unlike any other that I can recall instead of beating the "National just doesn't get it" drum AGAIN.
Deb K.
commented by Anonymous Deb K., 6:33 PM  
Deb:

This really isn't as compicated as you would like it to be. To your first set of questions, Thomas claims "We are not going to tolerate racist language from the pulpit" in his RNS interview yet he tolerates a UCC pastor using terms like "garlic noses" to describe Italians. Not very prophetic by any standard.


In his Fox interview, Wright didn't want to answer the questions posed to him and instead, tried the all to familar 'change the subject and deflect' strategy that Thomas is trying now.

Trinity Sunday as it's proposed is a joke. It wouldn't have happened or been planned if it weren't for a single pastor from a bygone era making assinine comments. So... now we all get the benefit of being lectured to, er... preached to about the need for a conversation about race that started a long time ago and will still go on and evolve.

Thomas doesn't get it because he this really isn't about race, it's about redefining and reshaping the public outrage against Wright, Trinity and the UCC as a whole.
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 7:52 PM  
James, May 18th isn't a joke, it's a charade.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:09 PM  
I really resent being told what I should preach on any given Sunday. I've been preaching for 25 years, and in that time I've preached often on racism. But I almost certainly won't on Trinity Sunday, because issues of appropriate lines of authority matter as well. John Thomas is NOT the pope, and has no business issuing edicts as to what happens in local parishes on a particular Sunday.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:12 PM  
What public outrage against the UCC? Do you really think people connect Rev. Wright with the old congregational UCC church down the street? Come on. Probably fewer than 5% of the country even knows what the UCC is.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 11:55 PM  
I hate to say it but that last Anonymous poster is right in so VERY many ways. It's something I've seen even more consistently within the last few years where non-denominationalism has become much more prominent.

I think it's Thomas is making a bit of a mountain out of a molehill. I suspect that it would be better for him to be directly talking with (not to) the local conferences/congregations about this rather than try and defend Wright. I think Rev. Otis is doing a good enough job on that count.
commented by Blogger Athene, 10:25 PM  
Athene & others... a month ago I would have said you were right - much of the public didnt know much about the UCC... but they sure do now! Do you think the national office would be spinning it's wheels on this if it wasn't anything?
commented by Blogger UCCtruths, 3:52 AM  
James,

How you noticed that web stats for UCC.org? There has been a very modest increase in traffic during this issue. The increase in traffic is about 100K per month over what they typically have (check alexa.com). If we deduct the increased amount of traffic from UCC members, we are likely left with about 50,000 at MOST that have viewed our denominational website due to this issue. That is HARDLY "much of the public".

Also, if you do a blogsearch in Google for "Obama" and "Wright" you'll notice that the vast majority of blogs are referring to Obama's church as "Trinity United" or simply "Trinity". They are not making the connection with the UCC.

Again, the majority of mainliners in this country could not tell you what the UCC is. I expect if you ask what the UCC is from the average person they will tell you "Uniform Commercial Code". ;)
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 3:05 PM  
First, John Thomas did not issue an edict, to the 25 year pastor who said he/she resents being told what to preach on a given Sunday. He made a request of the pastors- and that is in line with our polity. I haven't been threatened with loss of ministerial standing, arrest, or even one less cookie at coffee hour by JT if I don't preach on race issues on May 18.

If you want to know what a Pope can and cannot do, please talk to you your brethen in the Roman Catholic church who do have edicts handed done that they ignore at their own ministerial peril, from their Bishop, Cardninal or the the Pope, who tells them where they will serve and for how long, who they can serve the Eucharist to, when they may provide First Communion and Confirmation and other edicts and dictates that they must follow. John Thomas is hardly acting like a Pope or even a bishop in this matter.
commented by Anonymous deb kunkel, 4:15 PM  
(if this is a double post, I apologize- I'm having difficulty with the internet the last few days giving me confirmations that things have been accepted as sent).

James: from the RNS interview:

"Q: Have you talked to Rev. Wright since the situation erupted?

A: I have not. He's been away and not available for comment.
.....
Q: Had you ever heard him say things as controversial as those now circulating in sermon blips, such as the AIDS reference?

A: No, I never heard that kind of language firsthand.
.....

Q: You've said it's not the UCC's place to censure its pastors. But are there occasions when you would step in and say something to a pastor who was using anti-gay language, for instance?

A: There are certain givens: We are not going to tolerate racist language from the pulpit. There are certainly diverse perspectives on human sexuality in our denomination, but we are not going to tolerate rhetoric about gays and lesbians that's demeaning or will incite prejudice and violence.

Q: Have you ever confronted a pastor over something like that?

A: No. I've never had occasion to do that."

So it isn't complicated as you said 1)John Thomas has not been able (at the time of the RNS interview you referenced) to talk to Rev. Wright since Rev. Wright was not available (I believe he's been out of the country). 2) John Thomas has not heard before these airings this particular language from Rev. Wright (and I'm still not sure what kind of racial insult garlic nose is- and I'm Italian) so prior to this he had no reason to confront him.
3) John Thomas states that he, in fact, has never had to confront a pastor in such a case. (which I'm reading as not making a direct confrontation to "hey you Rev. XYZ, you said in your sermon on Sunday that all hound dogs are lazy - we do not accept such slurs against any breeds of dogs in our denomination"). As far as I know, that is true. If you know of any time he has called for the official censure or the review of ministerial standing of a particular UCC pastor by name in public for what they have preached in a sermon, please let me know, and I'll agree that he should do the same with Rev. Wright. And I mean that sincerely- I hope you know that. I'm willing to admit that I'm wrong, but I just don't see that here.

I don't think that you are proposing is that John Thomas join in the chorus of those who are calling both Rev. Wright and Trinity UCC in Chicago racist and want to leave it at that, are you? I still see the response of the UCC at this time to be multi-prong address to a multi-prong solution: to the obvious public relations isssues here; the threats and verbal attacks against a congregation that has a long and celebration worthy history of reaching out and helping in it's community and beyond its geographic and racial/ethnic/class boundaries; and the return to the spotlight of the deep issues that we as a country and as Christians need to still address when it comes to issues of race. Instead of "trying to change the subject" I see a push (as with the Rev. Wright interview with Hannity and Colmes) to take the conversation deeper beyond soundbites (this is a racist church because it celebrates black achievements and culture, uplifts black understandings and tries to install pride in the people about their background) to one that can move us forward again in reconcilling us into the one family of God that we are suppose to be. So I still say that John Thomas does get it, and gets it more than many here are willing to even consider giving him credit for.
commented by Anonymous deb kunkel, 4:45 PM  
Deb,

One doesn't need to be Italian to recognize that Rev. Wright's "galic noses" comment is a bigoted ethnic slur. Also, one doesn't have to be any particular skin shade to recognize that the "Black Value System" that was part of the issue in the Hannity and Colmes interview lifts one skin shade/ethnic group up above all others in the life of Trinity.

Jeff
commented by Blogger jeffnfairchild, 5:35 PM  
So, I take it Garrison Keillor is a terrible racist Scandinaviaphobe as he frequently makes fun of "stoic" Norwegians and "reticent" Swedes. We better let the Southern Poverty Law Center know about the Prairie Home Companion. ;)

And we all better watch out for that nefarious hate group "The Sons of Norway" who attempt to advance their racist vision by preserving their cultural heritage.

Later guys, I'm off to drink a beer at my local Irish pub and take my kids to Hebrew class.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 8:33 PM  
I say let James and the rest of the folks who love it here at ucctruths to have their way.

Here's what they really seem to want:

1. JT should openly denounce JW on a major media outlet. Thereby playing into the crass media game as the media sets the rules. Also thereby throwing a retired minister, who despite his several crazy moments has overall been an extraordinary pastor, under the bus. Very Christian indeed.

2. JT should then denounce himself as a materialist, poer hungry fraud, not a genuine follower of Christ, and then promptly resign lest the church actually start to make a difference int he world.

3. The home office should then promote a slate of meek, mostly conservative folks into key positions.

4. The new home office staff should stay in cleveland, and confine their leadership to issuing UCC cookbooks and running the pilgrim press (albeit purged of social justice titles).

Then and only then can our denomination resume it's long, slow, painless death and go in peace.

No thank you. I've been told from so many waving fingers how the national office is killing this denomination with all this political activism, LGBT concerns etc. Then I look at my ONA congregation and see our attendance doubled from where it was a few years ago, with nearly three times the vital ministry and mission programming in our community. And even if advocating for social and economic justice leads to our demise, well, our church was founded by a savior who did just that and calls us not to fear doing the same. When Jesus talked about the Kingdom of God, he wasn't talking about a nice parlor with dainty cookies and bad coffe. He was talking about a place where the poor, widow, orphan and outcast were number #1. It was controversial, impolite and dangerous. And they crucified him for it.

JT has done a masterful job of not stooping to the Faux News level of making this all about JW and his incindiary comments. Nor has he given in to the shallow logic of so many conservatives who still cling to this denomination, failing to see that the freedom of their own pulpits and the responsibility for self-direction involved is really what scares them the most.

His call for a move to a broader, deeper conversation about race places the church where it truly belongs, defined on it's own terms.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 5:43 PM  
Anon. (34)
Lesee...
1) If I had made the comments JW did about Italians, other non-blacks, but targeted minorities with them,and then gave David Duke a lifetime achievement award, do you not think that JT would set a land speed record for the fastest time to a mic to denounce my words? I thought so...

2) I'm not denouncing (nor is anyone else that I know of) JT for being a power-hungry materialist. If he'd resign, though, I'll shed no tears. Personally, I find him to be arrogant and lacks an irenic spririt. Kinda like you view George Bush. :)

3) Would it be great sin to make a slate of key positions, more representative of the mix of folks we have in the pews? Or is that your elitism showing, again?

4)No one I know of is advocating the folks in Cleveland stay at home. In fact, it would be good if some of them would get out of the house a bit more often and interface more with the folks who are their partners in ministry.

Congrats. Your parish is doing vital work. So is mine. Let's rejoice in that, shall we?

Let me guess, you're just a PBS kind of person living in a Fox News world, right? LOL.
We, in the hoi polloi, take notice of your condescension.
commented by Anonymous Anonymous, 4:58 PM  

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