Saturday, November 3, 2007


What a week of sad, unnecessary news stories...

Oct 31,, a LGBT news service I tend to check daily once I’ve feasted on my regular menu of LGBT faith blogs, reported...

Wa Republican Resigns in Gay Hustler Scandal
Nothing really new here, especially when it comes to the antics of Republican party members- this one voting against two successful LGBT rights laws- only to be caught out in their private lies. What was particularly sad was the duplicity which ended up with a gay man charged with- you guessed it- blackmail...

Same day, same source
Royal to be Tied For Assaulting American Who Refused His Sexual Advances
Another sad tale of a public figure, denying being gay; this time the violence actually got physical and very ugly...

Nov 1, All Saints Day, the New York Times reported a story which really got me thinking about the bullies of the patriarchy
In Rape Case, a French Youth Takes on Dubai
And sadly, there’s really not much new in this story either, though Alexandre Robert, the incredible young man, taking on the state of Dubai is only a heroic 15years old.
The NY Times reports

Just after sunset, Alex says he was rushing to meet his father for dinner when he bumped into an acquaintance, a 17-year-old native-born student at the American school, who said he and his cousin could drop Alex off at home.
There were, in fact, three Emirati men in the car, including a pair of former convicts ages 35 and 18, according to Alex. He says they drove him past his house and into a dark patch of desert, between a row of new villas and a power plant, took away his cellphone, threatened him with a knife and a club, and told him they would kill his family if he ever reported them...

Alex and his family were about to learn that despite Dubai’’s status as the Arab world’’s paragon of modernity and wealth, and its well-earned reputation for protecting foreign investors, its criminal legal system remains a perilous gantlet when it comes to homosexuality and protection of foreigners.
The authorities not only discouraged Alex from pressing charges, he, his family and French diplomats say; they raised the possibility of charging him with criminal homosexual activity, and neglected for weeks to inform him or his parents that one of his attackers had tested H.I.V. positive while in prison four years earlier...

““They tried to smother this story,”” Alex said by phone from Switzerland, where he fled a month into his 10th-grade school year, fearing a jail term in Dubai if charged with homosexual activity. ““Dubai, they say we build the highest towers, they have the best hotels. But all the news, they hide it. They don’’t want the world to know that Dubai still lives in the Middle Ages.””...

United Arab Emirates law does not recognize rape of males, only a crime called ““forced homosexuality.”” The two adult men charged with sexually assaulting Alex have pleaded not guilty, although sperm from all three were found in Alex...

Most infuriating to Alex and his mother, Veronique Robert, is that police inaccurately informed French diplomats on Aug. 15, a month after the assault, that the three attackers were disease-free, the diplomats say. Only at the end of August did the family learn that that the 36-year-old assailant was H.I.V. positive. The case file contains a positive H.I.V. test for the convict dated March 26, 2003.
““They lied to us,”” Ms. Robert said. ““Now the Damocles sword of AIDS hangs over Alex.””
So far the teenager has not tested positive for H.I.V., but he will not know for sure until January, when he gets another blood test six months after the exposure.
A doctor examined Alex the night of the rape, taking swabs of DNA for traces of the rapists’’ sperm. He did not take blood tests or examine Alex with a speculum. Then he cleared the room and told Alex: ““I know you’’re a homosexual. You can admit it to me. I can tell.””
Alex told his father in tears: ““I’’ve just been raped by three men, and he’’s saying I’’m a homosexual,”” according to interviews with both of them.
The doctor, an Egyptian, wrote in his legal report that he had found no evidence of forced penetration, which Alex’’s family says is a false assessment that could hurt the case against the assailants.
In early September, after the family learned about the older attacker’’s H.I.V. status and the French government lodged complaints with the United Arab Emirates authorities, the Dubai attorney general’’s office assigned a new prosecutor to the case. Only then were forensic tests performed to confirm that sperm from all three attackers had been found in Alex.
Alex stayed in Dubai in order to testify against his attackers, and went back to school in September, despite suffering unsettling flashbacks.
In early October, however, the family said, their lawyer warned Alex that he was in danger of facing charges of homosexuality and a prison term of one year...
Enough to get the Saints we were celebrating, weeping.
Depression, murder & attempted suicide; none of which would have occurred if not for the homophobia and the objectification of self drummed into so many of us at an early age.
What really breaks my heart when reading this report is that Grant Harris actually thought that by murdering his parents he would be sparing them the shame of his planned suicide.

So much unnecessary suffering
So much frightened ugliness
I guess it was almost inevitable the bullies of the patriarchy came to mind.

I mean do they ever stop long enough to even hear the silence?

Does the word 'consequence' ever enter their consciousness? (see Matthew 7:16)

Do they ever even wonder where all this self-righteous posturing, acrimonious rant and rage comes from within themselves?

Are they ever momentarily blindsided by the intellectual dishonesty which makes a select few verses of Scripture their make-or-break issue for the Communion- according to them at least.

'Consequence' 'By their fruits ye shall know them'

The Patriarchy has a lot to be held accountable for-and I'm willing to start here and now.

Countless generations of gay and lesbian men and women, created in the image and likeness of the true living God; taught by those claiming to embody Christ's saving grace to make of their lives ghettos of shame, fear and self-loathing.
To do violence to themselves and to denigrate their God-given capacity to love and to ennoble life.
Talented, beautiful lives sold short, their gifts and talents plowed under by the hateful self-righteousness of those claiming a monopoly on the divine.
And how many young lives, precious in the eyes of God, cut short in the silent scream of despair?

Of course, it doesn't end there: there's also the ugly violence and fear too of our bashers and murderers have discovered within themselves when they've acted on the Patriarchy's implied call to murder, to bash, to mock and to exclude.

The uglier their pronouncements, the nosier, more disturbed their presence in the councils of the Church the closer the Patriarchy comes to realizing the essential truth that they are their own biggest victim.
It is they themselves who are being bound, who are casting themselves out, who are refusing Christ's unconditional love for His whole Creation.

I grieve regularly for the pain and suffering of those blinded by the gold of ++Peter and +Robert's pectoral crosses.
I weep for those who are being bound up in the straightjacket's of the Patriarchy's frightened rage.
But I also know that in the long run, ++Peter, +Robert, Bruce+ et al will be little more than a nanosecond in the Song of Salvation.

And of course -Praise God- the week didn't end there!

Friday Nov 2 2007 was the fourth anniversary of one of the greatest, most wondrous works of the Holy Spirit in our times- the consecration of 'beloved of God' +V.Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire.

An act I hold to the same standard of 'consequences.'

First the witness and ministry of the man himself who endlessly embodies Christ's love for all humanity- a love 'beyond our wildest imagining.'

Secondly, the wondrous leavening taking place throughout the Communion as courageous, radiant LGBT men and women reclaim their baptism, take their places in the pew, finding their voices to speak and work to a larger vision the Church and Communion.

Thirdly, the countless untold reconciliations going on in families and friendships, as men and women of faith, for the first time question, and then step outside the homophobic assumptions of their parishes and denominations.

Fourth, the wondrous reconfiguration within the provinces of our Communion as the House of the Laity witnesses to the 'mind of the house' in our Canadian Synod, the Ottawa, Montreal and California synods.

Fifth the wondrous underlying truth of Communion itself, which sees radiant men and women of faith such as ++Katherine and ++Fred continuing to speak to the Patriarchy, even as it postures, rattles and roars, on its way to the door.

Sixth, the wondrous network of inclusive spirituality which has grown in this medium- the Internet. Whether it's Integrity U.S.A.'s Susan+ Russell, the awesome Elizaeth+ Kaeton, everybody's Father Jake, Mark+ @ Pedludium, Michael+'s 'From Glory into Glory',John+ Kirkley's 'Meditatio' just to name a few. Mighty blessings all and a radiant leaven in this sacred process of renewal.

Oh, and before anyone dare even suggest the consecration of +Gene New Hampshire might be the cause or vortex for all the ugly noise and threats currently polluting the Communionsphere, let me remind you of the Chapman Memorandum of December 28th 2003.

As time will prove irrefutably, this essentially has nothing to do with +Gene.

The bullies didn't manage to carry it off with their misogynist bluster over the ordination of our sisters-in-faith to the priesthood, so they're trying once more. Same tactics: endless noise, ugly accusation and acrimony and simplistic misrepresentation of both Sacred Scripture and Anglican tradition.

Yes, I shudder at the endless, unnecessary suffering these bullies are causing, but then I also know that in the only context that really matters, this too shall pass.

The only grounds I need for this surety, and I quote
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And that's a consequence I can live with!

Communion is process- Christ unceasingly & unconditionally calling us- the Holy Spirit meeting us in our unconditional humanity- so its inevitable ++Peter, +Robert, Bruce+ et al, we'll all be meeting at Christ's feast- I'll be the one jumping and dancing, absolutely foolish with joy to see you there.

For God's Greatest Blessing always to God's Greatest Glory


No comments: