At Episcopal General Convention, we see the vast expanse of The Episcopal Church in all her diversity and grandeur.
We worshipped Saturday, July 7 at the Palmer Center in Austin with our Presiding Bishop Michael Curry leading the “revival/renewal” service. It was awesome as thousands of Episcopalians and others gathered from General Convention and many Episcopal churches in Texas. We even were picketed by the Westboro Baptist Church with their message of hate and exclusion. Quite an honor, I would say … not! Love is the message of the God and the Church, not one of hate and division as they seem to represent.
Sunday we went to a rally of the Bishop’s United Against Gun Violence where over 80 Bishops from around the US, including our Fort Worth Bishop Scott Mayer, stood tall and listened to the testimony of a Parkland, FL victim’s family. Philip and April Schentrup spoke about the loss of their daughter on Ash Wednesday, Feb 14, 2018. In their words, “we sent two daughters to school that day and had only one return home….” Can you even being to imagine ….? Carmen, their daughter, shot four times with an AR-15, was one of the 17 murdered by the gunman that day. Today they still grieve and are rebuilding their lives with their two other children.
We also heard from a Abigail Zimmerman, a ninth-grader and Episcopalian from Waco, Texas, who co-led a school walkout March 14. The walkout of over 300 fellow of students (and teachers) solemnly stood and cried as the name and ages of all the victims of the Parkland, FL Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting were read for 17 minutes (one of many nationwide such walk-outs), and then returned to class. With a passionate voice she spoke of anger, hurt, and change we need in this work. With a passion of the young, she demanded change! Can you remember when we had that passion … where did it go? WE need to be change for the world! Our voices as members of the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement are a start to realizing God’s Dream for ALL humanity to live in love and harmony! Love is the answer!