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4.24.2005    |    ...but a soft, chewy center...
No, not a Tootsie Pop, but the new, unimproved, dean of the Church of the Fluffy Bunny in Washington DC. Otherwise known as the National Cathedral, a rather big, imposing pile of bricks in Northwest DC, where the wealthy white folk live. If they could afford real estate prices there.

The occasion is the installation of a new Episcopalian priest as dean of the Cathedral. I'm not sure what standing this particular priest has among the Episcopal hierarchy, but I assume it's some sort of an honor. I suppose we should be thankful that the Rev. Samuel T. Lloyd III isn't a druid. But, he'd likely welcome a pagan to the altar to be his co-celebrant.

From the Washington Post story on the new dean's installation, we learn that "[w]hat is missing in this public discourse is a generous-spirited, open-minded, intellectually probing, compassionate Christian faith." Well, the Episcopalians are nothing if not "open-minded." It gets worse. Much worse. From the Post:
I believe," he [Lloyd] said from the flower-draped pulpit, "this cathedral is called to be a major voice of a faith that is firm at the center and soft at the edges . . . a faith that embraces ambiguity, that honors other faiths . . . a faith that insists that Christ's values be embodied in the social order."
Lloyd lied. He said that his faith is "firm at the center." Nonsense. It's soft and chewy. How else to describe what also took place at this installation of a supposedly Christian priest in a supposedly Christian church:
There were readings not only from the Bible but from the Koran and from the Torah, by a Muslim chaplain and a rabbi.
The Torah is cool, obviously. Although it's got that harsh God of vengeance thing going. Even so, Torah is one of the rocks on which our Christian faith is founded. So far so good. But the Koran? This is a book that denies Christ is the Son of God. Denies he died for our salvation. Specifically denies the very basis for our Christian faith.

I don't expect Jews or Muslims to worship as Christians. I do expect Christians to do so. Lloyd, by his presiding over a ceremony that "honors other faiths" thereby, in part, denies his own. A man may believe that Christ is our savior, or not. Once one believes, his path is set. This is non-negotiable. Call it names ("fundamentalist"), but don't deny its truth. Your center must be rock-solid, and based on redemption in Christ Jesus. Many things are negotiable. This is not if you wish to be a Christan.

Reach your own conclusions as to whether the new dean, and all who applaud his approach, are Christians or not.

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About this site and the author

Welcome. My name is John Luke Rich, (very) struggling Christian. The focus here is Christianity in its many varieties, its fussing and feuding, how it impacts our lives and our society, with detours to consider it with other faiths (or lack thereof).

Call this blog my way of evangelizing on the internet.

Putting it differently, we're only here on this earth a short time. It's the rest of eternity that we should be most concerned about. Call it the care and feeding of our souls.

I was born Jewish, and born again in Christ Jesus over thirty years ago. First as a Roman Catholic; now a Calvinist by persuasion and a Baptist by denomination. But I'm hardly a poster boy for doctrinal rigidity.

I believe that Scripture is the rock on which all Christian churches must stand -- or sink if they are not so grounded. I believe that we are saved by faith, but hardly in a vacuum. That faith is a gift from God, through no agency on our part -- although we sometimes turn a deaf ear and choose to ignore God's knocking on the door.

To be Christian is to evangelize. Those who think it not their part to evangelize perhaps haven't truly understood what our Lord told us in Matthew 28. We must preach the Gospel as best we are able. Using words if necessary.

Though my faith waxes and wanes, it never seems to go away. Sometimes I wish it would, to give me some peace of mind. But then, Jesus never said that walking with Him was going to be easy...

Final note: I also blog as Jack Rich on cultural, political and other things over at Wrong Side of the Tracks

Thanks for stopping by.