frgavin on September 12th, 2010

A noted Episcopal church historian recently told me that what distressed him about the current state of the Episcopal Church was not so much the heresy and false teaching – although that was obviously a concern – but that the aggregate intelligence level of Episcopal priests seems to be dropping a notch with each passing week.

Case in point: The Rev. Patricia Templeton writing at Episcopal Life Online:

Like many Americans I watched the news last weekend and saw the pictures of people gathered on the mall in Washington, D.C., at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial.

There conservative talk show host Glenn Beck stood at Lincoln’s feet, looked out across the crowd and declared, “America today begins to turn back to God.”

As I listened to him speak, it suddenly became clear to me. Glenn Beck and I may both call ourselves Christians, but we don’t worship the same Christ or the same God.

The God whom I worship is a God who frequently reminds us that we live out our faith in large part through our relationship with the other – by showing hospitality to strangers, by loving our neighbors and our enemies, by reaching out to those on the margins of society.

Beck and his cohorts build their following by promoting a fear of the other, a fear that is in full bloom across much of our country.

So many problems with Templeton’s screed… so little time. So just to hit the high points:

– Of course Glenn Beck’s God is not your God. Beck is a Mormon. So unless your belief in God includes what’s included in the Book of Mormon… well, yeah – you’re worshiping different Gods. First-year seminary students know that much.

– As it happens, Beck does not oppose gay marriage, so on the One True Test of Inclusiveness and Tolerance, he’s on your side, sweetheart.

– Templeton invokes Martin Luther King as a way of rebuking Beck. She leaves out the part where Alveda King, his niece, spoke at Beck’s rally.

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