Rick Warren spoke to the delegates of the ACNA inaugural assembly. He told them God loves all. Among those in the assembly was The Rev. Mary Hays.
“We are to love the people of the world no matter what they believe; we are to not love the value system of the world. And the problem today is lot of Christians are getting that reversed. They love the value system and hate the people,” Warren told the crowd of 800 under a large tent on the lawn of St. Vincent’s Episcopal Cathedral Church in the Dallas-Fort Worth suburb of Bedford. “God has never met a person he didn’t love.”
The implicit reference to gays is obvious enough. But does Warren’s value system include the exclusion of women from the highest ranks of leadership? Check out the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette of June 24:
The Rev. Mary Hays, canon to the ordinary — chief of staff — of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh (Anglican) had one of the most visible roles of an ordained woman in this assembly representing 100,000 people who broke with the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada. She moderated a discussion among 900 people and led them in prayer for the Rev. Warren, a Southern Baptist who addressed the gathering.
Once a prominent leader within the conservative movement in the Episcopal Church, she is the sort of woman who might have been called to be a bishop. But her new church, which hopes to join the 80-million member global Anglican Communion, forbids female bishops pending some future consensus by the Anglican Communion to permit them. Each of the 28 dioceses in the Anglican Church in North America can choose whether or not to ordain women as priests and deacons. Most don’t do so.
“Of course there is disappointment that there is less openness to the ordination of women among some. But we are agreed on the essentials of the faith,” she said.
All of which brings to mind this sermon (audio) by the Rev. Ann Patton, a colleague of Hays’. Patton challenges ACNA to drop the requirement that bishops be male.