Yates and Guinness argue by assertion

I have enjoyed watching people who have decided to place themselves under the authority of Archbishop Peter Akinola, a man who freely admits that he recoiled the only time he knowingly touched a gay person, that their departure from the Church isn’t primarily about homosexuality. Having aligned themselves with a man who proudly articulates his bigotry, the leaders of the Truro and the Falls Church now labor to direct the public’s attention away from Akinola and toward the allegedly “real reasons” that they left the Episcopal Church.

Their latest attempt at diversion appears today on the op-ed page of The Washington Post. The piece is notabley notable because it demonstrates the Episcopal and Anglican right’s propensity for confusing assertion with evidence.

In their introduction, the Rev. John Yates and Os Guinness write that: “Fundamental to a liberal view of freedom is the right of a person or group to define themselves, to speak for themselves and to not be dehumanized by the definitions and distortions of others.” They then proceed to distort or oversimplify the position of the Episcopal Church and the intellectual history of the Christian faith in every succeeding paragraph.

To read Yates and Guinness, one would think that the Church has never changed its mind on a controversial moral issue, and that various Christian bodies have never disagreed with one another. One might also think that Roman and Orthodox Catholics are not actually Christians because their Church do not embrace the sola scriptura (scripture only) standard articulated by Yates and Guinness.

This attempt to read the Episcopal Church out of the mainstream of Christianity succeeds primarily in exposing the authors’ own pinched intolerance and their willingness to caricature the beliefs of people whom they do not know in order to justify their own questionable behavior.

In other words, it is about what we have come to expect from them.

Past Posts