The Episcopal Bishop of San Francisco ‘Welcomes’ the Catholic Archbishop

The Bishop of the Episcopal Church in San Francisco, Marc Andrus, has issued an outrageous statement “welcoming” the new Catholic Archbishop of San Francisco, Salvatore Cordileone, who will be installed on Thursday, October 4. In the process of saying “how do you do”, the Episcopalian church leader insults Cordileone over his stance in support of marriage. Imagine that. The Episcopal leader also extends the hand of welcome to Catholics who may not like Cordileone to come home from Rome. It wouldn’t exactly be charitable to reply, “Don’t let the church door hit you on the way out”, so I don’t expect Archbishop Cordileone to say what many of the rest of us would be tempted to say. Meanwhile, it’s the Episcopal church that continues to hemorrhage members. I can’t help but think it must, ironically, have something to do with the church’s leaders’ wrongheaded understanding of inclusivity. In any event, Archbishop Cordileone must publicly be criticized before his installation by his Episcopalian neighbor because the former had the courage to say, following the teaching of Jesus Christ, that “a man shall leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh”. I’ll let pass the opportunity to gloss the text with lengthy commentary about the origin of Anglicanism in the deeds of a monarch who also had trouble, in another direction, grasping the meaning of that same text.

“Is this a church … or …?”, Mr Roper, in his Lutheran phase, might unecumenically ask of Bishop Marc.

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Mark Brumley is president and CEO of Ignatius Press.