I am still flabbergasted at the Global South's infatuation with numbers, inflated, regurgitated, and created for the sole purpose of the personal gratification of people such as John David Schofield, Robert Duncan, Peter Akinola, Henry Luke Orombi, and Gregory Venables and Peter Jensen.
From the time I first came into the Diocese of San Joaquin these folks starting with John David Schofield have insisted that the way to heaven is through more and more and larger and larger numbers of people coming into the parish/diocese. That motivation has in part led to the idea that any action that might reduce those numbers is morally wrong. So, we get this little ditty from the man closest to virtue:
Bishop Chester Talton of the rump TEC Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin has told diocesan clergy that as of the Sunday of Pentecost, June 12, they may bless what a press release called "sacred unions."
The June 7 release said that, following consideration by the diocese's Equality Commission, "the clergy in the Diocese of San Joaquin may perform blessings of same-gender civil marriages, domestic partnerships and relationships which are lifelong committed relationships characterized by 'fidelity, monogamy, mutual affection and respect, careful, honest communication, and the holy love which enables those in such relationships to see in each other the image of God.' "
Talton's authorization notes that because Episcopal Church canons and California law do not allow same-gender marriage, no diocesan priest may solemnize such a marriage until both sets of laws allow such an act, and the diocesan bishop specifically allows such solemnization. No priest is required to bless same-gender relationships.
San Joaquin's decision came in part, the release said, in response to General Convention Resolution C056 which states that "bishops, particularly those in dioceses within civil jurisdictions where same-gender marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships are legal, may provide generous pastoral response to meet the needs of members of this church."
Now you know why the bulk of this diocese fled TEC and is now a member of the Anglican Church in North America.
One of the hallmarks of the continuing diocese of San Joaquin is we are now connected to the rest of the Episcopal Church. That connection develops into a strong desire to follow Christ particularly as it relates to including ALL of God's children in all of the sacraments -- marriage included. If in doing so it means that we lose some "membership" then so be it. If it means we were to lose all the membership then so be it. There were but a handful at the cross when Jesus died. We recognize that fact.