Message from Bishop Jake

Message from Bishop Jake

Dear Friends in Christ, On June 26 the Supreme Court ruled that the right to enter into a civil marriage applies equally to everyone: opposite-sex and same-sex couples. At our General Convention the Episcopal Church authorized trial rites that may be used for same-sex couples. Reactions to the Court’s ruling and the General Convention’s actions range from jubilation to outrage. There has been no shortage of news stories, blog posts, and social media comments on the subject. Unfortunately, much of this talk has resulted in more confusion than clarity. Some commentators seem more interested in fueling anger than in providing clear, rational explanations. One effective way to get at the truth and to regain emotional self-control is to ask a clear question. That question is this: What do the Supreme Court ruling and the actions of General Convention mean in the Diocese of Western Louisiana? We are a majority-traditionalist diocese. And we are also a gracious diocese. There is a place at the table for minority points of view. No congregation, no priest, will ever be forced to perform same-sex marriages. However, we recognize an array of opinions about marriage and make a space for progressive voices. Before the Supreme Court ruled and the General Convention voted, two of our congregations requested permission to use trial liturgies for same-sex blessings. I granted that permission with the clear understanding that there is no expectation for any other congregation to do so. Just as I have asked traditionalists to respect the brothers and sisters with whom they disagree, I have urged our progressive congregations to embody that same respect. Staying together...
A Message

A Message

Dear Friends, As you may have heard, a gunman entered Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, and killed nine people. I bid your prayers for those who were killed and for all those left bereaved and in shock. Please consider adding appropriate prayers in your Prayers of the People on Sunday in addition to those personal petitions that you will be lifting today and in the days that follow. May those who have died rest in peace. May those left in sorrow and loss be comforted and consoled. May the Lord protect others from any further violence. And, perhaps most trying to pray, may our Lord have mercy upon the tormented soul whose hate has led to such violence and destruction. Amen. In Christ’s Love, +Jake The Rt. Rev. Jacob W. Owensby, PhD, DD IV Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana P. O. Box 2031 Alexandria, Louisiana...