Saturday, August 27, 2005

the hysteria of some

The great bogeyman for the Episcopal revisionist is the frightening figure of the fundamentalist. This figure has become even more frightening with the rise of Islamic terrorism. Now revisionists can meld together in their fevered imaginations the figures of William Jennings Bryan and Osama bin Laden to form that terrifying demon who haunts their nightmares—the Episcopal fundamentalist! The fundamentalist is narrow-minded, irrational, aggressive, zealous, fanatical, and very, very dangerous. Like Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator, the fundamentalist can’t be bargained with. He can’t be reasoned with. He doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And he absolutely will not stop until he has taken full control of ECUSA and purged it of his enemies.

The fundamentalist sees everything in black and white and thus is incapable of negotiating questions that do not yield easy answers. The fundamentalist cannot emotionally tolerate ambiguity and paradox. He needs to live in an utterly secure universe where every theological and moral problem has a bright solution. No matter what the cost, the fundamentalist will impose his brutal designs upon the Episcopal Church—unless he is defeated, nay eradicated, first.

Read the whole thing here. Thank you, Fr. Kimel.


J-Tron said...

Well, now, we're all a little bit guilty of manufacturing windmills to do battle with, wouldn't you say? I've certainly heard my fair share of discussion of the "revisionists" and the "crazy liberals" who want to see the Church condoning the marriages of men and goats, all while we snort cocaine off your bible. Then again, I've definitely heard a great deal about the monster of fundamentalism too, which is a much more specific phenomenon than most folks think it is. But this bit you quote from Pontifications comes after a lengthy character assassination aimed at Father Jake (plus a couple cheap shots at BLS). And I find it very hard to have sympathy for folks with a persecution complex while they are still holding the blunt object with which they've just attempted to bludgeon one of my brothers or sisters in Christ. You can't have your cake and eat mine too.

father wb said...

Yes, yes. Paranoia abounds. But it falls to me to take aim at the paranoia of the 'reappraisers', being a 'reasserter'.

Here is what Fr. Kimel said about BLS:

"Ever since the Primates put the Episcopal Church on probation, poor bls of the Topmost Apple, an enthusiastic supporter of the lesbi-gay agenda, has repeatedly declared her withdrawal from the Episcopal Church, and even from Christianity, only to quickly return days later."

Tepid mockery, perhaps. But I would hardly call this a "cheap shot", and certainly not evidence of a "persecution complex" nor an act of "bludgeoning". Its seems, indeed like a pretty accurate analysis, given BLS's own posts. She did say, on March 11, "I can't think of myself as a member of the Christian Church anymore."

I admit that I excerpted Fr. Kimel's piece as a generic analysis of the kinds of things I have heard from my liberal interlocutors in the past (Not you, JT), and not because I have a bone to pick with Fr. Jake. I do, however, share Fr. Kimel's puzzlement at Fr. Jake's post, given what is almost universally agreed to be the definitive ascendency of theological liberalism in ECUSA. Fr. Jake's cries of "hysteria among my enemies!" itself does, to my ears, sound a little hysterical itself. And his suggestion that Christianity might just die out if ECUSA conservatives have their way is CERTAINLY paranoid, no?

Anyway, the main thing is that I thought this post was funny (and it is, at Whitehall, directed at no one in particular). Especially when combined with the fundamentalist werwolf.