I would have never expected to hear these words from Dean Zahl. Yet here they are:
What is this "other" hope? It may well be the alternative of becoming a Roman Catholic. If your ecclesiology has survived the end of apostolic life in the Episcopal Church, then you may well consider entering the Roman Catholic Church. This is a very live option for all of us, and is even more attractive in relation to the present Pope.
Read the whole thing here. He seems to be down, himself, on the whole notion of "ecclesiology." But we don't have to be. One of the entral messages of the Gospel is that "things are not as they seem." And that goes for the Church, which often seems in its local particularity to be anything but holy, catholic, or apostolic.
This, too, must be at the bottom of the Lutheran / Catholic debate over infused vs. imputed righteousness. Luther must have thought that righteousness can't be our own, because we seem to all eyes to be so unrighteous. But, thanks be to God, things are not as they seem.