Episcopal Diocese of Rochester
Joy in Christ, a way of life

ROC Episcopal General Convention / Day Four

“The opposite of love is not hate. The opposite of love,” said Presiding Bishop, Michael Curry, at a revival in Austin, Texas, “is selfishness.” Bishop Curry roamed the platform in the Palmer Center that sits on the Colorado River in downtown Austin, followed around by Spanish Interpreter, Dinorah Padro, who mirrored Bishop Curry’s movements, tone, and expressions with impeccable precision. You might call it homiletical dancing. Curry went on to say that, “Selfishness… puts me in the center of the world, and you and God and everybody else on the periphery….” It was an important message, and a faithful reminder to a diverse body of Episcopalians that decisions and deliberations must be focused on the God who is, as Bishop Curry reminded, “Father, Son and Holy Spirit,” the God revealed in Jesus of Nazareth.

It is the mission of the Gospel that the Episcopal Church is called to inhabit. Even so, Episcopalians are a diverse bunch, as Bishop Curry noted in his homily. But Life, the life of Christ, is for all “[I]n John’s gospel,” Bishop Curry reminded in his sermon, “he says, ‘I am resurrection and I am life.’ He says in the fourteenth chapter, ‘I am the way, and the truth and the life.’ In the tenth chapter, ‘I have come that you might have life.’ And then at the end of the gospel, I’ve written all these things so that you might believe and have life! The whole point,” said Bishop Curry, “is life! Life abundant meant for each. Life for rich folk, and life for poor folk. Life for Democrats, and life for Republicans. Life for Independents! Life for Deputies! Life for Bishops! Life for everybody! Life! Life! Life!”

It’s hard to avoid getting stirred up by one of Bishop Curry’s sermon, even for Episcopalians. Perhaps it is time for the Episcopal Church to inhabit this “revival moment.” Perhaps it is time for Episcopalians to get a little more excited about being part of this Jesus movement. I wonder what a truly Episcopal Revival might look like, whereby we enjoin ourselves fully to the movement of the Spirit without forgetting what it means to be Anglicans. Sounds like an exciting prospect, so long as we “Go,” said Bishop Curry, and live it.