The Cathedral of St. Philip - Atlanta, GA

I Pray

An article from the Cathedral Times
by the Very Reverend Samuel  G. Candler

I pray for the General Convention of the Episcopal Church.

I pray for the safety of each of the deputies, clergy, bishops, volunteers, and staff  who devote ten days of their time to this gathering. It will be a gathering of prayer, debate, legislation, laughter, tears, old friends, new friends, excitement, and fatigue. I pray that God's Holy Spirit of grace and mission will be known in each of those moments.

I pray that the Episcopal Church can discern God's mission for us without the extremism and political wrangling which others prefer to focus on. I pray for humility in our speakers. I pray that everyone gets enough sleep (meetings start as early as 7:00 am and last as late as 10:00 pm).

I pray that we can talk seriously"”and passionately"”about issues other than homosexuality. I pray for everyone who has contacted me about how they would prefer I vote. (Except for two letters concerning prevention of cruelty to animals, every letter I have received has been about same-sex unions or about the vote to give consent to Gene Robinson as Bishop-elect of New Hampshire.)

I pray for those who will not like the way I vote. I pray for those who will like the way I vote. I pray for how I will vote!

I pray that folks on opposite sides of resolutions can pass the peace of Christ with one another when the final votes are cast.

I pray for the incredible talent and resources of the Episcopal Church. I pray that resolutions will empower local parishes to be witnesses for Jesus Christ in their communities. We do not need national pronouncements as much as we need local energy! I pray that observers of our Church will know the Spirit of Jesus in our deliberations, and because of our deliberations.

I pray ultimately for the Episcopal Church. I am proud to be a member of this part of the Body of Christ. We are not the only way to be Christian in the world. However, with our ordered and common worship, with our history of orthodox and comprehensive theological thinking, with our ability to be faithful and flexible in interpreting scripture, with our concern for the incarnation of Christ in the world, the Episcopal Church has dynamic Christian gifts to offer the people around us. The world needs us. I have enormous hope for our Church.

Please pray with me. Pray for one another, and pray how we"”here at St. Philip's"”can take the next steps toward Christian community here and serving the world in Christ's name.

Blessings to you, and thanks for all your prayers,

Sam Candler