Word: Last night, the United Methodist Church elected Rev. Dr. Karen Oliveto to be a Bishop in the Western Jurisdiction. It is a long-coming victory. She is a lesbian. Her wife stood behind her as Karen made her acceptance speech. This is something we have long strived for. What made this a most significant and moving moment was the leadership from three candidates alongside Karen--Rev. Siosifa Hingano, Rev. Skip Strickland, and Rev. Dr. Dottie Escobedo-Frank. There were originally 9 candidates. There are 100 votes. Someone must gather a 2/3 majority of the votes. So there is vote after vote after vote as the field winnows and the votes disperse among the remaining candidates. Hingano withdrew prior to the 7th ballot. Strickland, the 16th ballot. Escobed0-Frank before the 17th ballot.
Theology is made up of two words – theos and logos. So strictly speaking, it is “words about God.” And I would venture that theology is foundation to our faith. What we think about God comes before our particular praxis. I understand this by looking at two of the extreme positions in religion – that of the divine being a totally hands-off kind of God (historically, the divine watchmaker-God sets things into motion and just watches it tick, tick, tick away) or that of being a total involved kind of God (like a puppetmaster). The watchmaker God allows us to have complete and full freedom to make our choices while being totally uninvolved in our daily living. All religions have their flavor of this type of God. In this flavor, the human/divine relationship is one of worshipping an uninvolved