Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By David W. Virtue

4/14/2009 (5 years ago)

Virtue on Line (www.virtueonline.org)

Her statements are the genocide of the vulnerable and murder say orthodox Episcopal Bishops.

Other thoughtful Episcopal leaders did weigh in saying that Ragsdale's appointment as President and Dean of Episcopal Divinity School (EDS), which still styles itself as an Episcopal Seminary, is little more than an ode to Molech worship.

Other thoughtful Episcopal leaders did weigh in saying that Ragsdale's appointment as President and Dean of Episcopal Divinity School (EDS), which still styles itself as an Episcopal Seminary, is little more than an ode to Molech worship.

Highlights

By David W. Virtue

Virtue on Line (www.virtueonline.org)

4/14/2009 (5 years ago)

Published in U.S.


NEW YORK, N.Y. (Virtue On Line) - The announcement that the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA, has chosen a lesbian, pro-abortion president to lead the seminary has sent shock waves around the Anglican Communion. The appointment of Katherine Hancock Ragsdale highlights a week that also saw TEC bishop-elect Kevin Thew Forrester replace a reading from the New Testament with a reading from the Quran at St. Paul's Marquette, Michigan.

One wonders what Episcopal boundaries and barriers have yet to be crossed that the dying embers of historic Christianity could possibly fan into life. That the Diocese of Massachusetts has a functioning transgendered priest complete with a sex change operation (he appeared at Lambeth 2008) mocks not only marriage, but any notion of what normalcy in sexual matters might mean in The Episcopal Church. Consider, too, that 19 of the 41 resolutions to be presented at GC2009 have to do with normalizing same-sex unions, proposing same sex rites and deep-sixing a resolution - B033 - that restrains further homosexual ordinations into the priesthood. They mock The Episcopal Church as a Christian denomination.

It is abortion, however, that hits the nerve endings of orthodox Episcopalians as it touches on the very issue of life and death itself. The shrill cry of Ms. Ragsdale that "abortion is a blessing" sends true believers into shock and is viewed as particularly heinous, not only for the church, but for the future of the human race. It is hard to imagine even the most hard-boiled pro-choice person advocating the tearing of life from a human body for no other reason than unmitigated selfishness. For them, endangerment of the mother's life, the fetus malformed, and extreme poverty et al might be reasons to abort. For Ragsdale there was no reason, just the unalloyed notion that abortion is not only a right, but a BLESSING. Here is what she said in a sermon recently:

"Let me hear you say it:

Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done.
Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done.
Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done."

Her outrageous statements hit a nerve with a number of Anglican leaders.

Abortion, except in the case where it is indirect and unintended, due to an operation seeking to save the life of the mother, is the unjust taking of an innocent life, The Rt. Rev. Dr. John Rodgers, former Dean of Trinity School for Ministry, told VOL. "It is therefore murder, which is forbidden to Christians by the will and express law of the Lord." Then he tore into Ragsdale: "Feminists such as Dean Ragsdale seem to believe, should the mother for some reason not be pleased with this human life growing in her body, that she has the right to kill the child. However the value of that human life is not grounded in the estimation of the mother but in the purpose and will of God, who called the child into being. Made in His image, the child is precious and is to be protected, nurtured, and raised in the nurture and fear of the Lord. We are to love our neighbors and even our enemies and with the exception of police protection and just warfare we are to seek to do them good and not kill them, much less murder the innocent in the womb.

"The same divine guidance and logic applies to euthanasia. It too is forbidden. The two are linked together in practice as the old saying goes, "The society that gives the mother the right to kill her children will one day give the child the right to kill her mother." Some states in the USA have already brought that to pass. I understand that Holland is far advanced in that practice. One can't help but ask how Jesus maxim, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" fits if one puts oneself in the place of the "other" i.e. the innocent baby waiting to be born. Surely there are other ways to cope with an unwanted pregnancy, given the shortage of children being offered for adoption. God will surely provide a way."

The President and CEO of The American Anglican Council, CANA bishop David C. Anderson told VOL that the leadership of the Episcopal Church (TEC) continues their culture of death by the appointment of The Rev. Dr. Katherine Ragsdale as the sixth and newest president of the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts."Her public statements that 'abortion is a blessing' are the full equivalent of saying that genocide is a good thing, for her stand supports the genocide of the most vulnerable. Her statements and her life witness in this regard stand in opposition to the American Anglican Councilšs statement of faith, which says, 'All human life is a sacred gift from God and is to be protected and defended from conception to natural death.'

"Ragsdale and those who appointed her want to spread their false gospel and pro-abortion agenda to the future priests and bishops of the Episcopal Church. Although her selection seems to be yet another segment in TEC's juggernaut toward self destruction, the AAC is gratified to see that some Episcopal dioceses have rejected TEC's affiliation with the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC) and our prayer is that more TEC dioceses will live into their baptismal covenant to 'respect the dignity of every human being,' including the pre-born. We hope that those dioceses which oppose the genocide of the pre-born would de-list the Episcopal Divinity School from their qualified list, if they havenšt already done so for other doctrinal reasons."

Several Episcopal seminary presidents, approached by VOL, either refused to return e-mail requests for their stand or said flatly that they would "pass" on saying anything about a fellow seminary president. Other thoughtful Episcopal leaders did weigh in saying that Ragsdale's appointment as President and Dean of Episcopal Divinity School (EDS), which still styles itself as an Episcopal Seminary, is little more than an ode to Molech worship. "I haven't the words to respond to this vile, odious (appointment)...well, it speaks for itself. It is quite true that EDS has long been a bastion of leftism rather than a school for training recognizably Christian clerics and this is likely an indication of its undoubted decline into official fever-swamp status. Yet, there are still Episcopalian bishops who send would-be ordinands there and churches who hire those trained by the people who hired this woman and now accept her intellectual, moral, and spiritual leadership."

In a sermon titled "Our Work is Not Done", Ragsdale even went as far as to rip the consciences of doctors and pharmacists who try to opt out of providing medical care, stating "our work is not done. And when a woman becomes pregnant within a loving, supportive, respectful relationship; has every option open to her; decides she does not wish to bear a child; and has access to a safe, affordable abortion - there is not a tragedy in sight -- only blessing. The ability to enjoy God's good gift of sexuality without compromising one's education, life's work, or ability to put to use God's gifts and call is simply blessing."

Ragsdale is living testimony to the late Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI's statements that we live in a culture of death in our contemporary political discourse in many countries, including the United States. Ragsdale even went as far to say that doctors who are not prepared to provide the full range of reproductive health care (or prescriptions) to any woman who needs them shouldn't go into obstetrics and gynecology, or internal or emergency medicine, or pharmacology. Choose another field. She cried.

Ragsdale let her lesbian tendencies shine through when she said that any argument that puts men alone at the center - for good or for bad --– on any discussion of women's reproductive health ends up being all about men. This is not feminism. Nor, for that matter, is it Christian, or reflective of any God I recognize.Clearly her "god" is more akin to the god of John Shelby Spong and V. Gene Robinson, both of whom support pro-choice positions.

The Episcopal Church, as a collective body, has also taken a decidedly pro-abortion stand, refusing to allow any opposition, at the personal or diocesan level, against its collective will. Recently, the Bishop of Central Florida, The Rt. Rev. John W. Howe got a not so polite letter from a member of the national Executive Council urging the diocesan council of Central Florida to nullify a resolution disassociating from the abortion rights organization known as the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC).

The Central Florida board had written a letter opposing the church's official pro-abortion stand, which offended the national church's political sensitivities on the subject. John Vanderstar, of Washington, D.C., got into a huff and said that while he understood that Episcopalians hold varying political positions on the morality, legality and necessity of abortion, and that "this is a sensitive subject for many people, the [Central Florida] board's harsh language with regard to RCRC is neither fair nor accurate. Moreover, the action of the council was squarely supported by positions adopted by General Convention that date back some 40 years."

Bishop Howe wrote back to Vanderstar, saying he fully supported his diocese's resolution to disassociate from the RCRC. "I am, frankly, deeply embarrassed that the Executive Council adopted this affiliation in the first place," said Howe. Howe is a past president and chairman of the board of the organization now known as Anglicans for Life.

Georgette Forney, President of Anglicans for Life and Co-founder of Silent No More Awareness Campaign, a global ministry affirming the sanctity of life, said she was "shocked" when she learned that Rev. Ragsdale actually said 'Abortion is a blessing.' "Based on my personal experience as well as having heard and read thousands of testimonies of women from the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, who had abortions, blessing is never a word used to describe either the procedure or the aftereffects. Regret, nightmare, painful, and numbing are more applicable words to be associated with abortion. Frankly, Ms. Ragsdale's comment reveals a deep level of cold-heartedness."

"Ms. Ragsdale's enthusiasm for abortion is completely out of line from a pastoral and biblical perspective and makes me question whether there will be a litmus test for students seeking to enter EDS. Support the killing of unborn babies if you want to attend our seminary may become the new admissions slogan. Even most liberal politicians have adopted a more middle of the road approach to abortion by focusing on reducing the number of abortions performed each year (approximately 1.2 in 2007 in the US)." www.AnglicansforLife.org

The best-known Christian martyr of the Nazi era was Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Before he was hanged, he wrote in his prison cell: "The great masquerade of evil has played havoc with all our ethical concepts. For evil to disguise as light, charity, historical necessity or social justice is quite bewildering to anyone brought up on our traditional ethics, while for the Christian who bases his life on the Bible it merely confirms the fundamental wickedness of evil."

---

Virtue Online, edited by David W. Virtue, is the Voice for global orthodox Anglicanism.



Comments


More U.S.

A journey to the land of the free: Part One -- Beaten and scared young children flee violence and turn to the United States for hope Watch

Image of Many young immigrants have no more fight in them when they decide to cross the border, they're only trying to survive.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Blistered feet and filthy, blood-stained skin is the forlorn image of immigrants preparing to cross the border. With hopeful hearts and anxious minds, immigrants, of all ages, assemble to make the leap into their promise land. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Most ... continue reading


Pope Francis, the real architect behind the U.S.-Cuban thaw Watch

Image of With personal appeals, letters, and hosted meetings, the Vatican and Pope Francis can accurately be called the masterminds behind the recent thaw between the U.S. and Cuba.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The thaw in relations between the U.S. and Cuba took the world by surprise, but perhaps one man was not as shocked as the rest. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A senior official with the White House reported that Pope Francis made personal appeals to both President ... continue reading


Looking forward to your tax refund this year? Don't hold your breath. The IRS suffers after extreme budget cuts. Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Heavily stricken with budget cuts and new tax-related laws, the IRS considers implementing its own temporary shutdown. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Congress has recently cut the IRS budget by $346 million. The IRS' budget has been cut a total of $1 billion since ... continue reading


OBAMACARE DOES NOT WORK! Vermont gives up free healthcare plan as too expensive Watch

Image of Vermont's governor announced that a planned universal healthcare program for the state has been cancelled because the massive tax hikes would devastate the state's economy.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Peter Shumlin, the governor of Vermont, announced that he was canceling his longtime dream to create a single-payer health care system for his state. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The announcement came on December 17, citing problems with paying for the Green ... continue reading


The disgusting new fact of American life: More than 46 million Americans on food stamps for 37 straight month Watch

Image of Obama has been in office for about 70 months, and 37 of those months have seen the most amount of Americans on food stamps, ever!

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It is self-evident that President Obama continues to undermine the abilities of the lower class, enforcing government-reliance on those who can least afford it. The number of Americans on food stamps under Obama has continued along its record breaking path, as, ... continue reading


Faith in the United States' race relations hits a strikingly low point after no indictment verdicts Watch

Image of 57 percent of American's say race relations in the United States are bad, according to the latest NBC News/ Wall Street Journal poll.

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Those are the words of Martin Luther King, Jr, a man who fought long and hard for a better today. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A land where discrimination no longer prevails is a reality that seems no ... continue reading


The Pope, the Pets, the Paparazzi and the Propaganda Media

Image of Pope Francis pets a dog

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The passing on of this complete fabrication, as well as the embellishment which accompanied it, were not simply a matter of the secular press failing to comprehend this Pope. In fact, religious news sources, both Catholic and Protestant, jumped in. This all ... continue reading


Why is he so upset? Because of the secret Republican time bomb in the government funding bill Watch

Image of The federal government has funding through the 2015 fiscal year, but Republicans will have many opportunities to fight the president's programs in that time.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Senate has approved a $1.1 trillion spending bill, aimed to fund nearly the whole of the federal government through the 2015 fiscal year, ending weeks of drama in Congress and relieving doubts that the government might be shut down again while Democrats and ... continue reading


You know about the 'Bishop of Bling' but do American clergy have the same problem too? Watch

Image of The Bishop of Bling was sacked after he spent $43 million renovating his home.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has called for "a Church which is poor and for the poor." However, not every member of the clergy may have read the memo. A number of high-ranking Church officials in the United States live in lavish homes, sometimes bordering on the scandalous. LOS ... continue reading


Water leak leads to discovery of 1795 time capsule - left by Paul Revere! Watch

Image of A worker holds the time capsule left by the revolutionaries.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Paul Revere, the fearless revolutionary who mounted his horse to declare that "The British are coming! The British are coming!" has left an enduring national legacy - in both deed and actions. Excitement is mounting with the discovery of a time capsule left by Revere ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Judges 13:2-7, 24-25
2 There was a man of Zorah of the tribe of Dan, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 71:3-4, 5-6, 16-17
3 Be a sheltering rock for me, always accessible; you ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:5-25
5 In the days of King Herod of Judaea there lived a ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for December 19th, 2014 Image

St. Nemesius
December 19: Martyr of Egypt. He was burned alive in Alexandria, Egypt, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter