Grace and peace to you in Jesus Christ,
Reports from the recently concluded Primates’ Meeting held at Canterbury Cathedral are stirring emotions across the Anglican Communion and within our own Episcopal Church. I commend to your prayerful attention the full text of the Primates’ Communique as well as the text and video from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and the letter from President Gay Jennings of the House of Deputies. The honest, prophetic. encouraging and hope-filled words of our church’s top leaders fill me with joy during this time of profound disappointment.
While some news outlets have reported that the Episcopal Church has been expelled or suspended from the Anglican Communion, this simply is not true. The Episcopal Church will be asked and in some cases required to refrain from certain kinds of participation in communion-wide decisions regarding doctrine and polity but the specifics will take time to sort out. Let us be patient and stay connected to one another and to our friends and ministry partners throughout our global communion.
The Episcopal Church has been and will continue to be faithful to its commitment to strive for justice and peace and to respect the dignity of every human being. As your bishop and as a baptized child of God, this means that my commitment is unwavering to our church’s discernment that we are called to an expansive understanding of traditional marriage that includes both same-gender and different-gender couples. Eastern Michigan will remain a safe and loving place for all God’s children.
The Primates have collectively but not unanimously determined that the more expansive understanding of marriage faithfully discerned by the Episcopal Church, violates beliefs in a number of other Provinces of the Communion. I humbly accept this determination and will abide by the recommended consequences as they are laid out in the days ahead. However. I also intend to participate in efforts to enhance mutual understanding across theological differences and to deepen relationships within our beloved Communion. Furthermore, I invite you to join me in this holy work.
In the name of the One who is Love, our Savior Jesus Christ, I ask your prayers for all who strive for justice and peace.
The Right Reverend Todd Ousley
II Bishop of Eastern Michigan