Heresy is better than schism, the Episcopal bishop of Virginia said yesterday in a speech that gently chided church conservatives for imperiling the unity of the country’s largest diocese over the consecration of the denomination’s first homosexual bishop last November.
“If you must make a choice between heresy and schism, always choose heresy,” said the Rt. Rev. Peter J. Lee to 500 Episcopalians meeting for the annual diocesan council at the Hyatt Regency in Reston.
“For as a heretic, you are only guilty of a wrong opinion,” Bishop Lee said, quoting Presbyterian scholar James McCord. “As a schismatic, you have torn and divided the body of Christ. Choose heresy every time.”
After delegates applauded him, he added, “I hope we will avoid both heresy and schism.”
I guess unity is now a higher value than the pursuit of truth. Strange, I thought that Jesus mentioned that following him would cause divisions.
oh, BULLCORN! if “bishop” lee truly believed that “as a schismatic, you have torn and divided the body of Christ,” HE’D BE CATHOLIC. the hypocrisy makes me want to VOMIT.
Call the Catholic Bishop of Virginia, it sounds like the Episcopals are coming home. Wait . . . I’m assuming he’s actually read some history.
What an odd statement by a man in his position: he is a leader in a church that choose schism and heresy!
I see I’m not the only one who noticed the… irony… of the “bishop’s” remarks.
Note that, since Catholics understand heresy is not, in fact, “only … a wrong opinion,” schism is a form of heresy (since it implies a denial of the unique claims of the Church) (although canonically it’s treated differently). If Bishop Lee were right about what heresy is, he’d be right about preferring it to schism.
And yet, though Catholics see [formal] heresy as worse than schism — in other words, we value truth over unity — we seem to have a lot more heretics than schismatics. Possibly because heresy is easier than setting up your own priesthood.