Monday, April 07, 2008

"My church went to the heretics, and all I got was a lousy T-shirt."

By now, anyone who reads Episcopal news, and especially the blogs (see: 1, 2, and 3) knows that the judge in the Virginia church property disputes handed down a decision that was a setback for TEC and a first round victory for the departing Anglican District of Virginia (ADV) in what, alas, promises to be a protracted legal battle.

In his written opinion, which centered on whether the difference between the two sides constitutes a "division" over a matter of religious opinion (as required by the Virginia statute at issue in the case), Judge Randy Bellows stated that "it blinks at reality to characterize the ongoing division within the Diocese, ECUSA, and the Anglican Communion as anything but a division of the first magnitude."

This language echoed a phrase contained in the Episcopal Church's brief in the case, which had asserted that the ADV's position on the Virginia statute "blinks at reality." Both uses of the phrase were intended as euphemisms for the much harsher accusation of lying.

Then the fun began:

"AnnieCOA," commenting on Stand Firm, wrote:
"TEC: Blinking at Reality"
Somebody better be making the T-Shirts! Profits could go to the ADV Defense Fund.

A mere sixteen minutes later, blogger Billy Ockham replied
AnnieCOA, Check ‘em out! Any profits will go to the ADV fund.

The link Billy Ockham had provided went to this Cafe Press page where you can buy T-shirts, boxer shorts, mugs, magnets, and stickers, all bearing the line:

"The Episcopal Church: Blinking at reality since 1976."

Don't you just love cyberspace sometimes?

Billy Ockham, writing on his own blog, explained:
Why 1976 you ask? Well, that's the year the Right Reverend John Shelby Spong was ordained bishop. It marks the beginning of an era.
Indeed it does!

But as Billy, who comments on Stand Firm under the name "mousestalker" remarked:

"My church went to the heretics and all I got was a lousy t-shirt!"

Well, Billy, thanks for the laugh and for designing this very timely merchandise.

Personally, I am going to buy a pair of those boxer shorts. Then, when someone asks me what I think of The Episcopal Church's lawsuits, I am going to unbuckle my belt, drop my trousers, and show 'em!


Annie said...

Miles and miles of smiles!!!

Of course, we are absolutely delighted with Billy's response and support.

Thank you for your encouragement and for suggesting ways we can creatively spread the word :)

Church of the Apostles
Fairfax, VA

Kathryn said...

I Can't WAIT until the next time our paths cross. You KNOW what question will comprise the first words out of my mouth!

rector said...

Please do not forget that a certain Bishop had 200 mugs produced prior to GC06 that simply states:

The Episcopal Church
Inclusive as Hell

Blessings from down in East Texas Robert+ - Don+