Father Douglas Anderson's weekly KneeMail to parishioners and friends of Saint James Church, Texarkana
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Kneemail from Saint James Church

June 13, AD 2018

In this KneeMail, I continue to address this summer’s General Convention (GC) of the Episcopal Church, which will meet in Austin for the first two weeks of July.  GC is bicameral, comprised of a House of Bishops (active bishops and retired) and a House of Deputies (clergy and lay delegates elected by each diocese).   These are analogous to the House of Representatives and Senate in Congress.  And like Congress, any legislation must be passed by both Houses.
Because GC is so geographically near to us, and the summer is often slow when it comes to news, we should expect disproportionate coverage of GC in the secular press, especially when it comes issues of sexuality, which although a very small part of the GC’s business, will take up the most ink and air time.
We should also expect the media to be less-than-accurate in its reporting.  Secular reportage of religion is often so, though not deliberately.  Even twenty years ago, many press agencies and papers had dedicated religion reporters, who could write intelligently on this topic.  But because of budget cuts in newsrooms, the Religion Newswriters Association reports that are now much fewer such journalists, and accuracy and precision has suffered as a result.
One often sees headlines such as “Pope changes teaching on α” or “Baptists decide ß” when in fact the Pope was only musing aloud about α (something he would be better not doing!) or a small group of Baptist preachers on the lunatic fringe proposed ß at some meeting.
Permit me another analogy.  Delegates and even some bishops at GC are not unlike a drug company which proposes a new drug to treat a particular disease.  The media may run with this with a breathless headline such as “New drug may cure twengies,” when in fact it may equally not cure twengies, and thus not be approved by the FDA.  Sometimes delegates or bishops (=the drug company) will propose that the Episcopal Church do ß, even though the resolution might not be approved by the GC (=FDA), failing in either the House of Bishops or the House of Deputies, or the proposition might be substantially amended, watered down, referred to committee or, as often the case, passed with the caveat that given legislation may only take effect in a diocese if the bishop gives consent.  And yet the take-away will be “General Convention does ß,” when the reality is much more nuanced.
To complicate things further, some resolutions are in fact a “Memorial” which express the “mind of the Convention,” and call for no particular action, while other resolutions rise to the level of legislation, and yet have no enforcement mechanism.  It’s complex for those of us who even pretend to understand the “inside baseball” of the Episcopal Church.  Like I said last week, my experience of the Church on the ground—faithful people giving, praying, working for the extension of the Kingdom—is very far removed from the dealings of CG.

So, we need to be discerning about the way we read reports about GC in the media. I will make sure that at the conclusion of GC, you have an accurate summary of what the Convention actually accomplished and what it means in practical terms—if anything.
If you are interested in the internal machinations of GC, I refer you to this article:
Yours with every blessing,

Rev. Douglas Anderson, Rector

Wednesday Nights are in recess until the Fall.

Low Mass at 8am.
Sung Mass at 10am
Nursery provided from 10 am onwards.

Last Chance Mass in the chapel at 5:30pm.
Did you know that you can now securely give to
Saint James' Church online? 

Visit for details!
SUMMER BOOK GROUP for women.  Are you interested in reading and discussing a book over the summer months?  You can pitch your ideas to or text 903.691.9641.  This is the final time of asking.
WE ARE CLEANING OUT THE CUPBOARDS!  There are about a million dishes/plates that people have brought to receptions etc. laid out in the coffee area.  Please stop by and pick up any of your orphans.   Unclaimed dishes will be given away the week of July 24th.
ALL SAINTS’ ATLANTA.  In 2016 the bishop called on St. James' to provide ministerial support to All Saints' Church in Atlanta, TX. Through the monthly ministry of Fr. David and a couple lay persons, a good relationship has been established, and good fruit is blooming. We are at a point of taking a next step to help strengthen ties with the All Saints community. This is a call to anyone interested in giving their time and/or talents to that end. Please speak with the clergy if you have interest and feel called to provide outreach and support.     

PASTORAL LETTER from the Bishop about this summer’s General Convention of the Episcopal Church, is here:

 Pat Poulos (10), Richard Conkey, Danielle Davis (13), Alan Trimble, Ann Drummond (15), Candy Smith (16).

Mark & Cathy Van Herpen (10), Josh & Caty Burks (12).

Alan & Amanda Pearce

Rest Eternal grant unto them, O Lord; and let light perpetual shine upon them.

Anniversaries of death falling this week:
George Cleveland, 2001; William Gleboff, 2004; James Burroughs, 2004; Jerry Davis, 2013.

Christian Education Classes are in recess until the start of school.


THE FLOWER DONOR CHART is in the Narthex (porch) to sign-up to give flowers in memory or in thanksgiving of a loved one, or you may call or e-mail Martha Bean at 903-547-6911 – e-mail .  The cost is still just $35 per donor, per Sunday.  What a great way to honor or remember those who are important in our lives!   You can also now arrange and securely pay for your flower donations online by clicking HERE.

THE ROSARY GROUP meets on Tuesdays at 10am to pray the “Bible on a String.” Come join us.  For more information, contact Lova at

THE DAUGHTERS OF THE KING is an Order for Episcopal women founded in 1885.  We are a prayer and service group who meets once a month.  We regularly take part in worship, study, and aid our Clergy as asked.  If you are interested in more about us, please call or e-mail Lova Wile (903-832-2533 ), Tammy Cowdery (903-277-2148 ), or Gail Crisp (903-838-0942 )
Copyright © 2018 Saint James' Church, All rights reserved.

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