A statement from the Primate on the threatened Koran burning
Dear friends in faith,
I join bishops of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada and other church leaders in calling on Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Fl, to maintain a commitment to refrain from a public burning of the Koran on Sept 11th, the 9th anniversary of terrorist attacks on the United States of America. That day, it seems to me, should be marked by gatherings for prayer, and expressions of mutual respect for our various faith traditions and the texts we all regard as sacred. This appeal is grounded in our love for God and neighbour, and our deep desire for peace among all people.
In abiding hope, I am
Sincerely in Christ
Archbishop and Primate
In addition to what seeems to me to be overly complicated grammar,
...to maintain a commitment to refrain from a public burning...I can see why some might want to gather for prayer on this particular day. But frankly, I have no desire to set aside a day to express my mutual respect for various faith traditions, even though I in fact may respect other people of faith, as opposed to those of no faith. And I respect their right to hold whatever faith they hold, even if I think them wrong. But I also feel no great need to express my respect for the texts they hold sacred, even as I respect their right to hold them sacred.
And what did I think of the pastor's plan to burn Korans? Was I offended? No. And not being a politician I felt no need to feign outrage and take righteous offence. But I think it was just a completely dumb idea.
I'm glad he changed his mind.