Everyone and their sister is announcing it, but it's one of those gotta-know-about-it things, so I am happy to join the crowds to let you know that the Episcopal Café is up and running. It replaces Jim Naughton's "Daily Episcopalian" blog (Jim is Canon for Communications in the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, D.C.) and offers expanded resources.
Says the site:
Welcome to the Episcopal Café, a ministry of the Diocese of Washington in partnership with The Episcopal Church in the Visual Arts.
The Café is a collaborative effort by more than two dozen writers and editors, and an ever-growing list of visual artists. Together, we aspire to create a visually appealing, intellectually stimulating, spiritually enriching and at least occasionally amusing site where Episcopalians and those interested in our church can read, watch, listen and reflect upon contemporary life in a context informed by faith and animated by the spirit of charity.
Our aim is frankly, but we hope gently, evangelical. To the extent that we can speak intelligently, passionately, persuasively and truthfully—and to the degree that we manifest wisdom, humility and genuine concern for those we disagree with—we will succeed in drawing Episcopalians more deeply into their faith, and in persuading those without a spiritual home to explore our Church.
Read more here.
Note: If the Café is "at least occasionally amusing," this means you all still need to go visit MadPriest, where "amusing" is not an occasional thing, and "uproarious" is more like it. OCICBW (of course, I could be wrong...), but I don't think so.
And you want to stay in touch with the Episcopal Church outside the U.S., as in Our Fabulous Missionaries, like Padre Mickey and the Lovely Mona and their Panamanian companions.
I am changing the blogroll to the right to reflect the change from "Daily Episcopalian" to "Episcopal Café." The Café looks like a fine resource, with a good group of contributors, including Richard Helmer and Deirdre Good, whom I have quoted here, and many others.
I am hoping there will be ecumenical perspectives, sensitivities, and visions there. I will muse --or rant-- in a separate and later post about Episcopal narrow-mindedness in this area. Not that other communions are much better, but one expects more of a church that is both Catholic (catholic) and Reformed (reformed). (Note: we have a perfectly fine ecumenical officer nationally, so I'm not talking about him, but about general attitudes and knowledge among church members, including various leaders at local and other levels; but let me not get started here.)
I also wonder, because the Episcopal blog scene is so active and influential, whether those who are NOT involved in it will become somehow marginalized from public conversation. As someone who lives on bridges and builds bridges, I will continue to reflect on this -- and to keep it in mind. (Yes, I feel an essay coming on about this very topic, but not quite yet. I'm going to keep observing and let it cook.)