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There is something in the autumn that is native to my blood,
Touch of manner, hint of mood,
And my heart is like a rhyme,
With the yellow and the purple and the crimson keeping time.

The scarlet of the maples can shake me like a cry,
Of bugles going by,
And my lonely spirit thrills,
To see the frosty asters like smoke upon the hills.

There is something in October sets the gypsy blood astir,
We must rise and follow her,
When from every hill of flame,
She calls and calls each vagabond by name.

Bliss Carman


Tennyson’s The Princess, Part IV, Autumn Leaves:

Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean.

Tears from the depth of some divine despair

Rise in the heart, and gather to the eyes,



In looking on the happy Autumn-fields,

And thinking on the days that are no more.


From Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh
Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh:


Pittsburgh Chooses Path to Separation

Johnstown, Pennsylvania – November 2, 2007 – Declaring “As a diocese 
we have come to a fork in the road,” Pittsburgh’s Bishop Robert 
Duncan set the tone for the 142nd annual convention of the Episcopal 
Diocese of Pittsburgh. The bishop continued, “This is not a place we 
would wish to stay, even if we could.” The convention majority agreed 
with the bishop, voting in favor of amendments to eliminate the 
diocese’s accession to the constitution and canons of TEC and 
allowing it to designate by canon the Anglican province to which it 
will belong. The resolution also eliminated the requirement that 
parishes have similar accession clauses in their bylaws or articles 
of incorporation. The vote, by secret ballot, favored passage by 118 
to 59 lay votes, with one abstention, and 109 to 24 clergy votes. On 
the way to the final vote, the convention defeated an attempt to 
substitute an amendment that would have restored the accession clause 
to its pre-2004 condition.

Quoting Martin Luther in a brief reply to her recent letter, Bishop 
Duncan defiantly rejected Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts 
Schori’s request that he urge the convention to reject the resolution 
he has hitherto strongly supported. Rather that heed the presiding 
bishop’s advice, Duncan denied a request from a deputy to declare the 
resolution out of order by virtue of its being beyond the power of 
the diocese to enact. The bishop’s actions and his continuing 
advocacy of “realignment” will likely make him subject to church 
disciplinary action.

Bishop Duncan continued to assert his unique theory of diocesan 
independence, reversing the generally accepted understanding of 
Episcopal Church polity. Once again, he asserted that those wishing 
to remain in The Episcopal Church would have to leave the diocese to 
do so, seemingly denying to that it is he and his supporters who want 
out of The Episcopal Church. The bishop then suggested that property 
currently held in common, including Trinity Cathedral and Calvary 
Camp, should, after a split, be administered for the benefit of all. 
It became clear, in other words, that he expects both to leave TEC 
and remain in control of its assets, which he would then generously 
offer to share with those he had dispossessed.

During both the convention and a set of morning workshops preceding 
the formal opening of the business meeting of the convention, 
proponents of the anti-accession resolution described an Episcopal 
Church that had strayed from Christian “orthodoxy,” citing, among 
other complaints, the failure of the church to discipline Bishops 
Pike and Spong. Episcopal Church supporters talked about the 
impropriety of the resolution, the fact that TEC has not changed its 
core beliefs, and the pain that necessarily will accompany any 
separation. The outcome, however, was never in doubt.

“The vote today was “tragic,” said Joan Gundersen, president of 
Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh and a deputy to the 
convention. The step taken today by the Diocese of Pittsburgh will 
only lead to pain for all the people of the diocese, to increased 
litigation, and to charges being filed against Bishop Duncan under 
the disciplinary canons of the church. That pain was often evident in 
the voices of those speaking on both sides of the measure. The next 
year will be one of constant turmoil as the diocesan leadership 
furthers its separation plans in anticipation of a final ratification 
of constitutional changes next year.

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Joan of Arc

I know this now. Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing yet they give their lives to that little or nothing. One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. And then it is gone. But to sacrifice what you are and live without belief, that's more terrible than dying.--

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November 2007



On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.

And when your eyes
freeze behind
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.

John O'Donohue, Echoes of Memory