The inclusion of this chant is unconscionable. The orthodox who are there should immediately vacate.Among more reflective comments on this disturbing story, Bishop Robert Duncan said the inclusion of the chant was “very, very troubling” since it was an “invocation of something other than the God we know... to have a Buddhist chant at an Anglican sermon does not reflect the God we believe in.”
I strongly endorse Cardinal Dias’ rejection of syncretism in an Indian context. My Sinhala is not what it could be. The gospel says that if you have an issue with a brother you owe it to yourself and to your God talk it through calmly and directly with them first. Today I was able to discuss this chant with Bishop de Chickera. Much Sri Lankan culture is essentially of Buddhist origin, he explained. What did the words mean? I asked. Four verses:
I take refuge in God the FatherI am surprised that the Bishop of Pittsburgh finds this a deeply troubling invocation of a God he does not know. I am sorry if it does not reflect the God he believes in. I rejoice to know, and better still, to be known through and through by this God, and to believe in him. Over fifty years he has been my creator, saviour, and sanctifier, and I know no other.
I take refuge in God the Son
I take refuge in God the Holy Spirit
I take refuge in the One Triune God.
When we rush to judgment of others we do not know, like or understand, especially on the internet, especially on the basis of rumour, it is easy to make complete fools of ourselves.