It’s now 18 days since we were told (on 11 May) that the other participants in the Panel of Reference would be named “next week”.
Meanwhile these developments in the Connecticut case:
A recent statement by the Bishop of Connecticut (issued through his spokesperson, Karen Hamilton), which has been masquerading as a piece of journalism, includes distortions of fact and blatant misrepresentations; it is proof positive of the need for immediate intervention here in Connecticut. There are two major issues that must be addressed: Bishop Smith’s abandonment of orthodox Anglican faith and order and his continued harassment of faithful clergy and congregations in Connecticut.
Unfortunately, the article fails to substantiate this criticism by listing any specific “distortions” or “misrepresentations” in the diocesan article, but after addressing the other two issues mentioned, it concludes:
Everyone in the Episcopal Church concerned with the preservation of the Anglican Communion and the imperatives of simple Christian charity, should call on the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church and the Archbishop of Canterbury to employ the Panel of Reference to intervene immediately, so that adequate episcopal oversight can become a reality for faithful Episcopalians of Connecticut. No further adversarial action, or threats of such action, should be countenanced.
There has been one attempt to suggest a way forward in this dispute, in earlier (April) blog posts by Leander Harding, which I had missed at the time: Observations On CT Clergy Meeting Today and Thoughts On The CT Six. These suggestions do not seem to have had any effect on the dispute.
Also, last week, David Anderson issued An Open Letter to the Anglican Communion from the AAC President
While this does not mention Connecticut, it is an extended criticism of the remarks already reported from Archbishop Peter Carnley about the Panel.
If the Panel of Reference is a serious effort by the Primates and the Archbishop of Canterbury’s office to address the needs of those who otherwise would seek succor from global Anglican Provinces, and if there is serious intent to implement this Panel so that it fills this need, major change including the choice of the chairman will be necessary for this to be acceptable and useful. If it is designed to be unacceptable or useless, the bother of assembling the Panel can be dispensed with.
One might have thought that this subject should be placed firmly on the agenda of the forthcoming Anglican Consultative Council meeting in Nottingham, where other provinces could express their views face-to-face to ECUSA representatives. However, since the ECUSA delegation was asked by the Primates meeting (and has agreed) not to participate in that meeting, that’s now not possible. What a pity.