Thinking Anglicans

InclusiveChurch press release

Press Release
February 20, 2007

Meeting of Primates in Tanzania

We acknowledge the huge complexity of the issues which the Primates of the Communion brought to Tanzania and the fears and expectations which surrounded the meeting.

In that context we congratulate the Archbishop of Canterbury and his fellow Primates on their achievement of a united communiqué. We are acutely aware that compromises have been made by all sides. This is a sign of the great generosity of those present at the meeting.

There is a cost to discipleship and sometimes it is high. The cost demanded of our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters is immense, and has been for generations. The continuing failure of the Communion to address the pastoral needs and receive the ministerial gifts and insights of the whole community is part of that cost.

The heart of the Gospel for us is not about sexuality. The continuing arguments are damaging the Church’s mission and undermining the Gospel. Anglicanism has in its DNA the ability to embrace diversity. For example we recognise diversity over the nature of the Sacraments, in worship, and in the interpretation of scripture.

Why then are parts of the church so obsessed by the single issue of homosexuality? It is not a defining issue nor can it be the benchmark of orthodoxy.

We are pleased that the ‘listening process’ called for by the Windsor Report is receiving serious attention from the Primates, as is the consideration of a common hermeneutical method. But the listening process must not be a sop to lesbian and gay people and their supporters. It cannot be undertaken without those involved being open to the possibility of change. So far there is little evidence of that openness.

As the debate becomes more disconnected from the reality of everyday life of those we serve, it is increasingly clear that TEC is becoming a scapegoat. For example, the demand for TEC to forswear same sex blessings ignores the reality that across the Church of England such blessings are happening right across the country as parish priests respond to the pastoral needs of their community.

We acknowledge the pain experienced on all sides and we would not wish to see those who disagree with us being driven from the church. If that happened all of us would be the poorer. Therefore we commit ourselves as members of an inclusive church to continue the process of dialogue and relationship to which the Primates have called us.

Overshadowed by the rest of the report, the Primates recommitted themselves to the Millennium Development Goals. It is clear to us that in a world riven by injustice and poverty we should be uniting in raising our voices to ensure that those goals are met so that the gospel can be proclaimed afresh for a new generation.

For further information and to sign up as a supporter of InclusiveChurch’s aims, go to http://www.inclusivechurch.net

Author: Giles Goddard (Chair) on behalf of the InclusiveChurch Executive
office@inclusivechurch.net
07762 373 674

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Göran Koch-SwahneSteve Watson.drdanfeeDaveCheryl Clough Recent comment authors
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matthew hunt
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matthew hunt

What gospel is to be ‘proclaimed afresh for a new generation’.

The Anglican communion does not at present offer a gospel that I recognise as something that I would encourage anyone I truly cared about to subscribe to.

It’s Good News for institutional interdependence with a bias to puritanism.

Not Good News for people.

NP
Guest
NP

…so, be part of the launch of “TEC Global”

Erasmus
Guest
Erasmus

The Archbishop of Canterbury made some interesting comments at the final press conference in Tanzania, including his answer to a question concerning homosexuality: is it a gift from God or is it a sin? “The teaching of the Anglican Church remains that homosexual activity is not compatible with scripture. The homosexual condition, the homosexual desire, we don’t call conditions sinful in that sense.”
http://www.archbishopofcanterbury.org/releases/070220.htm

John-Francis
Guest

Just some thoughts. Of course, those who met did so in the name of the Church – or at least the Anglican Communion. Naturally many have been hurt by the nature of their declarations. People already suffering (maybe not in the West, but crtainly in most parts of Africa) are, once again, the target. “You are not wanted” may not have been the text, but it is certainly the sub-plot. So, once more, the church affirms it has no place for same-sex couples within its ranks. Nor does it want to officially recognise what so many others do – the… Read more »

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

I agree with Matthew. That’s why a united Anglican Communion is not a place I wish to be

John Henry
Guest
John Henry

Writes Giles Goddard, Exec. Director of Inclusive Church: “As the debate becomes more disconnected from the reality of everyday life of those we serve, it is increasingly clear that TEC is becoming a scapegoat. For example, the demand for TEC to forswear same sex blessings ignores the reality that across the Church of England such blessings are happening right across the country as parish priests respond to the pastoral needs of their community.” ECUSA’s HoB would be foolish to sign on to the Primates’ Communique, the Episcopal Church having become the “scapegoat” of the primatial circus, the new CURIA of… Read more »

Steven
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Steven

The whirl of angry, disappointed comments here and elsewhere leads me to wonder: do liberals actually believe in the listening process they continually advocate? I don’t mean the “success” defined listening process many seem to bark about–i.e., if you don’t agree with our position you weren’t listening. I mean the simple idea that sincerely listening to the experiences of lbgt folks will lead to change throughout the communion. If so, why not buck up and get on with things? From one standpoint, all that is really happening here is a rejection of a process of piecemeal change in favor of… Read more »

John Henry
Guest
John Henry

From another Blog: “Many African nations where the Anglican Church is active, in fact, legally prohibit homosexual activity, and accompany conviction of such crimes with a range of sanctions that are often quite severe by Western standards. It seems not only odd, but scandalously irresponsible, that these political and humanitarian realities have not been confronted openly in the course of the present debates, despite pleas from many that this happen.” How can ++Rowan Cantuar, in good conscience, claim the right to condemn TEC for having departed from Christian morality, when he, as chair of the Primates’ Meeting, is silent in… Read more »

Shawn+
Guest
Shawn+

And they STILL don’t get it–the House of Bishops of TEC is not the only governing body of the province. There is also a House of Deputies, and their combined voice has been heard, may change or may not, and will be heard again. In the meantime, ultimatums from foreign princes will not go over well with the Federalists on this side of the Atlantic.

Eddo
Guest
Eddo

Thank you John-Francis for those lovely and assuring words. If the need were to arise are you available for alternative primatial oversight? Although, there are so many to choose from here. (Currently safe in the Diocese of Maryland, but one never knows…)[Hope this isn’t too lite for this heady blog.]

Neil Barber
Guest
Neil Barber

“Why then are parts of the church so obsessed by the single issue of homosexuality?”

And as an organisation defined solely with reference to that single issue, we at ‘Inclusive Church’ are going to lead by example, drop our obsession with homosexuality and disband so that ‘Integrity’ and ‘Changing Attitude’ will follow suit.

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

But, Steven, I think the communion should disband – or, at least an alternative be available to it for those of us who simply don’t believe in conservative Christianity.

Its up to TEC now. Do they have the guts to say – enough is enough, and we are going our own way.There are plenty of us waiting for them to do so.

I am glad that I am no longer an Anglican. Whether I ever become one again depends on whether there is a version of Anglicanism worth being affiliated to.

Dave
Guest
Dave

John Henry wrote: “Will the Nigerian action lead to another Holocaust against gays? If so, ++Rowan Cantuar will be complicit due to his failure to reprimand the hate-monger of Abuja at the Primates’ Meeting.”

Dear John Henry, There is a huge distance between moral disapproval of something, and rounding up and executing people who’s beliefs and behaviours you disapprove of; I hope… or is that the way you would like to treat people who you disapprove of ? – In which case I better watch out!?

Dave
Guest
Dave

Then ABofC said “The homosexual condition, the homosexual desire, we don’t call conditions sinful in that sense.” I think the key words are “conditions” and “in that sense”. I don’t think that many conservative TAs would see it as sinful to *experience having* any sexual (or other) desire, tendency or orientation. But that doesn’t mean that the desire, tendency or orientation isn’t sinful! I’d like to remind people that everyone agrees that many sexual desires *are* sinful (eg exploitative, unequal, abusive, unfaithful etc). All the recent liberal campaigning is just about “de-sinning” one small subgroup of sexualities (ie consentual faithful… Read more »

Leonardo Ricardo
Guest
Leonardo Ricardo

“Why then are parts of the church so obsessed by the single issue of homosexuality?”

Because LGBT people are murdered because of loveless and exclusionary preaching…because this could be the biggest “missionary” challenge ever…because, bigots can not be allowed to continue to pray on innocents.

Obsessed or repressed?

Laurence Roberts
Guest
Laurence Roberts

The PB has gone the way of most liberal anglican leaders, including Williams — but this must be in record time!… I am appalled. She seemed so promising as well. Seems like she was just another churchman after all…..

Curtis
Guest
Curtis

Anglicanism is a joke. Maybe some day I’ll darken the door of an Anglican communion church again. But not any time soon. See ya.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

No Steven, you haven’t been listening, you haven’t even been “listening”.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“huge complexity”, “congratulate”, “achievement”, “united communiqué”

This needs to be sent back and rewritten.

Fr Joseph O'Leary
Guest

“I don’t think that many conservative TAs would see it as sinful to *experience having* any sexual (or other) desire, tendency or orientation. But that doesn’t mean that the desire, tendency or orientation isn’t sinful!” The heterosexual and homosexual desire, tendency or orientation are both equally given, equally natural (as a glance at the animal kingdom also confirms); to say that the latter is sinful savours of the manichean heresy. Indeed, it is only a small step from saying homosexual affectivity is sinful to saying that sexual feeling as such is a taint. The panic, hysteria and fixatedness of the… Read more »

Cheryl Clough
Guest

Fr Joseph Thank you for saying what I wanted to say. The next logical step is to say that all sexual feelings are sinful. When we look at the edicts that the only reverential reason for marriage is the raising of children, then it sure looks that way. As a recent contemplation, I sometimes wonder if what happened to Adam and Eve in the garden was puberty. You know, boy and girl discover they have “little bits” and that if they play with each other’s “little bits”, they feel rather nice. Then God knows this has happened and comes along… Read more »

Dave
Guest
Dave

Joseph O’Leary wrote: “The heterosexual and homosexual desire, tendency or orientation are both equally given, equally natural (as a glance at the animal kingdom also confirms); to say that the latter is sinful savours of the manichean heresy. Indeed, it is only a small step from saying homosexual affectivity is sinful to saying that sexual feeling as such is a taint.” Dear Joseph, It could also be argued that it is only a small step from saying that homosexual affectivity is not sinful to saying that NO sexual affectivity is sinful – even those that are abusive, unfaithful etc! It… Read more »

Steven
Guest
Steven

Merseymike:

I don’t necessarily disagree, I am merely surprised that there are no liberal voices looking for a deeper and more providential meaning and opportunity in all of this.

Steven

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“John Henry wrote: “Will the Nigerian action lead to another Holocaust against gays? If so, ++Rowan Cantuar will be complicit due to his failure to reprimand the hate-monger of Abuja at the Primates’ Meeting.”

Dave objected to this. Now I would very much like to hear Dave specify his objection(s) to this statement (so that I could listen and understand his view).

Cheryl Clough
Guest

“…I am merely surprised that there are no liberal voices looking for a deeper and more providential meaning and opportunity in all of this.” We will give it a go. But will we become complacent and stop forming our post-abuse support networks? No. Not any more. We’ve watched what “trusting and waiting” can do. It has been over 2000 years and there is still no repentance on the mistreatment and slandering of women. People are as vehement today as they were before Jesus’ incarnation that women are filthy and unworthy and unreliable. People are as vicious now as they were… Read more »

Dave
Guest
Dave

Dear Göran, sorry, I used a lot of English idiom in that post.

I wanted to question the assertion in the post by John Henry (20 February 2007 at 9:10pm) that expressing moral disapproval is the first step towards mass murder.

I also wanted to know whether this meant that John Henry’s disapproval of MY beliefs etc would mean that he wants to murder me ?!

drdanfee
Guest
drdanfee

Ah Dave, are you always as disingenuous as you are when you post here on TA? Fact is, the legacy negatives are a whole huge world away from simply being morally disapproving. Homosexuality, and same sex acts have historically been viewed more deeply and more negatively, than, say telling what folk lore calls a white lie. (I tell the axe murderer that I do not know where my mother is, because even though I do know where my mother is, I also know the axe murderer is looking to chop her good.) There are wells of disgust and creepiness which… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“John Henry wrote: “Will the Nigerian action lead to another Holocaust against gays? If so, ++Rowan Cantuar will be complicit due to his failure to reprimand the hate-monger of Abuja at the Primates’ Meeting.” Dave objected to this. “Dear John Henry, There is a huge distance between moral disapproval of something, and rounding up and executing people who’s beliefs and behaviours you disapprove of; I hope… or is that the way you would like to treat people who you disapprove of ? – In which case I better watch out!?” I asked Dave for a clarification, he explained: “I wanted… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

John Henry’s observation is correct: “If so, ++Rowan Cantuar will be complicit due to his failure to reprimand the hate-monger of Abuja…” If not before, it is clear from what happened at The White Sands (the parallel meeting at The Beachcomber, the refusal to partake of the Body of Christ, the threats to leave the Communion and the meeting, the desperate last minute tantrum to kill the drafts of the intended and unanimous Communiqué and proposals), that the development in Nigeria towards “rounding up and executing people . you disapprove of “ and the pending legislation to that effect –… Read more »

Steve Watson.
Guest
Steve Watson.

Goran, old chap, stop worrying about the Anglican Communion – your own Lutheran church needs your help, not the Anglican Communion. Bring the gospel to the Swedish people, most of whom never darken the door of your state church. Does this trouble you? Or doesn’t it matter?

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Don’t you thou me, Watson!