Thinking Anglicans

Who is going to the Primates Meeting?

Updated again Tuesday morning

The previous roundup of news on this topic was here. Since then there was also this announcement.

This week’s Church Times reports that There could be sandwiches to spare in Dublin.

At the end of last year, it was announced that ten Primates from the Global South intended to boycott the meeting, in protest at the inclusion of the US Primate after rows over gay bishops and same-sex blessings (News, 26 November).

The Church Times understands that this number might have risen to 14 out of the possible 37 Primates eligible to attend. (There is one vacancy.) The general secretary of the Anglican Communion Office (ACO), Canon Kenneth Kearon, believes, however, that those who stay away, “in protest after developments in the Episcopal Church” in the United States, will number “less than ten”. There might be other absentees because of health or visa issues, he said.

He admitted, however, that numbers would be unknown until the meeting began on Tuesday. “Given that most Primates make their own travel arrangements, and that plans can change at the last minute, it is impossible for anyone to say for certain how many Primates will travel to Dublin for the meeting.”

The ten Primates in the original boycott are understood to be those of Jerusalem & the Middle East, the Indian Ocean, South-East Asia, the Southern Cone, Rwanda, West Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Uganda, and Kenya. A Global South spokesman suggested that another four were likely to stay away. One of these, the Primate of Sudan, has other matters demanding his attention in the wake of his country’s referendum…

The Anglican Communion News Service reports that Primates not attending Dublin meeting “have reiterated their commitment to the Communion”.

…The Primates who have turned down the invitation to this week’s Primates’ Meeting because of developments in The Episcopal Church are still committed to the Anglican Communion.

In an interview today with BBC Radio Ulster’s Sunday Sequence programme, Anglican Communion Secretary General Canon Kenneth Kearon told presenter William Crawley that at Communion meetings there are always a number of participants who cannot come for a variety of reasons including health or diary commitments.

Canon Kearon gave as an example of those who would likely leave their decision to attend until the last minute the Primates of Sudan and Australia whose countries are dealing with major issues including a referendum and flooding respectively.

He added that on this occasion some Primates had written to say they would not be attending the Dublin meeting because of the presence of the Primate of The Episcopal Church and recent developments in The Episcopal Church.

“About seven or possibly eight have written to me directly to say that’s the reason why they cannot come,” he said. “About two can’t come because of health reasons and there are a few we are not yet sure whether they are coming or not.

“Those Primates who said they’re not coming as part of an objection to the Episcopal Church and other developments have reiterated their commitment to the Communion and the Archbishop of Canterbury in their writing to me…”

There was a Mere Anglicanism conference this weekend in South Carolina, at which the Primate of Jerusalem and the Middle East has been speaking. He made some comments about the forthcoming meeting reported as follows:

…With the regard of the upcoming Primate’s meeting, (Dublin, Ireland Jan 25-30, 2011) we are not boycotting. Many have said that we are boycotting this meeting. We however are not attending.

Why? Because we did ask the Archbishop of Canterbury to follow up on the recommendations of the previous meeting (Dar es Salaam, 2006; no meeting was held in 2008 because of the Lambeth Conference). At that meeting we discussed, decided and recommended actions. This was never done. It is time for decisions after comprehensive discussion.

For this meeting, we received an invitation to sit in 2 separate rooms: the revisionists in one and the Global South in another. This is a joke. We were not given a chance to affect the process and have some ownership of the meeting. When we are given that opportunity, we will attend.

Update there is a full transcript of these remarks now available here.

The text of the article in Evangelicals Now by Chris Sugden is now available over here.

…The clear implication of Bishop Fearon’s case ( which is also Archbishop Rowan Williams’ case) is that even though Anglicans have been persecuted and driven from their homes, buildings and jobs in the USA and Canada, other Anglican leaders should meet yet again with those responsible for these outrages and thus legitimate the presence of those who completely contradict the teaching and practice of the Christian churches. Once decisions were made at the Early Church Councils Bishop Fearon has referred to, Arius and others were declared to be and treated as heretics. Similar clear decisions taken by the succession of meetings since 1998 have not been followed through…

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Bill DilworthRosemary HannahSimon SarmientoRandal OultonLaurence Roberts Recent comment authors
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Pat O'Neill
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Pat O'Neill

I cannot believe how disingenuous Canon Kearon seems to be…how can one be committed to the Communion if one will not sit with others of its members and discuss differences in a civil manner?

Lois Keen
Guest
Lois Keen

TEC is a thorn in the side of the hierarchy of the Church of England, Pat O’Neill. I can totally imagine Canon Kearon thinking, “Well if those bloody Yanks would just toe the line these primates wouldn’t be forced to not attend and of course they’re still committed to the Communion. It’s TEC that’s not committed even though their primate is attending.”

Sorry to disappoint you, Canon Kearon, by showing up.

JCF
Guest
JCF

“We were not given … ownership of the meeting.” [Ellipsis for intent ;-/] Thank you, Anis, for your clarity!

“This week’s Church Times reports that ‘There could be sandwiches to spare in Dublin.'”

I cannot help but think of those who *refused* their invitation to the Wedding Banquet. Why not seek out those on the highways & byways? {Pssst, e.g., LGBTs in Africa!}

Malcolm French+
Guest

Did Canon Kearon truncate what the boycotting primates said? Did they perhaps say: “We reiterate our support for the Communion and the Archbishop of Canterbury provided we get our way in the end”?

Father Ron Smith
Guest

Perhaps the remainders from the Banquet could really be given to the poor. There need is probably greater than that of most Primates.

With the GAFCON crowd absent, maybe the possibility of some agreement to live together in unity between the rest of us – including TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada. Then perhaps the joyous message of the Gospel may be proclaimed without prejudice to us Sinners who have been redeemed by the great love and mercy of Christ.

Father Ron Smith
Guest

Abp. Anis, when mentioning that he would not be at the Primates meeting, gave the assurance that no doubt the Holy Spirit would be speaking there. Of that, then we can all be certain – especially, I believe, in the absence of certain of the dissenting Primates. The Spirit will find room.

Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

Yes, well I rather like the idea that one can be fully behind the Anglican Communion project without attending the Primates Meeting. As to those who are always harping on about Rowan’s spinelessness – well its clear that Dr Williams has no intention of surrendering the agenda at Dublin to the Global South Primates and their advisors. The disaster at Dar es Salaam when he lost control of the meeting and then almost immediately had to repudiate (or at least ignore) its outcome has left both Lambeth and the ACO deeply scarred. Yet, looking at he two questions Primates were… Read more »

Pat O'Neill
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Pat O'Neill

“…Anglicans have been persecuted and driven from their homes, buildings and jobs in the USA and Canada…”

with pitchforks and flaming torches, I presume?

JPM
Guest
JPM

Will it really be a primates meeting without Martyn Minns scripting the talking points?

Selina
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Selina

so, the ABC cannot gather all the Primates of the AC….. he should resign…. he clearly has lost the confidence of too much of the AC and is unable to fulfil his role

Jim Naughton
Guest

“…Anglicans have been persecuted and driven from their homes, buildings and jobs in the USA and Canada…” I wonder if Canon Sugden would mind providing some names here. The only situations I am aware of in which something like this has happened involve individuals and congregations who have publicly renounced their membership in the Episcopal Church, and joined other churches that are antagonistic to the Episcopal Church. But that can’t be it, can it? After all, there is nothing outrageous in asking people to leave positions in, and vacate the property of a church of which they are no longer… Read more »

Lois Keen
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Lois Keen

Woo, Chris Sugden – you take my breath away. Heretics. Persecutors. Driving people from their homes. To paraphrase Martin Reynolds, demanding I and my fellow Episcopalians be cast into the outer darkness of heresy is still no less “all about the power”.

JPM
Guest
JPM

Is Canon Sugden going to address this issue at Synod?

peterpi - Peter Gross
Guest
peterpi - Peter Gross

“… With the regard of the upcoming Primate’s meeting, (Dublin, Ireland Jan 25-30, 2011) we are not boycotting. Many have said that we are boycotting this meeting. We however are not attending.” — Primate of Jerusalem Thanks for clearing that up. You’re not boycotting the meeting, you’re just simply not attending because of those pesky American Episcopalians. What the difference is, I haven’t the foggiest. I sure hope the Archbishop of Canterbury works with those who show up, instead of fussing and fretting and coming up with new ways to make the non-attendees feel better. When Lucy and Charlie Brown… Read more »

Laurence Roberts
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Laurence Roberts

‘so, the ABC cannot gather all the Primates of the AC….. he should resign…. he clearly has lost the confidence of too much of the AC and is unable to fulfil his role’ Posted by: Selina on Monday, 24 January 2011 With respect this is 21st century, self-indulgent clap-trap* ! The Churches are not businesses, the Archbishop of Canterbury is not a MD and his role is to be. The other archbishops and the rest of us may have, & need have, no ‘confidence’ in Most Revd Rowan Williams, as a person, but he simply is the Archbishop of Canterbury.… Read more »

Randal Oulton
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Randal Oulton

>> those who stay away, “in protest after developments in the Episcopal Church” in the United States, will number “less than ten”. “fewer than ten”, surely. >> “…Anglicans have been persecuted and driven from their homes, buildings and jobs in the USA and Canada…” Um. Resigned from jobs and given up the freebie grace and favour homes that came with the jobs, but kept their accrued pensions, he means? “Jerusalem & the Middle East, the Indian Ocean, South-East Asia, the Southern Cone, Rwanda, West Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Uganda, and Kenya” All well-known hotbeds of freedom and democracy and human rights.… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

JPM at the last elections to General Synod, Canon Sugden was not successful in getting re-elected.

Rosemary Hannah
Guest

Well, all things being equal, I would like to stand shoulder to shoulder with Christians in some of those places, Randal – for no fault of their own, they do not have their troubles to look for. The thing is, oppressing LGBT people is to me too high a price to pay. But yes, I would like to stand beside them as best I can.

Bill Dilworth
Guest
Bill Dilworth

‘”Jerusalem & the Middle East, the Indian Ocean, South-East Asia, the Southern Cone, Rwanda, West Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Uganda, and Kenya”…All well-known hotbeds of freedom and democracy and human rights. Is there any reason I want to be associated with such a list, anyway?’ Well, as far as I can tell, what used to be called the re-asserter movement in American Anglicanism is made up mostly of the Tea Party at prayer, so they wouldn’t be swayed by arguments based on freedom, democracy, or human rights (except insofar as they are contained in the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution) —… Read more »