Saturday, 24 May 2008

two American views

Two unrelated recent articles from Episcopal Church commentators worth reading:

Doug LeBlanc wrote for Episcopal Life about Staying involved.

Since I began reporting on the Episcopal Church in the early 1990s, conservatives have gone through a few different regroupings: Episcopalians United begat the American Anglican Council, which begat the Anglican Communion Network, which begat the Common Cause Partnership. An important change since General Convention in 2003 is that each regrouping has brought many conservatives ever closer to leaving the Episcopal Church. I was beginning to wonder what any remaining conservative presence within TEC might look like in the next few years.
I was fairly sure we did not need another group with a national headquarters, a logo and regular conferences. I believed that conservatives within TEC needed to find some way between the poles of departure and mere acquiescence to the more provocative resolutions of General Convention.

I’ve now heard some encouraging notes for a conservative future within TEC. Two hours of audio, posted on the website of St. Andrew’s Church in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina (, suggest that the conservative future sounds assertive rather than aggressive and hopeful rather than despairing…

Andrew Gerns watched the press conference held earlier this week in New York City, and wrote this article: Taking an appreciative path at Lambeth.

The conventional wisdom is wrong. At least about the Lambeth Conference.

I watched the video news-conference by The Rev. Dr. Ian Douglas and the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts-Schori yesterday. I had these big ideas about live-blogging it, but that wasn’t practical. I am glad I didn’t. In attempting to draw immediate conclusions, I would have missed the heart of the story.

My gut feeling was very positive…that the attempt is to build a basis for resolution of thorny issues by building on relationships. But I was still perplexed, at a time when Anglican divisions are at their highest and most delicate…how can we move forward? And when everyone is itching for a solution (theirs) how can consensus be reached?

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Saturday, 24 May 2008 at 6:58pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: ECUSA

Well he disagrees with me but I agree with him here:

"witness the blatant disregard for the Bishop of Jerusalem and their disinterest in the local situation. For the GAFCONites, Jerusalem is not a place where real people live but it is an historical and religious theme-park to be viewed from bus windows, hotel conference rooms and through guided tours. It is a backdrop that makes a political statement."

I think it is a very good entry, but it is just that the minority issues form a pressure cooker that has to either be dealt with or cooled. The problem is that there are people coming who want it all dealt with, and so do those at the theme park.

Posted by: Pluralist on Sunday, 25 May 2008 at 1:49am BST

In keeping with the Wheatley-Frieze essay, I am encouraged to ponder:

1. Why did global big tent Anglicanism form?
2. What particular range or continuum of cultural and other global variances support its creation?
3. What keeps big tent Anglicanism alive and growing?
4. What keeps big tent Anglican believer members connected?
5. What types of leadership are needed to nourish big tent Anglicanism?
6. Why do a range of different people in big tent Anglican life become leaders?
7. What types of leadership interfere with Anglicanism remaining a big tent, or even expanding further as a big tent?
8. What happens after a healthy big tent Anglican network of covenant relationships forms?
9. What's next?

10. If we understand these dynamics and the life-cycle of emergence, what can we do as leaders, believers, activists and social entrepreneurs to continue to intentionally foster big tent emergence?

Sheepishly, since I am hardly a bishop, not even a proper believer as defined from rightwing Anglican venues, I strongly recommend these and other ponderings to the near future Lambeth.

Given the USA shenanigans of IRD and other rightwing conformers, I am bold to add:
11. What happens to a thriving global range of overlapping Anglican communities of practice when deliberately assaulted by campaigners who have little or no admiration for the existing communities of practice?
12. How do thriving communities of practice respond, to defend, to learn from, and to re-stabilize diverse communities of practice across occasions of attacking campaigners?

Posted by: drdanfee on Sunday, 25 May 2008 at 6:24pm BST
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