Friday, 6 February 2009
after the primates meeting
Updated again Sunday afternoon
The meeting is now finished, but the reports continue. Earlier reports can be found here and the text of communiqués here.
Pat Ashworth Church Times Primates agree: hold the moratoriums while we talk further (this is not in the paper edition)
Living Church George Conger Conservative Bishops Laud Outcome of Meeting, Archbishop’s Leadership
Martin Beckford Telegraph Anglican church leaders to bring in ‘relationship counsellors’ over sexuality dispute
Colin Coward Changing Attitude Primates meeting - Schism or division? - and refugees
ANiC Anglican Network in Canada responds to Primates’ Communique
Integrity Integrity Responds to Primates’ Communique
Guardian (Nigeria) Anglican primates call for Mugabe’s resignation
Update 13.30 GMT Friday
George Conger Religious Intelligence Anglican Primates agree mediation programme
Update 18.00 GMT Friday
Episcopal Café has further comment, see Conservatives playing possum?
This links to the statement issued by the Chicago Consultation Chicago Consultation Rejects False Choice.
Update 23.00 GMT Friday
Statement of Bishop Robert Duncan on the Alexandria Primates Meeting
Update 0900 GMT Sunday
ENS has a comprehensive roundup of American responses to the primates meeting, in Primates’ communiqué, Windsor report draw praise, criticism. This includes:
The leader of the effort to form a new Anglican entity in North America said February 6, through a spokesman, that he is “certainly open to mediated conversations” called for by the primates of the Anglican Communion, but added that his organization “will need to see what exactly is being proposed and what ground rules can be agreed on before committing further.”
The Rev. Peter Frank said he was authorized to speak on behalf of Robert Duncan, the deposed bishop of Pittsburgh who led the majority of that diocese’s members and leadership out of the Episcopal Church. Duncan is one of a number of individuals and groups who have responded to the primates’ communiqué and an accompanying report from the Windsor Continuation Group issued February 5.
As the ENS report notes later on,
Duncan made no mention of the primates’ call for mediated talks in his official statement responding to the February 5 communiqué issued after the leaders or primates of the Anglican Communion’s 38 provinces ended their five day meeting in Alexandria, Egypt. Instead, in that statement, he portrayed the members of the proposed new “Anglican Church in North America” as people “who are attempting to remain faithful amidst vast pressures to acquiesce to beliefs and practices far outside of the Christian and Anglican mainstream.”
The roundup does not include:
Anglican Journal Marites N. Sison Hiltz welcomes proposed ‘mediated conversation’.
And there is another post from Colin Coward at Changing Attitude Moratoria - who agrees with all three?
Update 1700 GMT Sunday
In a report in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette by Ann Rogers Factions encouraged by Anglican leaders’ statement:
Posted by Simon Sarmiento on
Friday, 6 February 2009 at 8:46am GMT
The Rev. James Simons, chairman of the standing committee that governs the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh, also was pleased with the statement. But he focused on a footnote that says talks with Bishop Duncan’s proposed province would require a commitment “that they would not seek to recruit and expand their membership by means of proselytization.”
“They specifically ask this new group to stop doing what it is doing so that they can enter into negotiations,” the Rev. Simons said.
“I would take that to mean that the [other] diocese would stop actively recruiting parishes and individuals to join the realignment.”
Deacon Peter Frank, spokesman for the Anglican diocese, said the diocese was not yet sure how to interpret the injunction against “proselytization.”
“We are going to have to see what the intent of the primates is and what they believe they were saying in that. Our main concern is for the tens of thousands of people that are already outside of the Episcopal Church. We are bringing those people together,” he said.
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
The ANiC states:
"We appreciate the Primates’ recognition that members of the Common Cause Partnership and the Anglican Church in North America are fully Anglican..."
Where on earth do they get that from in the Communique? It states:
"14. The Windsor Continuation Group Report examines in Section H the question of parallel jurisdictions, particularly as raised by the Common Cause Partnership, a coalition of seven different organisations which have significantly differing relationships with the Anglican Communion. The Report identifies some of the difficulties in recognising the coalition among the Provinces of the Anglican Communion. Significant concerns were raised in the conversation about the possibility of parallel jurisdictions. There is no consensus among us about how this new entity should be regarded, but we are unanimous in supporting the recommendation in paragraph 101 of the Windsor Continuation Group Report...We earnestly desire reconciliation with these dear sisters and brothers for whom we understand membership of the Anglican Communion is profoundly important."
All the primates affirm is:
1. The ACNA is a coalition of seven different organisations.
2. They each have significantly differing relationships with the AC.
3. There are difficulties among the provinces about recognising ACNA.
4. There is no concensus on how the ACNA should be regarded.
5. All are agreed the ACNA cannot dictate terms regarding membership of the AC, nor should it proselytise.
6. The ACNA desires membership of the AC.
How does that add up to the primates recognising ACNA as 'fully Anglican"?
Gregory Venables is proof that a valiant flea may breakfast on the lip of a lion.
He can spin all he likes but nowhere in the Primates Communique do I find support for the statement that "A liberal expression of Christianity is not Christianity".
Many of us would argue that the crude fundamentalism of Venables & Co. is not Anglican in any meaningful way and very possibly not even Christian.
“A liberal expression of Christianity is not Christianity [as we know it],” Bishop Venables said."
Hear that, liberals? You are officially not Christians. But then, I'm probably not a Christian in his eyes either. And note the lack of definition of this "liberal expression of Christianity". That's because there really isn't one. There are various more or less liberal interpretations of certain things, some of them, granted, way out in left field. But you can't attack and hate a disparate group, so you invent one: the liberal, faithless, "reassessors". You are then free to make reference to these non-entities as the true enemies, and hold them up as The Ones We Have To Fear In Order To Be Real Christians.
All the same, here we have a situation where the GAFCONites didn't get everything their way, yet they are praising it. That's pretty clear evidence of the work of the Spirit, no.
"members of the Common Cause Partnership and the Anglican Church in North America are fully Anglican...""
Does this come a s a surprise? They have members who have been "Not in the Communion" for quite some time, indeed, used to include poeple who would identify as Baptist! Naturally, such people would be concerned as to their identification as "Anglican". That's why, despite there never having been any official statement from the church as to the "Anglicanness" opf any of these groups, it is being raised as though it is a huge issue. It IS an issue for those who broke communion 20 or more years ago, since they have spent that time passing themselves off as the True Anglicans, just like the Fauxrthodox are doing now.
"Commenting on the Windsor Continuation Report, [Rowan Cantuar] said there was a need for a shift of focus, from the autonomy of individual Provinces with communion added on, to communion with autonomy and accountability following from there."
What does he even mean by "communion"? What do any of us mean? Unless we get some kind of definition of this term (beyond mere church-y blather like "We all have communion-in-Christ": yes, but???), this is going to round and round and round (going NOWHERE)
"[Rowan Cantuar] said each province has a procedure for discipline but there is no Communion-wide canon law. He would like to see a convergence of canon law. Why didn’t he intervene in other provinces, he was asked. Because I took canonical promises as Archbishop of Canterbury and they define what I can and cannot do."
Oh yes, *those* canonical promises. The ANGLICAN ones! Why CAN'T we look to Tradition? To our fore-runners in the Faith? Maybe they had a well-founded REASON for limiting the ABC, and Communion-wide Power(Over)? [Oh yeah: that business w/ the Pope's peeps burning them at the stake for failing to abide "moratoria" and such!]
Finally: "The Windsor Continuation Group report shows that the moratoria are holding badly but not completely ignored. There has been restraint on  the consecration of openly gay bishops and  approved rites of blessing [of same-sex couples]."
I could have sworn there were *three* moratoria. Perhaps certain Primates---if they're back from their overseas incursions---could remind us about that third one. >:-/
There hasn't been any "restraint" on the third, JCF.
"Completely ignored! just about sums it up!
Well it is quite nice in passing that the conservative realignment primates did not whip out their weaponized doctrines at the drop of every hat at this last meeting.
That said, the real effective changes are still the changes on the ground. Juxtapose.
1.A new backward conservative thinking entity has been born vs. the majority of USA court rulings are going against realignment believer claims to money and property.
2.XDuncan and party continue to claim that antigay is Jesus Way, plain and simple...vs believers in Canada newly asking for dioceses to authorize married couple blessings anyways.
3.Venebles continues to let small tent believers affiliate with his province ... vs. nobody cares nearly as much now, just to the extent that small tent folks are clearly NOT bringing tons of money and property with them from raided TEC holdings, at least not to the extent formerly predicted.
4.Conservatives are still committed to raids on the rest of us... vs. the rest of us are getting fairly hip to their SOP, so are more often prepared ahead of time for their next grand stand or raid.
5.Despite all efforts, the big tents are still standing ... vs. xDuncan and company counting on being able to replace all big tents, once they are recognized as a new province. The catch?Any success in this strategy clearly telegraphs that somebody else will be next, once TEC has been dismantled by xDuncan and his guerrilla believer forces. Just who, exactly, wants to be next after he is finished with tearing up TEC?
The really big USA fact on the ground is that for the moment the public failures of the neocon takover are showcased for everybody to see. How, then, can this same strategy be immediately defined as a success when it comes to collapsing the global Anglican big tents?
Will this realignment that failed in government, economics, education, and social-cultural life in USA still be a success when it comes to Anglicans? Is that because Anglicans are way stupider than the average USA citizen? Because Anglican institutions and ideas are more backward looking? What is the realignment point, again? Oh yes, Canada and USA are demonic?
Such good news. Bravo, keep it up, Venebles, Orombi, xDucan, xIker, and all.
"Are the coalition members refugees?
Earlier in the week, one of the African Global South primates described the dissidents from the Episcopal Church as ‘refugees’. Perhaps dissident is a loaded word and not one they would choose for themselves. They see themselves as ‘standing firm’, mainstream, orthodox – and I would describe the faith of Changing Attitude supporters with exactly the same words".
- Colin Coward, Pruimates' Conference Report -
Like Colin Coward, I think that the word *Refugees*, applied by a Global South Primate to the situation of the departing dissidents, is incorrect - in that it implies an entity which has been 'driven out' from its homeland - by force. This cannot be said of the ACNA Grouping, which has accummulated from a variety of cultural dissidents outside of the 'homeland', united only in their fear of a prophetic liberalism within their original homeland (together with a few assorted sectarian groups along for the ride).
On the other hand, the LGBT Community are fighting to remain within their 'homeland' which is the inclusive Body of Christ - the Church of their Baptism, in which they wish to remain, despite the protestations of the 'dissidents', who would have them expelled, as 'un-holy'.
Loyaly to our roots prevents most of us from wanting to renounce our Baptismal membership of the Church into which Christ has called us. There is no sense here of wanting refugee status, but it is what the sola scriptura purists would like to see us assume - both LGBT's and Sympathisers.
It is the possibility of a new hermeneutic, based on the Biblical principles of justice and mercy that keeps us in the fold. May it continue.
Am I alone in wondering why the Windsor Report already has a 'continuation group' when its recommendations have yet to be synodically accepted or approved across the Anglican Communion? If I were to give credance to the WCG's utterances it would have to follow on from Bishop Victoria Matthews renunciation of her episcopal orders for the sake of 'unity' within the Anglican Communion. It is a scandal that she wishes to ban others when her own presence in the Order of Bishops causes as much division and even more theological disagreement. But I fear that this may be too simplistic a view of what is going on to have any hope of effecting the thought patterns of Primates, Provinces, and Synods.