Comments: General Synod day 1 press and other reports

The ACNS article caption reads:"Justin Welby calls for greater Anglican Communion say in selection of successor." However inside the article the vision is scaled way back in that participation from the wider Communion means participation by Primates. " ...inclusion of five Anglican Primates ...would result in 'a balanced and diverse representation of the entire Anglican Communion.' ”

Clearly this advances the dream of many of the primates for a kind of Anglican curia.

The Communion will move towards a kind of quasi-college of Cardinals electing a quasi-pope. Perhaps the next ABC will have a new honorific i.e. 'your little holiness.' You know, like the Austin Powers movie, with the character 'mini-me'

Instead, why not representative clergy and laity from the Anglican Consultative Council chosen by them from their membership? Too unsettling for the CEO leadership model no doubt.


Posted by Rod Gillis at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 1:15am GMT

re the ABC's call to open up the CNC process for the election of his successor - to the majority Global South Provinces; how would this work out when the Primate of All Nigeria (GAFCON) has called for conservative Evangelicals in the C. of E. to abandon the Church in protest against the Church of England's opennes to Same Sex Blessings?

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 2:10am GMT

My word, this is a turn up for the books - the C of E raising "serious concerns" about Christian Freemasons. Archbishop Fisher must be spinning in his grave in Trent village churchyard and I suspect the Bishop of Fulham may well have been wriggling in his seat during the debate!
How times change! At a debate on "Freemasonry and Christianity: Are they compatible?" in the General Synod on 11th July 1987 Archbishop Habgood described Freemasonry as "a fairly harmless eccentricity". I well remember the fuss many years ago when I was a curate and vetoed the singing of the Masonic Hymn ("Great Architect Divine") at the funeral of a churchwarden. I still bear the scars on my back but Father stood firm!

Posted by Father David at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 6:21am GMT

“The work of the Archbishop in the Anglican Communion is quite demanding and quite extensive. The representative of the . . . other members of the Anglican Communion – about 90 per cent from the Global South – when I was interviewed was the Archbishop of Wales [Barry Morgan] who is a wonderful man who did a wonderful job as Archbishop of Wales, but may not have entirely represented the Global South.”

Will this ship sail?

Posted by crs at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 6:32am GMT

The wider Anglican Communion should have a say in selecting the next Archbishop of Canterbury only if the role formally splits into two, one person becoming the nominal head of the Anglican Communion, the other becoming the head of the Church of England.

Posted by Erika Baker at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 7:17am GMT

"Will this ship sail?"

Appointing an Archbishop of Canturbury whose priority was "the global south" rather than England would be a disaster. It would almost certainly mean crude shouting about how terrible homosexuality is and an attempt to reverse SSM legislation, and would pretty rapidly lead to the CofE looking like a group of cranky bigots whom no-one would take seriously outside the narrow world of cranky bigots.

Posted by Interested Observer at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 7:40am GMT

Thank you for confirming my view, IO. I do wish the CofE would cut the ABC loose from this idea of special role. As I have reiterated, an AC led by a CofE ABC just has too many problems in the present day. The CofE has enough challenges to work through within its own context and no one seriously doubts that. The fact that the ABC refers not to himself but his successor may mean this is just an idea in the air that everyone knows will go nowhere. A hope for the retention of some kind of AC led by the CofE for historic reasons, but now no longer meaningful or durable. It has timed out.

Posted by crs at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 8:43am GMT

Oh Dear. Once again, Justin Welby's purchase on Anglican polity and ecclesiology is laid bare. The Archbishop of Canterbury is what it says on the tin: not a quasi-Pope with primacy of jurisdiction; but Primate of All-England.

This could be a trojan horse for a centralising magisterium, which would not only undermine the autonomous nature of each Anglican province, but also diminish the primacy of the diocese in Anglican polity.

Posted by Michael Mulhern at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 9:43am GMT

The suggestion of more Communion representation on the Canterbury CNC should be seen for what it is—an attempt to ensure that the next Archbishop is conservative, someone who will hold the line on same-sex marriage, and who therefore will not alienate further the Global South provinces.

So the Communion tail would wag the Church of England dog more energetically—to the advantage of the conservative evangelical wing.

This is a recipe for the Church of England to become a narrow and extreme sect that is soon disestablished.

Posted by JeremyB at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 9:44am GMT

I agree with Erika. The Archbishop of Canterbury is Primate of All England with a place in the British Constitution. The Church of England is unlikely to be disestablished during Archbishop Welby's term of office. The Archbishop's office isn't quasi papal despite romantic talk of alterius orbis papa a few generations back and parachuting in a Primate from outside the UK would I suspect lead to all sorts of problems especially as the Communion is in a fractious and divided state.

Posted by Perry Butler at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 9:45am GMT

Interesting stuff on the pervasiveness of Freemasonry amongst the Church of England hierarchy in the 1950s and especially Archbishop Fisher's hostility to criticism of it in the chapter on Revd Walton Hannah (author of "Christian by Degrees" et al) in Michael Yeltons book "The South India Controversy and the converts of 1955-1956. Published by the ACHS in 2010.

Posted by Perry Butler at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 9:57am GMT

When the great Michael Ramsey became Archbishop of Canterbury, he looked at the pile of requests from across the world asking for his opinion and he asked a friend, "Have I to become a pope or just be a bishop of Canterbury?" The friend replied, "Off the cuff, Father, I would recommend you to be Bishop of Canterbury." Ramsey replied, "Yes, that's my opinion too but it wasn't my predecessor's."

Would we prefer Ramsey or Fisher be the presiding spirit over the appointment of the next Archbishop?

Posted by Barry at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 10:50am GMT

"someone who will hold the line on same-sex marriage"

That's a line which runs direct to disestablishment. If the CofE were so stupid as to attempt to campaign on the issue in the public sphere, it is hard to see how (for example) the monarch of the country could possibly be the senior figure of an organisation openly campaigning for a homophobic change in British legislation. The choice would, quite quickly, be disestablishment or republicanism.

Posted by Interested Observer at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 12:23pm GMT

To the CofE and ABC re: Anglican Communion: No one is demanding that you have this role. "Just say No." The Primates can then be pressed to work out how they understand the catholic claims of Anglicanism for a new day. Neither Ramsey nor Fisher lived at a time when the most vibrant locations of Anglicanism were outside the British Isles. It's anachronistic to invoke them in 2018, though consistent with a certain kind of anglo-centrism.

Posted by CRS at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 12:26pm GMT

Will this ship sail? Like H.M.S. Pinafore.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 1:00pm GMT

Constitutionally speaking, I think I'm right that the Archbishop of Canterbury is still appointed by the Monarch on the recommendation of the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister has delegated the authority to the CNC (just as, more generally, Parliament has delegated its authority over the Church to the General Synod). What is the view of the Prime Minister, the parliamentary Ecclesiastical Committee, and so on about the transfer of sovereignty implicit in the proposal? If Archbishop Welby wants to complete the process of disestablishment he's entirely free to propose that, but he should take care not to push too hard in the direction of a choice between serving the people of England and the bishops of the "Global South".

Posted by Bernard Silverman at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 2:59pm GMT

RG: Glad to hear it!

Let the AC find its way without a role for the ABC and CofE is some different position.

Catholicity in Anglican dress is going to have to find a form across the Communion as a whole and at present the ABC and CofE have challenges enough of their own.

Posted by CRS at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 3:31pm GMT

"Let the AC find its way without a role for the ABC and CofE is some different position.

Catholicity in Anglican dress is going to have to find a form across the Communion as a whole and at present the ABC and CofE have challenges enough of their own."

That ship won't sail either though Christopher. Catholicity in Anglican dress is what the C of E has to offer the Anglican Communion. There is not much'Catholicity in Anglican dress' evident in the Global South.

The challenges that we have of our own are no different to the challenges that the Anglican Communion already faces in some parts, and will face in every part in due course. The C of E has the opportunity to model what will be needed in the whole of Anglican Communion.

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 5:04pm GMT

There's also the somewhat knotty problem of state events. It's likely that probably Welby, certainly his immediate successor, and probably the archbishop after that will between them do two funerals of serving monarchs (Elizabeth and Charles), two coronations (Charles and William) and the marriage of an heir apparent (George, although that might be further in the future).

The death of Elizabeth II and the coronation of Charles will together be an immense deal, coming as they do in the midst of economic turmoil, a transfer of cultural power from boomers to Gen Xers, Brexit and who knows what. The idea that someone who is a conservative bigot appointed to appease "The Global South" could carry that off is laughable; the Royal Family must realise that Charles is hardly the beneficiary of great public love, and therefore this will be a crucial moment in the history of the monarchy. They would be crazy to agree to events of that sensitivity being seen to provide a platform for divisive hatred, and a homophobic and misogynistic ABC would offer just that.

The aftermath of Elizabeth's death will be politically and constitutionally challenging, and the ABC is a key part of that. We can't predict the details, because George VI died sixty five years ago this week and the country is a very different place. But it's going to be a huge thing, and now is not the time to use the appointment of the ABC to appease conservatives.

Posted by Interested Observer at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 5:26pm GMT

What caught my attention was the suggestion that increased representation from The Communion equals hierarchy and Primates rather than looking to the Anglican Consultative Council and its broader basis of discernment. This is telling. It signals a mind set.

Notwithstanding, we should be reducing and not enhancing the role of all the so called 'instruments of Communion' in general and the role of primates in particular. Ironically, some of the primates accord to themseleves more politcal power while meeting as a group than they have when at home in their respective provinces.

Let's keep the office of the ABC in the relationship column and not on a corporate 'org. chart'.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 6:53pm GMT

Oh, great, another round of uninformed bashing of masons. In an uncertain age we need groups to bash. Yet most of the complaints are, as usual, not only baseless but rather uninformed.

And, sorry, Fr. David, that may be a hymn that some of the brothers in some lodges like to sing. But there is no "Masonic hymn." It is a shame that, in the context of a funeral for a Christian man who, when his family and friends were in grief, you chose to promote uninformed masonic bashing instead of caring for their needs. Having looked up the hymn in question I can see nothing objectional in it that any Christian leader would think it worth a brag about refusing.

(and yes, I'm an American Episcopalian and a mason, and I firmly think that it is past time for enough of us to stand up and say enough of this nonsense, and enough of the biased and somewhat crazy conspiracy stuff that a few unhinged evangelical leaders and books have promoted.)

Posted by Dennis Roberts at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 7:32pm GMT

Let the Archbishop of Canterbury BE the ABC - no longer a semi-papal figure agonising how best to meet the demands of the likes of GAFCON Prelates, who have their own precious ideas of what it might be to be an Anglican. The people of England need their own polity - without having to kowtow to any other cultural expectations - based on outdated Victorian ideas of gender and sexuality.

And, let every other Anglican Church around the world pursue its own understanding of the Mercy and Love of God in Christ for their own cultural milieu. Let the Good News abound - not schismatic differentiation - which is antithetical to the theology of Unity in the Body of Christ, rather than in fundamentalist puritanical separatism.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 7:37pm GMT

Welby's call to allow representation, especially from the "Global South" in the nomination of the ABC and ABY is a formula for the end of Anglicanism - which rejected a Pope or foreign religious powers interfering with local religious sensibilities. Much of the Global South is hostile to women's ordination. Let alone SSM. This would ensure that there is no female ABC or ABY in the foreseeable future. It is a way to force extreme conservativism on CoE's liberal majority for generations to come.This idea is not driven by differing theologies on divorce or lay eucharist (Australia). It's how to enshrine global homophobia. It's disgusting. There's already an ACC and a Secretary General. That's how a communion should operate, not with coercive overseers.

I can't imagine this idea taking hold. But the proposal is very telling.

About that ship... At least H.M.S. Pinafore was sea-worthy. This is more like the Titanic. However, now I am ear-wormed by "I am the model of a modern major-general..." Which is a step up from Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On...

Posted by Cynthia at Friday, 9 February 2018 at 10:22pm GMT

"Catholicity in Anglican dress is what the C of E has to offer the Anglican Communion."

Offer it as you will. In the form of an ABC in a special role vis-a-vis the Communion, however, it is harder to defend theologically given the character of the CofE as established. And then there is the workload issue to which +Welby refers.

“The work of the Archbishop in the Anglican Communion is quite demanding and quite extensive. The representative of the . . . other members of the Anglican Communion – about 90 per cent from the Global South – when I was interviewed was the Archbishop of Wales [Barry Morgan] who is a wonderful man who did a wonderful job as Archbishop of Wales, but may not have entirely represented the Global South.'

Posted by CRS at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 7:27am GMT

Maybe if all masons were open about their membership and so any potential nepotism (which is the usual concern rather than world-controlling conspiracies) can be monitored. Certainly it seems to me that disclosure ought to be mandatory for anyone working in the public sector, and the church ought to have the same requirement for holders of jobs or offices.

Posted by Jo at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 8:22am GMT

CRS, you shouldn't worry too much about securing the global interests of the Global South Primates in the Anglican Communion Most of them are in fellowship wuith the GAFCON sodality, which already has its owen Confession of Faith; in its self-proclaimed 'Jerusalem Statement.

GAFCON has already announced - in its J.S. - its voluntary separation from the ACC - even to the extent of raising up its own 'Primates Council' - which operates independently of the ACC, calling its own meetings and international Assemblies.

If this is not a schismatic action, then what about GAFCON's patronage of ACNA and AMIE, which aims to replace the authority of the local Anglican Church - seeemingly, in the latter case. with no disciplinary action by the ABC or ABY?

Add to this the recent call of the Chair of GAFCON - the Archbishop of Nigeria's - invitation for con/evos to abandon the C. of E. and you have an already complicit schismatic entity vying for recognition as the only 'Orthodox' Anglican Church

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 10:24am GMT

"Offer it as you will." Thanks Christopher, but it does not need to be offered, it's a current state. I realise it's one that doesn't suit everyone, including you, but it's the way it is. Any change from that needs careful negotiation, and not just some decision from the current ABC, or the Global South. I suggest that for most people in the C of E Gafcon and elements of the Global South doesn't look at all Anglican. It looks like a narrow fundamentlist sect. They've been threatening to walk for years. Let them go and start their own version of Anglicanism if they want to. But they won't be part of historic Anglicanism, just as ACNA isn't, and just as your beloved pseudo Diocese of Southern Carolina isn't. The only way forward for historic Anglicanism is one that involves what the C of E already offers.

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 11:27am GMT

Dear Mr Godsall. It was your language. I was attempting to respond on your terms.

You need to read a bit more carefully. The 'current state' is being questioned by your ABC. As others have noted, one way forward is to relieve the ABC of this extra workload. Or separate out the CofE from leadership burdens/encumbrances.

Beyond that, you could calm down the tone and try to talk intelligently about the present state of the Communion, historical catholic claims, and the ABC's own language. What in the world SC as a pseudo diocese has to do with what is under discussion is beyond me.

Posted by CRS at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 12:05pm GMT

As usual, Ron, I have no idea what you are talking about. Find anywhere in my comments anything about the global south primates. You are the only one referring to gs primates in your comments.

I have said that the ABC in the CofE having a special role vis-a-vis the AC is problematical.

"Let the Archbishop of Canterbury BE the ABC."

Je suis d'accord.

Posted by CRS at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 1:30pm GMT

"What in the world SC as a pseudo diocese has to do with what is under discussion is beyond me."

Oh that's simple isn't it Christopher? It's a clear example of what happens when one small group, influenced by one bishop and a few dozen politically minded people can do when they claim to be closer to historic Anglicanism than their host group.

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 3:01pm GMT

The Archbishop of Canterbury has a role in the Anglican Communion. It is a determining role. Member churches of the Communion are those that are in Communion with the ABC. It is the ABC who calls the bishops to Lambeth, who convenes Primates' meetings,and who is ex officio chair of the ACC. See also: Discerning in Obedience # 5.19, " In the case of Canterbury there is also a representative of the Primates of the Anglican Communion." These are facts that are not in dispute.

+ Welby's comments are about adding more primates ( emphasis on more) to CNC with regard to selecting a new ABC. His suggestion if enacted would undermine consultation and strengthen hierarchical ascendancy.

No one understands the Communion level role of the ABC better than the Primates. It is why the occupant of that office figures so prominently in their political strategies.

What is meant by 'catholic' in the context of the AC or in any context for that matter? There was a time when catholicism was identified with a normative culture; but culture is no longer perceived as normative. Equating a catholic view of sexuality with a patriarchal or hetero-sexist culture is a form of politcal subterfuge.

Neither The imposition of a cultural hegemony nor the making over a relational office (even a foundational one like that of ABC) into a quasi-papacy ought not to be confused with enhancing the catholic character of Anglicanism.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 5:59pm GMT

Even the Pope of Rome is chosen by representatives of the clergy of that city and its suburbs, albeit the Cardinal electors are only titular bishops, priests and deacons of the Roman churches, yet the principle is maintained.

The Patriarch of Moscow has no role in the election of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople.

The excesses of the Papacy largely sprang from the idea that the Pope was ex officio the Bishop of Rome rather than the BoR being ex officio the Pope.

If Anglicans need a world primus then perhaps the role should not be tied to a particular see, rather like the Scottish primus, but if it is tied to Canterbury it should not influence the choice of a bishop for Kent and Primate of England.

As Pope Gregory may have said, anyone calling himself a universal bishop would be the precursor of the Antichrist.

Posted by T Pott at Saturday, 10 February 2018 at 9:17pm GMT

Re T Poot "The excesses of the Papacy largely sprang from the idea that the Pope was ex officio the Bishop of Rome rather than the BoR being ex officio the Pope." Interesting observation.

However, with regard to the ABC ( the office of) it is more accurate to say that the Anglican Communion is a creature of the ABC, the ABC is not a creature of it.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Sunday, 11 February 2018 at 1:22am GMT

"...the Anglican Communion is a creature of the ABC, the ABC is not a creature of it."

Maybe in the mists of time. Sounds like a loyalist Canadian take.

Missionary societies brought the BCP to the colonies, and the colonial states because dioceses with parishes, administered by the Bishop of London. The first Bishop in PECUSA was consecrated in Aberdeen. The next two were consecrated in London. The ABC played no specific role in this.

Latterly, the Primates were asked to exercise enhanced authority and under +RDW met annually. They were *asked* to exercise this. The ABC responded to this request; he did not make it.

At present this entire series of developments is practically otiose given the dysfunction across the board. That may be an inevitable development. It isn't something in the ABC's gift however. He is being swept along by currents as well. Or inundated, if you prefer.

Posted by CRS at Sunday, 11 February 2018 at 8:45am GMT

Re CRS, "Missionary societies brought the BCP to the colonies....." etc. etc.

Yes, yes, and Greg the Great sent Augustine to Canterbury when the Henry VIII was just a twinkle in God's eye. An accurate set of facts pertaining to general history and completely anachronistic with regard to the remarks made by Archbishop Welby regarding CNC composition under discussion on this thread.

Do you disagree with Bishop Idowu Fearon when he said, speaking about ACNA in September 2017: “To be part of the Communion, a province needs to be in communion with the See of Canterbury and to be a member of the Instruments of the Communion."

If you are member of the Anglican Communion it is because you belong to a province that is in Communion with Canterbury. This is a fact.

It has nothing to do with the mists of time or the 'but...but...but what if ' equivocations that flow from fertile imaginations.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Sunday, 11 February 2018 at 3:10pm GMT

However, now I am ear-wormed by "I am the model of a modern major-general..."

Cynthia, I realise that you have very little conscious control of your "ear-worms", but do note that that particular song has very little relevance to the sea-worthiness or otherwise of HMS Pinafore, as it comes from "The Pirates of Penzance".

Posted by Edward Prebble at Sunday, 11 February 2018 at 8:12pm GMT

"Now that legislation has been passed to enable women to become bishops the Church of England is
fully and unequivocally committed to all orders of ministry being open equally to all, without reference to gender..."

If that's the case, then isn't it impossible for anyone to be involved in the appointment of the next Archbishop of Canterbury if they don't believe that women can ascend to being Archbishop of Canterbury? That being the case, how can Bishop Welby suggest involving Primates who don't support female bishops?

Posted by Kate at Sunday, 11 February 2018 at 10:58pm GMT

Dear RG

What I think is that when you make statements of assertion about membership the game is up. I know JI-F well. His remark was directed to his Enemy #1, and his main motivating force. His own Province of Nigeria.

Did SE Asia care at all when at their last provincial gathering they declared impaired communion with the SEC? Did some object, 'but they are on the official rolls!' No. Did they check in with the ABC to determine whether they could be in communion with Gafcon? Of course not.

This is the present state of affairs. The ABC wanting to have GS involvement in the CofE is a reflection of it. Unraveling while clutching a membership list does not a Communion make.

Posted by CRS at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 7:41am GMT

"If you are member of the Anglican Communion it is because you belong to a province that is in Communion with Canterbury. This is a fact."

Thank you Rod for the clarity. I think Christopher and others who live by Jude 1:3 forget that basic fact.

That verse about the faith delivered to the saints has theological implications for each Christian, but I'm not convinced that the Primate of Nigeria or the pseudo bishop of South Carolina have a monopoly on the interpretation of that verse. Even if they did, the very basis of Anglican ecclesiological polity allows for a breadth that they don't quite allow. GAFCON and ACNA are just discovering that unity isn't quite so simple as it sounds. Somewhere reality has to meet simplistic theology and simplistic ecclesiology.

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 8:08am GMT

Re: CRS @ 7:41 a.m. Oh I get it. Bishop Idowu Fearon's statement is right when directed at Nigeria, but somehow not right when inconvenient for your argument?

With regard to South East Asia, that province is participating in Anglican realignment. Interesting that they are doing so while strategically remaining inside the Anglican Communion. This tends to support more my argument than yours with regard to the role of the ABC. What the province did was declare impaired communion with SEC. They did the same in 2003 with TEC. They recognize ACNA as a province. What they did not do was leave the Anglican Communion. What they cannot do is declare TEC and SEC out of or ACNA in The Anglican Communion.

SE Asia, SEC, TEC, my province, your province, are all in The Anglican Communion, all in Communion with Canterbury. Deal with it.

More globally there is not much point in engaging your arguments on those occasions when they are counter factual.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 2:00pm GMT

RE: Andrew Godsall on clarity. "...discovering that unity isn't quite so simple as it sounds." Agreed.

Unity is a struggle for all people of faith. I've jump started a lenten reading of Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook's, The Lights of Penitence. Interesting to read his mysticism against the backdrop of his politcal struggles in Judaism and alongside our current struggles in Anglicanism.

I think it is important, while not separating the two, to distinguish between the phenomena (pl.) of Anglicanism and the shape of The Communion as we have it. There was an Anglican past prior to the development of The Communion. There may be a future in which The Communion will be supplanted by something else.

I value the so called instruments of Communion and the foundational role of ABC. However I am extremely concerned that their relational and consultative core appears to 'devolving' in favour of hierarchialism.

I don't wish to deny members of ACNA, or ANiC, or even those who have gone over to the ordinariate their sense of being Anglican. (Some have returned from Rome either to The Communion or other Anglican bodies.)

The Anglican Communion has its inception with Lambeth 1867 called by Archbishop Longley although there are prototypical developments prior to that date. Membership is now clearly outlined. It is a good deal. I say we keep it.

Folks interested in a paper trail regarding the role of the ABC might see: Lambeths 1867; 1930 resolutions 48,49; 1968, resolution 69; 1970 resolution 12; and ABC Coggan on primates.

It will be interesting to look at the Lambeth trajectory using the coordinates 1867 -2020.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 3:15pm GMT

Dear RG

I had the pleasure of spending some time in Singapore last year giving lectures, and I know several of their Bishops and previous ABs.

I would put them in the category of, "feel sorry for the ABC/CofE, doing well here, don't need to stay away but don't need confidence in the ABC's office either. We will pray for him. Hope things can improve but isn't necessary for our anglicanism." As noted, most recently they declared out of communion with the SEC and in communion with Gafcon. So much for membership lists.

Then there are the liberals who do not like any pre-conceived role for the ABC vis-a-vis the Communion at all. There is a sampling of their views here. I see them at The Lead. Less of ABC the better.

Then there are the conservatives who do not want to attend any meetings until the ABC enforces X or Y.

Then there are liberals like you in Canada, some 'traditionalist' cheerio TEC types who like to see flow charts of apostolic succession and enjoy Lambeth glamour. Hong Kong, Japan, Celtic fringe, maybe S Africa, et al might be included in some loose way.

+JI-F understands well enough this reality. His animus is with Group 3 above and esp Nigeria. +Welby would like to find a way to keep the See of Canterbury ship afloat vis-a-vis the Communion. One can pray for him.

The happiest group above is #4, and you speak well on their behalf. It is also the group with the sharpest numerical decline and probably the smallest sliver of all the groups.

And then there is the CofE itself facing all kinds of issues. Prayers for +Welby. And stay away from ear-worms!

Posted by CRS at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 4:54pm GMT

So Christopher is there a 'qualitative difference' in the holiness and love exhibited by those you describe in these four different groups? Does any of this make a tiny bit of difference to our salvation?

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 5:48pm GMT

Re: CRS at 4:54 pm. " +JI-F understands well enough this reality..... Then there are liberals like you in Canada..."

You may wish to be 'JI-F's' unofficial press secretary (although he seems quite clear when he speaks for himself); but please do not speak for me, thank you very much.

I speak for no one but myself. Controversial analysis is my muse and I must follow my muse whether one be friend, foe, liberal, conservative.

My position, outlined in the several posts above,is offered with what I believe to be pertinent documentary evidence appropriately concise for a blog site.

Hope you find some coin, silver or otherwise, in your pancakes tomorrow. Le Mardi Gras! Laissez les bons temps rouler.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Monday, 12 February 2018 at 7:07pm GMT

RG, soi disant sage, muse, etc. You stated the Communion is the ABC's "creation." That is historically false and presently false. Your muse could use some factual tuning!

The Communion is the Lord's and will rise and fall in relation to him. The rest is admin.

But Lent approaches and it is time to tune into that channel. bien a vous.

Posted by CRS at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 7:32am GMT

Christopher you state that "The Communion is the Lord's and will rise and fall in relation to him."

Really? The Lord Jesus Christ created the Anglican Communion? How did I miss this essential fact in church history classes?

Posted by Andrew Godsall at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 7:56am GMT

RE: CRS at 7:32 am: "Your muse could use some factual tuning!"

While history, like science, is not the truth but is on the way to the truth (see: Lonergan), I can't take your advice given your penchant for counter factual argumentation.

"That is historically false and presently false".

Your opinion. I am making the opposite argument. The best hypothesis is that which best explains the evidence. You seem to prefer spin, second hand anecdotal chit chat from here and there, and the odd research technique that what a person clearly is on record as saying is somehow not what they said. Have you considered volunteering at the White House press office?
( :

Your comments on this here appear to cheer on the strategy of those primates engaged in Anglican realignment--realpolitik strategy with regard to the ABC.

Let me digress with a guess that the ill-fated Anglican Covenant figures into this. Perhaps ABC Welby's trial balloon about adding Primates to the CNC is perceived as a long game consolation prize too risky for covenanteers?

With regard to realigners and +Welby's primates both, I'm reminded of a catchy tune from H.M.S. Pinafore, "We sail the ocean blue, and our saucy ship's a beauty". Now there is an ear worm!

Bon Voyage.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 2:28pm GMT

Too recondite for me RG. And too bizarre in terms of speculation! Lenten peace should do you good.

Posted by crs at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 3:52pm GMT

Before we all get further aeriated about the role of the Anglican Communion to nominations to the See of Canterbury, it needs to be remembered that any change in the composition of the CNC, whether for Canterbury, York or any other diocese, will need a change in the Standing Orders of the General Synod, for which self-evidently Synod will need to vote. Discerning in Obedience, the O'Donovan report, has made some thoughtful suggestions both for Canterbury and York CNCs, particularly the balance of different members on the Canterbury CNC. Various strands of work will now commence to progress the reflections and recommendations and it is premature to speculate on the outcome or the kind of debates that will be needed to make longer-term changes.

Posted by Anthony Archer at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 4:10pm GMT

Mr Archer. For avoidance of doubt and repeating what I first said. I suspect this is Welby sending a cost free signal to the GS and perhaps one he believes in, but that is hostage to fortune and will never require any action on his own part. One could even read it as a letter in a bottle...

What it does acknowledge, even if judged with horror by a c of e protectorate, is the need for attention to ongoing viability in the role he occupies vis a vis AC realities.

Posted by crs at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 5:46pm GMT

Re: Anthony Archer, and may " The Lord Almighty Grant us a quiet night and a perfect end".

Posted by Rod Gillis at Tuesday, 13 February 2018 at 6:14pm GMT

Re: Anthony Archer on 13/02/18 at @4_10 pm: "...the O'Donovan report, has made some thoughtful suggestions ...particularly the balance of different members on the Canterbury CNC."

I have no doubt that a thoughtful process can follow upon Discerning in Obedience. However, that process will need to navigate very tricky waters when it comes to changes regarding Canterbury's role in the Communion.

One the one hand the suggestion that increasing the number of Primates (rather than, say, looking to add perhaps a lay representative or two from the Anglican Consultative Council) could end up putting the primates' cart before the ABC horse.

On the other hand not following through with an intentional link between the CNC and the role of the ABC in our Communion will play into the GAFCON playbook.

Notice the theme of this article from just last year: "Is the center of the Anglican Communion really an Archbishop, or a Cathedral? For the vast majority of Anglicans now living in the Global South, the center of the Anglican Communion is where the Gospel of Jesus Christ is preached ...if that place has a geographic center, it is the Global South—not Canterbury."

https://www.gafcon.org/news/anglicanism-in-spite-of-canterbury

The voices that want to sideline the ABC's role in The Communion are very clear about their why.

Otherwise, thanks for your plea to all of us to keep calm and carry on. ( :

Posted by Rod Gillis at Wednesday, 14 February 2018 at 1:22pm GMT

The more one thinks about the possibility of expanding consultation from the wider Anglican Communion on the the CNC regarding Canterbury, the more one sees possible places to look beyond the Primates group. For example, in addition to the Anglican Consultative Council why not tag a member of the International Anglican Women's Network.

Unlike some of the Primates' gatherings which have resulted in problem making for the Communion the Women's Network has been more adept at focusing on problem solving for The Communion. The Mothers Union may also be an organization to look to for prospective consultants.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Thursday, 15 February 2018 at 2:20pm GMT
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