REPORT TO THE DIOCESE OF PITTSBURGH (Bishop Duncan)
October 2003, Ascension Church, 3 p.m. (following Evensong)
PRIMATES MEETING – WHAT HAPPENED?
- The “most
honest, most difficult” meeting any could recall.
- Power of prayer
and fall of the Holy Spirit reported.
- Questions of law
and “constitutionality” nearly derailed the meeting.
- The Communion’s
center and its power shifted to the Global South.
- The Primates
Meeting replaced the Anglican Consultative Council as the Communion’s key
decision-making body (between Lambeth Conferences).
- Rowan Williams
achieved presidency on his terms and his turf.
- The “limits of
Anglican diversity” were clearly delineated:
- Scripture and
Lambeth Conference teaching are determinative
- Provinces may
break communion with errant partners
- Ecumenical and
Inter-Faith considerations matter profoundly.
- Time to organize
provincial responses to schism provided (10/16-11/2).
PRIMATES MEETING – WHAT DID NOT HAPPEN?
Primates did not enter into ECUSA’s constitutional & legal battles.
was rebuked and given an ultimatum, but not expelled.
WITH ARCHBISHOP ROWAN WILLIAMS – WHAT HAPPENED?
Palace, 17 October 2003, with the Bishops of Pittsburgh, Albany, Central
and Fort Worth at the request of the American Anglican Council)
- The Communion
will experience significant realignment
- New Hampshire
will proceed despite ultimatum
whether the Presiding Bishop will participate
- Most provinces
will break with ECUSA and/or participants
- An orthodox (in
Communion) network in U.S. will emerge.
- In U.S. the
“territorial principle” will give way to something more complex, more like
Celtic missionary model.
- The Commission
called for will deal with 1 and 2 (above) seeking an “ecclesial path forward,”
but not with sexuality.
- The “Network of
Confessing Dioceses and Parishes” has Archbishop Rowan’s encouragement .
- Specifics will
be developed Stateside
- Mechanism for
requesting “adequate episcopal oversight “ is urgent
- Mission will be
at the heart of the network’s concern
- Assumption that
the Network will be open toward Canada and “continuing” Anglicans
- Resistance to
“free enterprise” quick fixes and Balkanization
- The Primates
Statement provides a mandate to move forward and direct conversations with
“815” can be undertaken
- Legal issues
cannot be settled by Canterbury or Primates
- The hour-long meeting
was gracious, pastoral, affirming and prayerful.