Thinking Anglicans

alternative primatial oversight

Two items. First, the Diocese of Fort Worth’s Executive Council issued this (original is PDF file):

FORTWORTH, Texas – The Executive Council of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, meeting in regular session, today approved the following Resolution supporting the diocesan Standing Committee’s June 18 decision to seek Alternative Primatial Oversight.
Be it resolved that the Executive Council of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth endorses and affirms the appeal made to the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Primates of the Anglican Communion by the Standing Committee and Bishop of our diocese for Alternative Primatial Oversight and pastoral care.
The resolution came before the Council on the day following the conclusion of a special Summit Meeting in New York City. The Summit was called by the Archbishop of Canterbury for the purpose of “finding an American church solution to an American church problem,” as Bishop Iker expressed it in his statement on the meeting, which was also released today. Participants at the Summit, who included Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold and Presiding Bishop-elect Katharine Jefferts Schori, failed to reach any agreement.
The Standing Committee’s June 18 resolution came as a response to the election of Bishop Jefferts Schori to succeed Bishop Griswold. The election was held during the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church, which met in Columbus, Ohio. In late June and July, six other dioceses filed similar appeals, prompting the Archbishop of Canterbury to call for the Summit.
The Standing Committee is the Bishop’s council of advice; the Executive Council has power act for the Diocesan Convention when that body is not in session. Both bodies are elective. A further resolution affirming the appeal will come before the Diocesan Convention when it meets in plenary session on Saturday, Nov. 18.

Second, the Archbishop of Canterbury, in his pastoral letter yesterday, said this about it:

I have also received – as you will have done also – the appeals of seven dioceses of the Episcopal Church for ‘alternative primatial oversight’. As we move to reflecting on these requests, we have to acknowledge that we are entering uncharted waters for the Communion, with a number of large issues about provincial identity and autonomy raised for all of us. I write having just heard the outcome of the meeting in New York which was requested in order to see what might emerge from a carefully structured discussion between American Bishops of diverging views. So far, no structure has been agreed, but there is a clear sense that the process has been worthwhile and that it is not yet over. I am sure that there will be more need in the months ahead for such face-to-face discussion, and I continue to hope that colleagues will not take it for granted that there is a rapid short-term solution that will remove our problems or simplify our relationships for good and all without the essential element of personal, probing conversation.

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Roy Flinchbaugh
Roy Flinchbaugh
17 years ago

Would it be possible to deal with those churches & dioceses which differ from the ECUSA in the same fashion the Roman Catholic Church has dealt with the Byzantine Rite churches in its midst. It gets a mite complicated, and sometimes it seems as if they are not actually “one,” but it does have a way of working that the proposed intrusion of overseas bishops into US dioceses would, it appears to me, not. Has this been given any thought?

J. C. Fisher
17 years ago

Yes, Roy: it’s called “DEPO” (delegated episcopal pastoral oversight). Recognizing the *one* canonical authority (for which GC is the analog for the Roman pontiff—Papists reading here, please, no comments!), they can be *delegated* another bishop, w/ another rite. …but the Pope *doesn’t* worry that Byzantine Catholics will, at any moment, defect en masse/en-titled, to Constantinople. And neither should TEC have to worry about defections, among those few parishes whom it may delegate an alternative bishop (even if a foreign bishop, as +Peter Lee *delegated* +Lord Carey to confirm in Virginia). Unfortunately, we do NOT have such confidence, at this time…… Read more »

Prior Aelred
17 years ago

David Virtue has already described the ALPO dioceses as seceding from The Episcopal Church (which is esseentially correct, but refusing to accept the legally elected Presiding Bishop they are refusing to accept the constitutional authority to which all the clergy have solemnly sworn to accept). The Eastern Rite Roman Catholics accept the doctrinal position espoused the Latin Rite Catholics headed by the pope but have their own forms of worship (& generally their own canonical traditions). The situation is simply not comparable to the doctrinal & canonical objections of the dissidents (most of whom are quite content to use the… Read more »

David Huff
David Huff
17 years ago

The good Prior wrote, “David Virtue has already described the ALPO dioceses as seceding from The Episcopal Church…”

And so has Kim Byham, an attorney and member of the Episcopal Church’s Executive Council, who has a much greater weight of authority than the so-called Mr. “Virtue”

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