As Fulcrum theological secretary, I offer the following few points concerning the posts about Fulcrum by JBE, Giles Fraser and Steve Watson:
1. JBE has commented about the founding of Fulcrum and Andrew Goddard’s role. My Fulcrum August newsletter, ‘Founding of Fulcrum’ shows that ‘proto-Fulcrum’ gathered first in October 2002, before the Reading controversy and the founding of Anglican Mainstream, and Andrew Goddard was part of Fulcrum from the beginning.
2. For Fulcrum’s original (and still valid) statement on sexual ethics, an issue raised by JBE and Steve Watson, see:
‘In the much-contested area of sexual ethics this means that the proper context for sexual expression is the union of a man and a woman in marriage. We will participate in debates on issues in sexual ethics arising today in the life of the Church and we identify as key references the CofE document Issues in Human Sexuality and Resolution 1.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference and True Union (a document shared with the Anglican Primates’ Meeting, Brazil 2003).’
See also our submission to the Lambeth Commission.
3. It was good to meet Giles Fraser at the launch of Fulcrum in November 2003 and yes, our aim then and now is to ‘renew the evangelical centre’. In our FAQ section, this is elucidated as:
‘It deliberately has two meanings: Fulcrum aims to renew the moderate centre of the evangelical tradition in the Church of England and also to renew the centre of the Church of England which is historically, and again currently, evangelical.
The sermon by Tom Wright launching Fulcrum may be seen on:www.fulcrum-anglican.org.uk/page.cfm?ID=118
4. Giles Fraser also suggests that we are an arm of Anglican Mainstream. This is not the case. Anglican Mainstream is a single issue campaigning network whereas Fulcrum, as may be seen by the subjects of our articles, covers the whole range of theological and missiological issues. Although both are conservative on issues of sexuality, on other issues we differ from Anglican Mainstream eg in our attitude to the irregular ordinations in Southwark, and in that we positively advocate the consecration of women to the episcopate.
5. Finally, Andrew Goddard mentioned Michael Poon’s crucial article on the varying status of the Kigali Communique and the Road to Lambeth document. They are not of equal weight, and this whole discussion needs to take this difference of weight seriously:
‘We need to read The Road to Lambeth against the official document Kigali Communique, and indeed not the other way around. They are not two parallel statements from Kigali that bear the same authority.’
This is Michael Poon’s important comment in his perceptive response to the CAPA report ‘The Road to Lambeth’:
‘Quo Vadis? – Questions along the Road from Lambeth – A response to CAPA’s Invitation’, by Michael Poon, Global South Anglican site, 2 October 2006.
In a key passage of the article, Poon comments:
‘Shortly before the Kigali Meeting met, Canterbury issued a statement announcing that he has invited Archbishop Drexel Gomez to head a Covenant Design Group to draft an Anglican Covenant. He confirmed that this will be ‘a major and serious focus for the Lambeth Conference’. The Primates at Kigali greeted this in the most enthusiastic language. They believed that ‘an Anglican Covenant [that is now a major and serious focus for Lambeth 2008!] will demonstrate to the world that it is possible to be a truly global communion where differences are not affirmed at the expense of faith and truth but within the framework of a common confession of faith and mutual accountability’ (Communique, 7). In other words, the Global South Primates affirmed in clearest possible terms their intent to contribute in the Covenant processes. The Covenant constitutes the test of faithfulness (and membership). Lambeth 2008 will be the defining moment for the Communion.
Indeed, are not the recommendations in the Report superseded by recent events? Is not the Spirit of God at work, giving us more than we have ever imagined possible? Does not this explain why the CAPA Primates themselves did not explicitly endorse it at Kigali?’