Thinking Anglicans

after Tanzania

Some items about the recent primates meeting.

Changing Attitude Scotland has issued this statement.

The Living Church had a lengthy report some time ago (but General Synod distracted me) from George Conger which is titled News Analysis: Behind the Scenes in Dar es Salaam. This contains a lot of background information about what went on. Well worth a read.

Andrew Brown, writing in the Church Times last week, criticised Rowan Williams for the “trick of selective quotation” in the article he had written for the Telegraph

…Something like that is present in Dr Williams’s article in The Daily Telegraph on Saturday. “One of the hardest things in all this has been to keep insisting on the absolute moral imperative of combating bigotry and violence against gay people, and the need to secure appropriate civic and legal protection for couples who have chosen to share their lives.”

Who is he trying to fool with this? Is he really describing the policy of the Nigerian Church? Or the Rwandan? There is a great deal that is subtle and illuminating in his article, but none of that portion describes the way that things are actually done, or discussed among the Primates, if we are to judge from the reports of others present at these meetings.

In a similar way, his article says that: “The suggestion of a structure in America to care for the minority tries to remove any need for external intervention.” This could only appear true if you knew nothing of the politics surrounding it.

But there is this uneasy nagging fear that, like a journalist, Dr Williams believes this stuff while he is writing it. I can’t honestly see what other motive he might have for saying it. Obviously, he knows as well as anyone else that Dr Jefferts Schori cannot satisfy her enemies within and outside the United States, and that every test she passes will be replaced by one that is harder.

The New York Times published this op-ed article, A Divorce the Church Should Smile Upon by Jack Miles.

World Magazine published Showdown in Africa by Edward Plowman:

The primates discussed a number of topics but spent almost the entire final day on matters related to TEC. The global south kept hammering away for stronger, more specific language in the communiqué, and defending their interventions on TEC soil in America on behalf of parishes seeking refuge from TEC.

The primates finally adjourned as midnight approached. Akinola was the last to sign the document.

“It was the most intense meeting I have ever attended,” Archbishop Henry Luke Orombi of Uganda said afterward. “Even until the last night of our meeting, we were in a deadlock. But, the Lord has prevailed. Biblical authority is being restored, and from that, we are hopeful that biblical mission will be the result.”

“We came very close to separation over this,” said the global south’s Archbishop Gregory Venables, primate of the Southern Cone in South America.

Separation indeed. In Akinola’s briefcase was a signed statement by global south primates, ready to be released as a minority report with the communiqué if it had not been strengthened, according to several sources. It also would have signaled a breakup of the communion, they added.

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Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

Nothing new or unexpected in the Living Church piece.

But it’s fun to see the source for the “KJS in tears” statements on various Venomonline blogs ;=)

George Conger does not actually say that, surprise, surprise…

Kathryn
Kathryn
14 years ago

Sarah Dylan Breuer at http://www.sarahlaughed.net/anglicana/2007/03/david_bena_leav.html notes the recent letter issued by the Nigerian House of Bishops at http://www.anglican-nig.org/hobmarch2007.htm which suggests that they and CANA are proceeding full steam ahead with continued intervention in U.S. dioceses regardless of what Canterbury or the U.S. House of Bishops has to say about the Primatial Council idea.

dmitri
dmitri
14 years ago

“Language that at one time spoke to the Church of England and the issue of civil partnerships was dropped as the primates adopted an American focus for the document.” (DIVIDE and CONQUER)

If TEC caves to these bullies they will then be free to turn their “focus” on the UK priests in partnerships. What is the CofE HOB going to do when given an ultimatum demanding repentance for tolerating their gay priests? It would be better for them to stand up now and support TEC.

Pluralist
14 years ago

[Regarding an absolute against bigotry; legal protection] Who is he trying to fool with this? [Andrew Brown] Perhaps he is trying to reconcile his own personal position and outlook with the actuality he is dealing with – in other words, it is a form of unpersuading statement made anyway whilst he is upholding a unity with those who practise bigotry and offer the opposite of legal protection. It is a thin connection between what he would persuade, write and act upon freely, and what he is actually doing and perhaps his own attempt at hanging on to personal integrity. Meanwhile… Read more »

drdanfee
drdanfee
14 years ago

The continuing press on the ground by realignment forces/groups like CANA seems to clearly point towards narrowing our Anglican spaces even further. If this is the true path for the communion to unquestioningly walk in the near impending future; what use is listening, because it never really is listening? The pat answers of the religious right are there ahead of us, awaiting any and all possible questions in presuppositional self-content, closed. This new, vigorous closedness is new to me as an essential Anglican element. The rest of us are still walking on, since we began to follow Jesus anew outside… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

… based upon Ancient near eastern Philosophy and late Modern translations into “application”.

Lapinbizarre
Lapinbizarre
14 years ago

If the pieces by Conger and Plowman are broadly accurate, and it appears that they are, it is clear that nothing will satisfy the Not-Particularly-Global South, short of total domination of TEC and the Anglican Communion. The timing of the appointment of the “new” CANA bishop shows a particularly fine sensitivity to the need for restraint and the preservation of “Windsor” principles at this difficult point. On reading these articles, one feels that the best possible outcome of the recent Tanzanian jamboree would have been to let Akinola’s signed statement out of the bag, sticking responsibility for the breaking of… Read more »

Cheryl Clough
14 years ago

The last minute disclosure of some information was noted at the time. There was the document that had been completed six months earlier but not released. There was also the references to Schori having dialogue with Spong. As a hidden arrow, I can see why they would copy this strategy. What they have forgotten is that I spent twelve months before the tsunami trying to use official channels to warn them something was coming. I then spent 18 months after the tsunami trying to communicate and appeal to the appropriate authorities. They can not say that they were not forwarned… Read more »

Leonardo Ricardo
Leonardo Ricardo
14 years ago

“Over several grueling sessions, marked at one point by tears and raised voices,” The Living Church Foundation

Good Lord, Global South grandstanding bigots aren’t even civilized and have I have lost the tinest hope they will “listen” to anything other than promise of greater self-importance while LISTENING only to the sound of their OWN hatefilled VOICES.

Richard Lyon
Richard Lyon
14 years ago

http://fromgloryintoglory.blogspot.com/2007/03/reflection-on-meeting-with-presiding.html This is a most interesting post from a leader of Integrity about a meeting he and Susan Russel had with the PB. If his analysis is correct, KJS has committed herself to supporting and selling the recommendations of the primates communique. That also jives with my impressions from watching her webcast. Her commitment would explain why Rowan Williams thinks that he can move ahead with their implementation before any sort of formal response from TEC. Will the majority in TEC be willing to pull the rug out from the PB? She managed to sell B033 against the popular will.… Read more »

Chris
Chris
14 years ago

Does TLC report actually cite who was crying and who raised their voice? Seems a bit of a reach to assume it was or wasn’t a certain primate.

“Boundaries within these blocs were also fairly fluid and differences in churchmanship led to disparate views on how to proceed.”

Telling statement indeed. Maybe the GS primates aren’t a monolithic bloc of backwards people from LDCs.

Colin Coward
14 years ago

“Akinola was the last to sign the document. In Akinola’s briefcase was a signed statement by global south primates, ready to be released as a minority report with the communiqué if it had not been strengthened. It also would have signaled a breakup of the communion.” “Illness prevented Archbishop Akinola from joining the primates’ Sunday excursion to Zanzibar. However, he was able to craft an addendum to the communiqué which he presented to the primates upon their return that evening.” Archbishop Akinola wasn’t the only person staying at the White Sands Hotel not to travel to the Communion service on… Read more »

Cheryl Clough
14 years ago

Colin Interesting points, but a public statement means nothing. It doesn’t matter when the document was written, that it was there pre-prepared and pre-signed says it all. Drdanfee You will be pleased to know that the “USA Bible Belt churches” are not so clear cut anymore. Similarly the walls of Red versus Blue states is also breaking down. There are those who recognise that there is common ground that is the interests of both red and blue, and there are common issues that are in neither’s interest. We saw an early ripple with the late 2006 US senate elections. More… Read more »

Charlotte
Charlotte
14 years ago

Colin Coward speculates that Martyn Minns, David Anderson, and Chris Sugden might have helped Archbishop Akinola with the “briefcase statement.” Hmmm. This has happened before. What other documents has Martyn Minns helped Akinola with? Well, there were a couple of statements issued after meetings of the Global South. One carried the signatures of persons who had neither reviewed or signed the document, and angrily disavowed it after it was issued. The other had no signatures at all, and was issued after the meeting was over. It purported to represent the position of all parties to the meeting, but did not,… Read more »

Mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
Mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
14 years ago

Hmm, so Peter Akinola becomes de facto leader and principal public face of the Anglican Communion in September, just about the same time as the first prosecutions and deaths under the new Nigerian legislation are hitting the headlines. Lots of photographs of him consorting with Mr Sugden, Mr Minns et al, who having said nowt against said legislation, taint irreparably their various pressure groups by association. ConsEvs are faced with unpalatable choices, lines of retreat having been cut off by well publicised statements and photo-opportunities on a par with George Galloway being photographed with Saddam. Did Mr Machiavelli write this… Read more »

Caliban
Caliban
14 years ago

Why is it that whenever I learn the sordid details of the way +Akinola and his allies treat +Cantuar, I am reminded of those memorable lines from Russell Hoban’s ‘Ridley Walker’:

“Sharna pax and get the poal
When the Ardship of Cambry comes out of the hoal.”

NP
NP
14 years ago

Come on Mynster – evos are not forced to choose between ++Akinola and TEC.

Given his recent work and statements, we are quite happy with the ABC as he defends Lambeth 1.10 as the “standard of teaching” in the CofE and AC. WE choose to stick to this traditional understanding /teaching and not TEC innovations. We do not choose Akinola….we choose the authority of Scripture.

I do not agree with the Nigerian legislation but I am not backing it by disagreeing with TEC’s innovations….not if we are logical and fair about things.

drdanfee
drdanfee
14 years ago

Hi Cheryl thanks for the link and comments. I think we are pretty much on the same or similar pages, here. I, too, dearly wish that Canterbury had simply repeated, over and over and over again: We are all Anglicans. Full Stop. Period. And let the indignant realignment campaign fur fly until it had either wearied or demonstrated its dominating intentions sufficiently to lose the interest of all non-domination-hungry believers (whom I suspect are still the majority of worldwide Anglicans?). But, alas, Lord have mercy, Canterbury could not speak up. So now the realignment campaign cats are indeed out of… Read more »

mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
14 years ago

With great respect, NP, it doesn’t matter two hoots whether evos choose the authority of Scripture or the authority of Abuja. When the midden hits the windmill, the people who matter – that is, the world, those among whom we’re supposed to spread the good news, will see photographs of ++Abuja next to the darlings of the reasserting movement. The association which will be made will not be one which COnsEvs wil find to their taste, I suspect. Those who sup with the devil must use a long spoon, and I think that in this case the spoon’s not long… Read more »

Douglas Lewis
Douglas Lewis
14 years ago

Whenever I think the comments at Stand Firm e.g. get a little strong, I come over and see how moderate they really are. For example, Mr Coward posits a conclave on the basis of nothing more than physical proximity and then says he would ‘welcome’ disavowal by the people he claims were involved. And it appears that none of the other posters have been shocked by this egregious disregard for the rules of fairness.

NP
NP
14 years ago

I see what you mean, Mynster – but I am sure you can see the same is true of association with the likes of VGR.

I was in the back of a London cab the other week…..and was distressed to hear the man’s view of the CofE as a place he would not send his children because of perceived immorality. “They are all…., mate.”

I put him straight but I think your point about association is right and cuts both ways.

Laurence Roberts
Laurence Roberts
14 years ago

Yes, I too find London cabbies excellent arbiters of moral values ! Seriously, they are a good lot round here, and my husband and I find them non-homophobic to us and genuinely supportive. Mind you we have known some of them for almost 20 years now. They have seen the comings and goings of an ordinary couple. NP perhaps you might have challenged or explored the implied homophobia of your cabbie ? The gayness of the anglo-catholic movement has been an open secrret for years — for those not looking the other way, or passing by on the other side… Read more »

mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
14 years ago

Looking at various articles/links posted in the last coupleof days, it looks like my prediction of a queue of COnsEvs trying to say ‘no-one told us about ++ABuja’s darker side’ is not too far from the truth. The wheels on the COnEv bus are starting to fall off, sabotaged not by nasty liberals but by the inconsistencies within the ConsEv agenda. Williams doesn’t need to beat ’em up, they’ll soon be doing it themselves.

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