on Wednesday, 20 June 2007 at 12.00 pm by Simon Sarmiento
categorised as General Synod
Annex 3 of GS 1661, the paper by Dr Martin Davie, is now available here.
_We have experience of making covenants with our ecumenical partners; why should there not be appropriate commitments which we can freely and honestly make with one another._ November 2004, Archbishop of Canterbury
I’ve seen the paper before but this within it struck me. The point is that these other Churches, with which a covenant is made, are different, and the difference is recognised and incorporated, but I doubt that this Covenant would recognise difference, describe it properly and regard it as legitimate.
A covenant which is made voluntarily between equal partners to commit themselves to joint action and greater communion is to be welcomed.
But (a) Anglicans are already a single entity; (b) the Draft Covenant envisages a new legal constitution for Anglicanism and should be named and debated as such; (c) it does not propose voluntary co-operation but central direction and control; (d) it is not widely owned and welcomed but an ecclesiastical coup d’état.
Free and honest agreements, by contrast, are to be welcomed.
Martin Davie summarises thus: “We cannot simply continue as we are. We do need to find some way of dealing with the ecclesiological deficit within Anglicanism in order to prevent the sort of crisis facing Anglicanism at the moment continuing to recur in the future. Neither pretending that there is not really a crisis nor simply seeking to return to the status quo before the present crisis erupted are viable options. The development of a mutually agreed covenant provides us with a potentially creative way forward and therefore, if possible, this is the route that the Anglican Communion needs to… Read more »
(Cont.) A few years ago I met PB Venables on a visit to Wales. He told me that at Primates Group they did not have a common language of respect to discus the presenting issue and that Rowan was therefore not willing to have it discussed. Creating fresh boundaries within which respectful discussion can take place is a successful device – but I am not alone in thinking that filling an “ecclesiological deficit” with this “Covenant” will provide the sort of boundaries likely to engender respect or help find a “common language”. Lesbian and gay Anglicans should especially be willing… Read more »