Thinking Anglicans

CANA/Nigeria claims to have divided the Communion

BabyBlue published a long article concerning the Virginia property trial,The Division of The Episcopal Church: First Post-Trial Briefs Filed Today.

Mark Harris distilled from that article the following: CANA argues for two Anglican entities, affirms schism. The key paragraph seems to be this one:

As a result of these recent changes, the Anglican Communion is now divided into two “branches”—those that relate to all provinces that relate to the See of Canterbury, and those that relate only to those who are understood as adhering to the historic faith, doctrine, and discipline of the Anglican Communion. See Sept. 14, 2007, Tr. 41 (directing the parties to address the branch issue at the Anglican Communion level). The Church of Nigeria, with which the CANA Congregations have affiliated, is the principal leader of this new branch. Tr. 363-64, 372-74 (Minns); Tr. 639-40 (Yisa). Indeed, TEC Presiding Bishop Schori herself referred to CANA as a distinct “part” or “branch of the Anglican Communion” repeatedly in her deposition. Schori Dep, Designations 54-56, 79, 83. The evidence at trial thus independently satisfied the “branch” requirement of § 57-9 at the Anglican Communion level.”

Update

bb helpfully comments that

The post-trial briefs from both parties are now up and can be downloaded from here: http://www.anglicandistrictofvirginia.org/resources/legal-resources

Scroll down that page for the full set of legal documents. For the post-trial briefs in PDF format:

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Robert Ian WilliamsGöran Koch-SwahnePaul DavisonCynthia GilliattLeonardo Ricardo Recent comment authors
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Pluralist
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I don’t quite understand the extent of Mark Harris’s point that two communions do not exist yet, and they would have to be set up. Presumably, the argument is around two branches at present, but all it takes for two communions is for one to run through the Primate of All Nigeria – which takes a simple declaration – and one that runs through the Primate of Canterbury. The Church of Nigeria did, of course, change its legal texts and it calls itself The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion). Those recently consecrated gave their obedience to the Primate of Nigeria.… Read more »

Ian Montgomery
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Ian Montgomery

What is interesting about Mark Harris’ piece is that he contrasts what is de jure and what is de facto. On the one hand de jure there is only one AC, but de facto there is AC1 and AC2 – it then becomes a matter of time to see if AC2 becomes de jure and then what is the response of Canterbury to that group. On the one hand his Advent letter disparages the “offshore” aspect of the de facto division. BUT on the other hand, he seems to recognise the de facto (or is it de jure now?) separation… Read more »

choirboyfromhell
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choirboyfromhell

What a lovely Christmas gift. So very sad, that something born out of hate would come on this day.

drdanfee
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drdanfee

Hmm, difficult to see is the schism in progress. (St. Yoda) The con evo realignment folks seem to want to have nothing much to do with the rest of us, for any number of sensationalized (and perhaps overblown?) reasons. Yet, even if they sort of get to go off alone, all on their own – we all will still be here, together on the planet. So I guess I still don’t quite get it, and that’s why the realignment makes small sense to me. It is not as if the realignment can completely exempt any of us – from maybe… Read more »

BabyBlue
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You can now read the entire post-trial filing from both parties. The post-trial briefs from both parties are now up and can be downloaded from here: http://www.anglicandistrictofvirginia.org/resources/legal-resources

bb

drdanfee
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drdanfee

Well, Merry Christmas to all, and Happy New Year 2008. As the Klingons say in bracing good cheer, It’s a good day to belong to the Anglican Communion – what a great blessing it really is, to have no Anglican Covenant beyond what we already have. No AC beyond the Quadritaleral, no leverage to use force instead of witness and persuasion and discernment and inquiry as the generations come and go. Being a pilgrim is a lovely gift, especially in this time of the church year.

Who needs a worldwide Anglican Police Power anyways?

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Is this Virginia law really intended for the makers of a division to profit from it?

or is it only meant to apply post ipso facto; when a division has been established?

ettu
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ettu

BB, am I really that interested in legal briefs? I suppose if I were the one being sued I would be but am grateful that I can instead lament the underlying act of separation and concentrate my energy and prayers on the horrible division itself. I am continually amazed what it says about our fallen nature.

EmilyH
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EmilyH

I posted the following as a response to two posters on Stand Firm, “Carl” and Baby Blue and their take on the brief put together by the ADVA attorneys, but it might work well on this thread too: On the statement above addressing not TEC but the Anglican Communion…. No Carl, it is not a statement of fact or simply expressing a reality, it is a legal argument open to challenge. That said, I agree with you, if one accepts the existence of the two “branches” as defined by the CANA attorneys, they are mutually exclusive. A national church can… Read more »

Cheryl Va. Clough
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Thanks BabyBlue, you’re doing some good stuff. Thanks also Pluralist, I hadn’t realized that those recently consecrated gave their obedience to the Primate of Nigeria. The formation of the Nigerian Global Communion has formally begun, the questions are now who will become part of their communion and how will that communion relate to Lambeth and Lambeth back to them. Knowing the staff of Lambeth, I am sure they will be courteous and polite, irregardless of the actualities of the formal relationship. Another question is who is going to be sending money to whom and with what conditions. The prayers part… Read more »

Leonardo Ricardo
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Leonardo Ricardo

Just like brutalizing Starfish…as CANA and Baby Blue keep ripping off arms and legs at The Body of Christ they seem to be unaware that the “limbs” will grow back.

Cynthia Gilliatt
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Cynthia Gilliatt

“Is this Virginia law really intended for the makers of a division to profit from it? or is it only meant to apply post ipso facto; when a division has been established?” My understanding is that the law was enacted after the American Civil War in order to deal with churches and denominations that had broken with each other during the war. For example, what we now call the American Baptist Church and the Southern Baptist Churce are products of that division. The law was enacted to help settle property disputes arising from such formal splits in non-hierarchical [is that… Read more »

Paul Davison
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Paul Davison

“Assuming that, because of the argument made above, CANA makes its case based on the Virginia statute, the constitutionality of the statute itself must be faced…”

Actually, the court must first find that the statute applies to the current situation before considering whether the statute is unconstitutional. (If it doesn’t apply, then there’s no need to think about unconstitutionality.)

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Actually, my question was a little more material than that… But I guess no one knows for sure (because they haven’t really asked ;=)

Robert Ian Williams
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Robert Ian Williams

The TEC lawyers should use the precedent of the refusal of the Anglican Communion to invite the Church of England in South Africa and the Reformed Episcopal Church to Lambeth.

CESA orders are recognised but not their presence at Lambeth. Thus it is possible to have the Anglican episcopal succession , Like Minns and not be Anglican.