Thinking Anglicans

more writing about the covenant

Updated again Thursday evening

Not content with their recent magnum opus the Anglican Communion Institute has published another (shorter) essay, titled Communion Partner Dioceses and The Anglican Covenant.

We address below issues related to the capacity of CP dioceses to sign the Anglican Covenant. We consider the text of Section 4 of the Ridley Cambridge draft, ACC Resolution 14.11, the unique polity of TEC and the ACC constitution and membership schedule. Although the final wording of Section 4 has not yet been agreed, the principles discussed below, particularly the constitutional integrity of member churches, are fundamental to Anglicanism and not in dispute…

Pluralist has already responded.

Updates Mark Harris has now also responded with Why bother, #1

Why bother with the in house realignment crowd (the Communion Partners Bishops, the Anglican Communion Institute, the Covenant-Communion writers.) The logic chopping is so bad in some of their essays that the noise of it turns the brain to Wheatena.

Here is example #1…

And later, with Why bother, #2

The Covenant-Communion article, subject of my first “Why bother?” post, was published just the day after the seven bishops who visited with the Archbishop of Canterbury published their report.

The “realignment-from-within” Bishops, the RFW Bishops aka the Communion Bishops, have produced a somewhat odd report, as if jet lag had not yet left them able to work at full speed…

Mark Harris has also written The Anglican Covenant: A tempting but wormy apple.

The notion of an Anglican Covenant is as tempting for some as the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The promise is that the Anglican Covenant would make it clear to ourselves and to all the world just who we were and what we stood for and how we would comport ourselves as a Christian fellowship. Many Anglicans can just taste it! A sense of self esteem when we are compared to other world wide churches and a sense of religious order when we look at our own community. The Anglican Covenant would make us one of, you know, THEM, world wide Churches that have real apostolic heft, with bishops and all.

The Anglican Covenant promised a lot, but preliminary taste tests seem to indicate that the fruit is wormy. The apple, it seems, is a bit rotten in places…

Further criticism of the earlier ACI document comes from Tobias Haller who has written The Heterosectual Communion.

The soi-disant Anglican Communion Institute has a knack for inverting the old Latin tag, “the mountains labored and bore a mouse.” In this case the gang of three, augmented by an attorney and a bishop, have given birth to a mountain of verbiage which in the long run, fundamentally flawed as it is, amounts to less than a mole-hill…

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Father Ron Smith
14 years ago

“…in TEC the dioceses are the national church in a way similar to that in which the member churches are the Anglican Communion. This feature of TEC’s polity was articulated fully by fifteen CP bishops and three theologians of ACI last April in their “Bishops’ Statement om the Polity of the Episcopal Church” (para.7, ACI Statement) The problem with giving yourself the honorific title of ‘Anglican Communion Institute’ is that no-one in the Anglican Communion may recognise or accept your authority to speak on behalf of the real Anglican Communion. Another problem is when you accord to just 15 conservative… Read more »

Cheryl Va.
14 years ago

The only reason they want a covenant is because they can’t keep touting Lambeth 1:10 (or whatever it was). There was a time that “the communion” signed up to a document that all were meant to abide by. The fact that the Lambeth that decided Lambeth 1.10 excluded the US church members was white-washed over. Loved Pluralist’s piece. On the justifications of exclusion: solo scriputuralists would do well to go back and read Old Testament. Where Jesus refused tests because one should not test the Lord (Matthew 4:7 or Luke 4:12). The God of the Old Testament calls on us… Read more »

Viriato da Silva
Viriato da Silva
14 years ago

“The fact that the Lambeth that decided Lambeth 1.10 excluded the US church members was white-washed over.” This is factually false. TEC was present and voting at that Lambeth. Lambeth 1:10 of 1998 was sheer folly, and certainly does not have the authority of being the “teaching of the Communion” or the “mind of the Communion,” but let’s get our facts correct. “If Jesus wants to prove he is the God of all Creation, then his Christian theology needs to accommodate all elements of God’s Creation.” I’m a pretty progressive sort theologically, but what manner of theology is this? Jesus… Read more »

14 years ago

Bravo and thanks to Pluralist, Mark Harris, and Tobias H. They pretty much cover the ground among them. I’m struck again by TGHs benign view of what is actually going on, or going to go on, via this covenant. I do hope he is accurate in predicting the weather in question; but I still have nagging doubts. So far as the ACI preachments go, however, the doubts are fading like mist in bright sunshine. They really are an odd bunch of spin doctors. And, having to read through their spin is less and less worth the effort. Last gasp, think… Read more »

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