Thinking Anglicans

American Exec Council on the Covenant draft

ENS reports Executive Council notes concern with covenant’s disciplinary section.

The Episcopal Church’s Executive Council said October 8 that the majority of the General Convention deputations and individual deputies that expressed an opinion do not support the disciplinary process outlined in the latest draft of a proposed Anglican covenant.

The comment came in the council’s official response to the Ridley Cambridge Draft, which the members said addresses “some of the most difficult matters and substance relating to such a covenant.”

The Anglican Communion’s provinces were asked for specific comments on the draft’s Section Four, which contains a dispute-resolution process…

The Executive Council said that the comments it received on Section Four were “so interwoven” with comments on the covenant as a whole that “separating the two is difficult.”

“The majority of deputations and individual deputies that responded are not convinced that the covenant in its current form will bring about deeper communion,” the council said. “Several stated that the overall idea of a covenant is ‘un-Anglican.’ One went as far as to say that the ‘document incorporates anxiety.’”

On the other hand, the council noted, another deputy called the covenant “a presentation of the Christian community as a dynamic spiritual body in which God-given freedom is inextricably bound up with God-given accountability.”

…The council also said that it was “grateful” for the opportunity given to provinces to consider the Ridley Cambridge Draft “in the hopes of realizing a fully matured Anglican covenant.” It also pledged that its ongoing participation in the covenant development process would be entrusted “to the leading of the Holy Spirit” and that it “look[s] forward to the next three years as we grow more deeply into our common life in the Anglican Communion.”

The actual text of the response, linked in the above report as a Word file, can be read in html here.

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“…Other persons queried whether “church’ means a parish, or an Anglican religious order, or a competing province in one geographic location can join. If a province in one geographic area chose not to sign the Covenant, could a new “province in that geographic area do so?” – TEC Executive Council – In its response to the latest Ridley Draft of the Covenant, TEC is obviously concerned whether, if it finds itself unable to sign up to the Covenant as eventually promulgated, the Enforcers of the Discipline proposed in Section 4 would accept an alternative ‘shadow province’ in the USA, such… Read more »