Thinking Anglicans

Covenant – Andrew Goddard writes again

Andrew Goddard has written more about the Anglican Covenant at Fulcrum.

How and Why IC & MCU Mislead Us on the Anglican Covenant

In the church press on Friday 29th October, two Church of England groups, Inclusive Church (IC) and Modern Church (formerly, Modern Churchpeople’s Union, MCU), published a whole page advert headed ‘Who runs the Church?’. This explains why they believe the Anglican Covenant would be a change for the worse. Having offered an initial short critique of it, this offers a more detailed analysis of its claims. In the week leading to the Synod debate on the covenant and subsequent diocesan discussion, their seriously flawed case risks being given greater circulation and credibility through the wider international (though predominantly Western liberal) No Anglican Covenant Coalition and other publicity such as the recent similar leaflet sent to General Synod members.

The key questions that need to be answered in relation to the covenant are as follows and each section is hyperlinked here so it can be read on its own

(1) Where does the Anglican Covenant come from, who wants it and why?
(2) What does the Anglican Covenant actually do?
(3) What will happen if the Church of England signs the Anglican Covenant?
(4) But isn’t the covenant disciplinary?
(5) What if…?: Hypothetical futures and pasts
(6) Conclusion: What vision and future for Anglicanism should we embrace?

Read the original to get the links.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
20 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
MarkBrunson
9 years ago

A predictably mealy-mouthed and profoundly-flawed defense from Goddard based on what he reads as the purpose of the “covenant.” What it all boils down to – in very many words – is “Well, really, when *I* look at it, the covenant *might* not do anything at all.” Not needed, then. Get rid of it. There is the typically political defense of “It doesn’t *explicitly* say that!” That’s the unkindest cut of all, as it – once again – presumes that we are so stupid we have no idea who wanted this and what was intended from the start with it.… Read more »

Pat O'Neill
Pat O'Neill
9 years ago

Goddard is incredibly disingenuous. Anyone who has followed the history of the Windsor Report, the various Lambeth and primates meetings, the cross-province interferences, etc. knows precisely who is sponsoring the covenant, what it is intended to do and why.

As we say on this side of the pond, if you put lipstick on a pig, it’s still a pig.

Susannah Clark
Susannah Clark
9 years ago

A very lengthy document which basically glosses over the disciplinary and control element in the project. The covenant attempts to set in formal structure the means to define which traditions within Anglicanism are acceptable and which are not. And the danger and expectation in this, is that the covenant becomes an instrument for conservative anglicans to repudiate, marginalise, and isolate liberal anglicans. This dismissive outlook can be seen in the comments here which portray liberal christianity as a failed paradigm and a sell out to secularism… rather than as a legitimate, thoughtful and arguably progressive work of the Spirit within… Read more »

Priscilla Cardinale
Priscilla Cardinale
9 years ago

I can summarize the article for you. Yes, I read it. Here you go:

Our (liberal) opponents lie! Opponents (liberals) are dumb! Opponents (liberals) can’t read! Obfuscate, confuse, bury with misleading rhetoric. LIBERALS = EVIL FOOLS! If we can pull this one off, we can truly get our way despite being a very small, angry minority who like to claim majority status. We shall overcome all things liberal because we don’t like them!

Hope that helps.

Charlotte
Charlotte
9 years ago

Interesting to watch Andrew Goddard begin to give truthful answers to my questions about the Covenant. 1) Yes, says Goddard, the Covenant is intended to be disciplinary. 2) Goddard claims: “The covenant itself does not – despite IC/MCU’s repeated assertions – redefine the Anglican Communion to exclude the Americans.” Why? because, says Goddard, the Americans will probably not sign it and thus will exclude themselves. That’s a bit of verbal trickery well worth observing. 3) The Covenant will not hinder mission because, says Goddard, conservative evo/charismatic movements and churches are growing, and young people join them. He fails to mention… Read more »

Richard Ashby
Richard Ashby
9 years ago

‘If anyone seriously believes that the covenant has been kept quiet then they have obviously had no interest in the life of the Communion over the last six years. If they want to understand what is being proposed and to contribute intelligently to the discussion in the Church of England then they will need to pay much more attention’. The unpleasant arrogance of this remark is breathtaking. Those who are steeped in the politics of the Church of England may well be familiar with the Covenant, but these people are not the man or woman in the pew, let alone… Read more »

Laurence Roberts
Laurence Roberts
9 years ago

I don’t think I want to engage over much with a piece of writing which uses the word falsehood and similar ones, over and over; while accusing MCU and IC of bad faith, pure and simple.

Would the so-called ‘Covenant’ protect us from this kind of stuff ?

Laurence Roberts
Laurence Roberts
9 years ago

Archbishop Drexel Gomez, Chair on the Design Group for the Anglican Communion ‘Covenant’ (sic) is on record as having said:

‘THE PUNITIVE ANGLICAN COVENANT: Various Provinces will be forced out of the Anglican Family because ¨what you are doing is an offense to the integrity of the family¨ +Drexel Gomez’.

This is the kind of background to it. And its thrust and creative genius springs from a deeply and virulently anti-gay impulse.

Pluralist
9 years ago

Long winded articles achieve less – a basic lesson for students. If you believe in Churches that have discipline, then it is for those Churches; there is no central Anglican Church where some discipline can be delivered. The Covenant is an innovation in this respect, in producing relational consequences or ways to create in and out groups. As for ordaining women, Andrew Goddard takes a snapshot now, but if they were starting out ordaining women think about the deeply felt cultural objections around the world and how these would have slowed action to zero any national Church decisions on pain… Read more »

Commentator
Commentator
9 years ago

Has Fr Andrew Goddard had time to read the article in the Church of England Newspaper by Canon Sugden? I think he should make time and then the light might dawn for him on points 1, 2, and 3. Then there could be other conclusions he would arrive at.

Cynthia Gilliatt
Cynthia Gilliatt
9 years ago

Lipstick on a pig redux.

JCF
JCF
9 years ago

“…and if NEITHER the facts nor the law are on your side, pound the table!” (Andrew Goddard re-enacts the ol’ lawyers’ saying)

Simon Sarmiento
9 years ago

I’ll link to both items in a new article later today, but just for convenience now:

1. The article referred to by Commentator, is i assume this one
http://www.anglican-mainstream.net/2010/11/18/truth-or-conviction-questions-over-the-anglican-communion-covenant/

2. The source of the quote from (now retired) Archbishop Gomez is I believe this one
http://www.americananglican.org/archbishop-gomez-need-for-covenant-grows-more-urgent

Martin Reynolds
Martin Reynolds
9 years ago

Mighty strange! What struck me most was Goddard’s rather unpleasant tone, clearly others here felt the same. It is strange to find myself on the conservative – no change – side of this debate! Even stranger to be making common cause with the likes of Chris Sugden, but there you are. My position in all of this is that structural changes will not solve our present problems, the thinking behind the Lambeth Commission was flawed and all that has followed has been to our detriment making the problem worse rather than better. I am not presently an advocate for an… Read more »

cseitz
cseitz
9 years ago

What a sad note. So much for the encouragement to stay with the subject matter and not with personal comment. I had hoped TA would indeed be ‘thinking.’ It isn’t.

Charlotte
Charlotte
9 years ago

I note again that the Rev. Dr. Seitz has not answered my question. So here it is again: Is the discernment process of the Covenant open to a discernment that faithful Anglicans are not of one mind regarding the ordination of partnered gay and lesbian persons? Or would the Covenant shut down the discernment process if this discernment began to emerge from it?

Susannah Clark
Susannah Clark
9 years ago

Dr Seitz, my comments were not personal, and I was trying to address the issues with courtesy and consideration. God bless you, and be with you.

Susannah

cseitz
cseitz
9 years ago

Susannah — and you did. Thank you.

Charlotte
Charlotte
9 years ago

And still no answer to my question from the Reverend Dr. Seitz!

cseitz
cseitz
9 years ago

Hello Charlotte, I did not know I was a guest respondent to individual questions! I am also not a spokesman for the covenant, in any formal sense. I’d conclude however that the answer to your second question is No. The covenant is a modus vivendi for conciliarism. Should the member signatories by what you call ‘discernment’ determine that sexual activity outside the bonds of marriage can find God’s blessing, then that would be a matter for the provinces to address through the patterns called for by the covenant. The covenant is not a ‘confessional document’ so far as church history… Read more »

20
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x