Thinking Anglicans

Lambeth Conference 2022 – Call on Human Dignity

The bishops at the Lambeth Conference discussed the  Call on Human Dignity in private yesterday, but there are some reports.

Lambeth Conference website
Bishops at Lambeth Conference discuss the Lambeth Call on Human Dignity

Archbishop of Canterbury
Bishops at Lambeth Conference discuss Lambeth Call on Human Dignity
Lambeth Call on Human Dignity: Read Archbishop Justin’s remarks

Church Times
Lambeth 2022: Fire goes out of sexuality argument

TransEpiscopal
Hope for the Race Before Us: A Reflection on the Lambeth Human Dignity Call

Episcopal News Service
Archbishop of Canterbury’s remarks on human dignity lift up traditional and progressive marriage beliefs
Message from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry on Lambeth Call on human dignity

The Living Church
Sexuality Dispute Ends with Call to Truth and Unity

The Telegraph
Justin Welby: I won’t punish churches that conduct gay marriages

The Guardian
Justin Welby ‘affirms validity’ of 1998 gay sex is sin declaration

This Statement from Anglican Bishops and Primates who are keen to affirm and celebrate LGBT+ People was issued yesterday.

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Adrian
Adrian
7 days ago

Very interesting that one (well known independently minded) English Bishop signed the affirming statement. Invidious to identify individuals but I’m sure most TA readers will be surprised by certain absences. One wonders which bits of the short statement all other 120 + English Bishops felt unable to support? Of course an alternative explanation could be that they were all leaned on by Lambeth and meekly abandoned independent thought? Surely not.

Simon Sarmiento
Reply to  Adrian
7 days ago

In fact two Church of England bishops signed.

Adrian
Adrian
Reply to  Simon Sarmiento
7 days ago

perhaps I was not specific enough in an attempt to be concise: do you prefer of the 42 Diocesans, 73 suffragans and one bishop to the Archbishops, one signed?

Simon Sarmiento
Reply to  Adrian
7 days ago

Two suffragans signed….

peterpi - Peter Gross
peterpi - Peter Gross
Reply to  Simon Sarmiento
7 days ago

So Adrian got the count of signing English bishops wrong.

That still leaves apparently, 42 diocesan and 71 suffragan bishops and one bishop to the archbishops who did NOT sign.

Last edited 7 days ago by peterpi - Peter Gross
Susannah Clark
Reply to  peterpi - Peter Gross
7 days ago

This affirming statement, as I understand it, was not part of the formal Lambeth process. There may well have been some correspondence advising against participating… a point being that, in the middle of the LLF process, should English bishops not be seen as ‘impartial’ and non-partisan, until such time as decisions actually have to be taken. If they signed this statement, I imagine that socially conservative members of the Church of England would see that as them already having their minds made up, and therefore ‘not listening’, and the bishops might be seen as acting in ‘bad faith’ in the… Read more »

peterpi - Peter Gross
peterpi - Peter Gross
Reply to  Susannah Clark
6 days ago

Thank you for your reply, and especially, your last paragraph.
Many years ago, I was part of a leadership training course. Every week, the facilitator would remind the participants of the ground rules we all agreed to, one of which was “assume positive intent of the speaker”. It’s advice I try to follow even now, but there are times I struggle to do so.

Adrian
Adrian
7 days ago

Also interesting that ‘ourCofElike’ Twitter feed reports from the conference as follows: we presented our bishops with chasubles and the wives with Canterbury Cross Necklaces’. As a ‘Clergy husband’, I’m not sure which explanation is the least insulting:

  1. Bishop’s husbands got nothing
  2. we can’t be bothered to tell you what Bishop’s husbands got
  3. we don’t accept that a Bishop can have a husband.

Answers on a postcard?

Fr. Paul D Dean
Fr. Paul D Dean
7 days ago

The C of E Bishops seem to be running scared, most disappointing. However I as many, will be grateful to Bishop Alan and Bishop David (my bishop) The Lambeth Conference could and should have been so much better then this. I am not so sure that this particular Instrument of Communion has any further value for the future.

Dr John Wallace
Dr John Wallace
Reply to  Fr. Paul D Dean
7 days ago

It will be so sad when +Alan retires (he is 67). We will lose a challenging and outspoken episcopal voice. Doubtless + Oxford will replace him with someone more grey and compliant

Fr Dean
Fr Dean
Reply to  Fr. Paul D Dean
6 days ago

Fr Paul the system now ensures that only the most milquetoast candidates get through to the episcopacy. We know that there are LGBTQ English bishops and even they have not signed.

Jeremy
Jeremy
7 days ago

I guess I’m like the “genuinely nonplussed” reporter from the Catholic Youth Agency of Germany.
Was the Call on Human Dignity adopted by Lambeth Conference 2022? Or not?
Or will there be further proceedings on it at some point over the next few days?

Jeremy
Jeremy
7 days ago

Corrections for The Guardian: The first sentence is wrong. There is no such thing as “the global Anglican church.” Of course the article then goes on to say, as it must, that there are actually various “churches” in various places that disagree with each other. So the article is quite unclear as to ecclesiology. Michael Curry is primate of the Episcopal Church, not “the US episcopal church.” The Episcopal Church that he leads is mostly in the US, but is present in many other countries as well. And if The Guardian upper-cases “Church of England,” then the Guardian ought to… Read more »

Kieran
Kieran
Reply to  Jeremy
7 days ago

And the definite article should be capitalised since it is the formal name of the church in which Dr Curry is Presiding Bishop. Terminological exactitude is not famously part of the Grauniad’s stock-in-trade…

Simon Kershaw
Reply to  Jeremy
6 days ago

On the question of how to style the US-based Episcopal Church, I think the Guardian is right to add a qualifier. In at least some parts of the UK it is not unreasonable to consider an unqualified reference to “the Episcopal Church” to be a reference to the Scottish Episcopal Church. Some indication is required that this is not the case but that the Church formerly called [P]ECUSA is meant. To reverse the situation, there is a London-based newspaper called “The Times”. In US (and maybe other non-UK) contexts it is frequently called “the London Times” so that the reference… Read more »

Jeremy
Jeremy
Reply to  Simon Kershaw
6 days ago

Understood — and this topic has been discussed here previously.
But “US Episcopal Church” is not the right way to do it. That makes it sound like a national or (US) federal entity, which it isn’t.
Disabbreviate, and “United States Episcopal Church” is obviously wrong–among other errors, it incorrectly implies establishment!

Jeremy
Jeremy
7 days ago

And the Telegraph’s article is much more clear than the Guardian’s.
Plus it includes the money quote from Jayne Ozanne:
“Jayne Ozanne, a prominent LGBT+ campaigner within the Church of England accused The Most Rev Welby of trying to “ride two horses at once”.
“She said: “It would be funny if one of the horses wasn’t trying to trample LGBT+ people underfoot.””

Susannah Clark
Reply to  Jeremy
7 days ago

To be fair on Justin Welby (and I have quite often criticised him) I think Jayne’s remark could be ‘visualised’ another way, and I believe Justin has almost driven this issue as best as he could (I’m not talking about the shambles of the process). The way I look at it, yes there were two horses pulling the Communion chariot, each horse wanting to go a different way. But the problem was, they were riding a knife-edge ridge, with sheer cliffs on either side, and had Justin not ridden both horses, then one or other of them would have driven… Read more »

Susannah Clark
Reply to  Susannah Clark
6 days ago

He was trying to hold things together, which is why he was ‘riding two horses’. In essence, what he’s said at the Conference is: ‘There ARE two horses… fact.’

And what he seems to be trying to advocate, is that ‘riding two horses together’… pulling the one chariot… is exactly what the Communion should be doing.

Pluralism.

I agree with him.

Whether he can succeed in that, with the Communion, is another matter.

But I believe what he advocates could be successfully applied to the Church of England.

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
Reply to  Jeremy
6 days ago

If we are being pedantic (or rather advocating precision) about how TEC should be correctly described, the Telegraph is equally amiss with “The Most Rev Welby”. There are options for describing the Archbishop in a news item context, but choosing this form is always incorrect if the Christian name is omitted (equally true for other Reverend ranks of the clergy). So for Telegraph purposes they could have written “The Most Rev Justin Welby” (strictly Revd rather than ‘Rev’, but we will allow some latitude). ‘Justin Welby’ or ‘Archbishop Welby’ would be acceptable journalism.

Rod Gillis
Rod Gillis
7 days ago

Some of the subjects being considered at Lambeth would really require expertise beyond that of most of the bishops. Does anyone know who are the theological advisors to the bishops at Lambeth, the staff theologians? Is there the equivalent of the ‘peritus’ used by the R.C. bishops at Vatican II and other episcopal gatherings?

Simon Sarmiento
Reply to  Rod Gillis
7 days ago

Are you concerned about *theological* advisers, or about experts in other fields such as science or medicine? Or could you perhaps be suggesting that Anglican bishops don’t know what it is that they don’t know?

Rod Gillis
Rod Gillis
Reply to  Simon Sarmiento
7 days ago

Fun fact: Did you know that Bernard Lonergan, in his essay Insight (1), coined the concept of ‘known knowns v. known unknowns’ long before Donald Rumsfeld infamously popularized it? My question is whether or not Bishops and those developing various ‘calls’ have advice from theological experts. For example, who is advising them on NT studies, or philosophical theology? Advice from experts in other fields such as medicine and science would be a bonus, and perhaps too much to hope for. (1) “…our analysis forces us to recognize the paradoxical category of the ‘known unknown’. … our questions out number our… Read more »

John Scrivener
John Scrivener
Reply to  Rod Gillis
6 days ago

I thought Rumsfeld’s main point concerned ‘unknown unknowns’ – ‘the things we don’t know we don’t know’. Does Lonergan cover that? (I have a copy of Insight on my shelf, but have yet to read it, daunted by its length!)

Rod Gillis
Rod Gillis
Reply to  John Scrivener
6 days ago

The exact quote from Rumsfeld is below along with a link to it’s source. Note the rather dry Q & A which flows from it. I was riffing on Simon Sarmiento’s question which I took to be somewhat rhetorical. You might start where Lonergan starts in Insight, with the example of Archimedes (Chapter I: Elements I.A : A dramatic Instance.) Insight is not just lengthy. It is extremely difficult. His thinking evolved as well. His later and more popular book, Method in Theology, is somewhat more accessible. My first reading of insight was after reading Method. I’d recommend one of… Read more »

John Scrivener
John Scrivener
Reply to  Rod Gillis
5 days ago

Thank you very much for this – I shall look out McShane’s collection.

Simon Dawson
Simon Dawson
7 days ago

“For the large majority of the Anglican Communion the traditional understanding of marriage is something that is understood, accepted and without question, not only by Bishops but their entire Church, and the societies in which they live. For them, to question this teaching is unthinkable,”

Did Justin Welby actually say this yesterday? That it is “unthinkable” for anybody to question the traditional understanding of marriage in such churches where bishops promote a traditional view.

Where does that place the Christian LGBTQ+ campaigners in Nigeria, Uganda and elsewhere?

peterpi - Peter Gross
peterpi - Peter Gross
Reply to  Simon Dawson
7 days ago

Someone commented the other day, about the Lambeth 2022 process, that (and I’m paraphrasing) the decennial meeting of the Communist Chinese party will now come to order. The more I read about Lambeth, the more I concur. “the traditional understanding of marriage is something that is understood, accepted and without question, not only by Bishops but their entire Church, ” Does Archbishop Welby not know, or understand, that dissent, or opposition to laws allowing only heterosexual marriage, or engaging in same-sex marriage in certain African countries is against the law, and is contraindicated if a person is concerned about their health,… Read more »

Jim Pratt
Jim Pratt
Reply to  peterpi - Peter Gross
6 days ago

A few years ago, I had a priest from the Province of Central Africa worshiping in my parish. We had just completed our parish discernment and decided to marry same-sex couples, and we had a summary of the diocesan guidelines and parish decision on our notice board. I was a bit cautious when he said he wanted to talk to me about it. But he was very glad to see it, as he has a gay brother, and said that even discussing the issue would not have been allowed in the church at home.

Simon Dawson
Simon Dawson
Reply to  Jim Pratt
6 days ago

There are many who can tell similar stories. Many years ago I was providing support to a young gay asylum seeker in London. He came from Uganda. It was the local Anglican priest in his village who realised that he had been found out, and that his life was in danger, and who started him off on a journey to safety that ended in England. This is what makes Justin Welby’s words so unacceptable. It denies the existence of so many Pro LGBTQ African Christians, and many others who may not be strongly Pro LGBTQ but who have a basic… Read more »

Jonathan Britt
Jonathan Britt
Reply to  Simon Dawson
7 days ago

I was saddened to see that not one bishop from the Episcopal Church in the Philippines signed this statement. Although ‘same sex marriage’ is not allowed in law in the Philippines, nevertheless there are many LGBTQ+ people there, some in the church in pastoral positions. Perhaps it was just jet lag and the time difference that has meant they haven’t got o signing yet?

Father Ron Smith
7 days ago

I wonder: How many of the Bishops at Lambeth will be signing up to the Global South Statement, confirming their obdurate opposition to Same Sex Blessing and Marriage?

If they get lots of signatures (with the required stats of how many Anglicans live in their individual provinces) it may be that the G.S. will claim a greater percentage of Anglicans around the world agree with their anti-gay agenda; thus setting the ground for a spurious takeover bid for the ‘soul’ of the Communion.

I pray that common sense will prevail over inherited prejudice.

Adrian
Adrian
6 days ago

Interesting to note that it appears to have taken Sandi Toksvig about 4 minutes to get an audience with Justin Welby whereas it took the 30 (approx) U.K. John Smyth victims over 4 years and the 100 (approx) African victims are still, shamefully, waiting. These include the family of 1 teenage boy who died and others who attempted suicide. Meanwhile no action against all those clergy who knew about Smyth and walked by on the other side, or even helped recruit others into his cult and NST/Lambeth Palace have breached victims’ confidentiality on multiple occasions, again without any sanction or… Read more »

Marise Hargreaves
Marise Hargreaves
Reply to  Adrian
5 days ago

I concur Adrian. The difference is one gets a cheap headline and the rest are not celebrity and don’t count. Also no action on those whose gossip and malevolence have cost a life recently in London. It is beyond disgusting and demonstrates how low you can go while pretending you are concerned and dealing with things. No doubt there will be more pretence from the tea party for the benefit of the press. It just about sums it up- fake – meanwhile real people, with real lives, suffer.

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