Author Topic: Anglicans to split?  (Read 82777 times)

Caissa

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Anglicans to split?
« Reply #30 on: February 15, 2007, 03:02:30 PM »
Anglican Journal News: Primates meeting begins with all at the table
Canadian leader bemoans focus on sexuality rather than poverty
Feb 15, 2007

Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada,
has
lamented that while he and other primates currently meeting in Tanzania
have
seen stark images of poverty in the capital Dar Es Salaam their
discussions
will not focus on improving the lives of the poor but on divisions over
human sexuality.

"I am going to a meeting with a gospel of hope and a preferential option
for
the poor and we are debating who is in and whom we are going to keep
out,"
said Archbishop Hutchison in a blog, or Internet diary entry, to young
Canadian Anglicans at http://www.generation.anglican.ca

Anglican leaders of the worldwide Anglican Communion convened on Feb. 15
for
a five-day meeting that would have at the top of its agenda, the issue
of
whether the Episcopal Church in the U.S. has "adequately responded" to
the
Windsor Report and what the future of the grouping of 38 provinces
consisting of 77 million members would be.

(The Windsor Report was published by the Lambeth Commission, a drafting
group created by the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams to seek ways
of
preventing a schism in the Communion triggered by the election in the
U.S.
of Gene Robinson, a gay bishop from the diocese of New Hampshire. The
2004
report asked the Episcopal Church and the Canadian diocese of New
Westminster to apologize for the "deep offence" that their decisions
regarding sexuality have caused to "many faithful Anglicans." It also
sought
a moratorium on same-sex blessings and the consecration of gay bishops.
The
Episcopal Church has not consecrated another gay bishop, but last year
its
General Convention adopted a non-binding resolution that did not
indicate
that it would refrain from doing so in the future. The Anglican Church
of
Canada is expected to make its response to the Windsor Report during its
General Synod scheduled in June.)

Some primates of the so-called Global South had earlier threatened not
to
sit at the same table with the new U.S. Presiding Bishop (primate)
Katharine
Jefferts Schori, because of her support for Bishop Robinson's election.
But
according to a report by the Episcopal News Service, the meeting began
Thursday "with every indication that all participants are present at the
table."

Upon arriving in Tanzania, Bishop Jefferts Schori, who is one of 13 new
primates attending the meeting for the first time, said she was looking
forward to "the opportunity to meet new colleagues and build upon
existing
relationships for common mission."

Upon his arrival in Tanzania on Feb. 14, Archbishop Williams defended
Bishop
Jefferts Schori's presence at the meeting. "Her presence is absolute.
There's no question about her presence and that's what actually the
archbishop said," Canon Jim Rosenthal, communications director of the
Anglican Communion Office, told reporters. "She's here because she's the
elected primate of the American church and there's no expectation she's
not
going to be here for the rest of the time."

Canon Rosenthal also acknowledged that the primates' meeting would be a
"difficult" one. "The basic issue here is what to do about those who
decided
they don't want to stay in the main Anglican body."

Archbishop Hutchison, meanwhile, wrote in his blog that he has been
praying
"that we can truly listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying to the
church."
He said: "I believe in an inclusive church that has its doors open to
all
and that accepts and welcomes people regardless of the human definitions
that we may place upon them ­ male/female, white/black, gay/straight ?
We
run the danger of making the church a club for like-minded people rather
than a place of refuge for the sinner and hope for the hurt and
vulnerable."

Archbishop Hutchison said his realization that the church was becoming
out
of sync with the realities of the world occurred to him during the drive
to
the conference centre, a beachfront hotel located an hour away from the
Dar
es Salaam airport.

"Despite being tired my eyes were wide open as we drove over dusty
unkempt
roads and through a sea of thousands upon thousands of people. Most were
standing beside the road looking desperate and without hope," he wrote.
"Adults and children intermingled and behind them were some of the most
dilapidated shacks that I had ever seen. For many these are the only
houses
they will ever know."

Archbishop Hutchison's lament echoes one by Archbishop Robin Eames, the
newly-retired primate of the Church of Ireland, who also led the Lambeth
Commission.

Interviewed by The Tablet, a Roman Catholic magazine, Archbishop Eames
expressed disappointment at the way leaders of various factions in the
Anglican Communion have behaved towards each other. "I have an image of
a
matchstick child starving in Africa and here are these robed figures
going
past arguing, and they don't see the child looking for a bite to eat."

Meanwhile, more than 900 clergy and laity from the Episcopal Church have
signed an open letter addressed to Archbishop of Canterbury asking him
to
reject requests made by eight American dioceses for alternative
primatial
oversight, saying it "would pose a grave danger to the Anglican
Communion."
(Media reports from Dar Es Salaam said conservative primates led by
Archbishop Peter Akinola of the Church of Nigeria are poised to
recommend
that another moderator equal to Bishop Jefferts Schori's status be
appointed
in the U.S. to minister to more conservative Episcopalians.)

Such a request is "unprecedented," the letter said, adding, "An
important
aspect of our Anglican identity is our comprehensiveness as a reformed
and
catholic church in which unity is expressed in common prayer rather than
adherence to a formal confession of faith other than the Creeds." Those
seeking alternative primatial oversight "are in effect asking to walk
away
from the messiness and ambiguity of our current disputes about gays and
lesbians in the church. In so doing, they give to these questions a
doctrinal weight not in keeping with historic Anglican understandings."

Granting the request "would open the door for others, here and elsewhere
in
the Anglican Communion, to reject pastoral and sacramental leadership on
the
basis of non-essential matters" and would further "lead to fragmentation
of
the Anglican Communion rather than deeper unity in Christ," the letter
added.

Boom Boom

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Anglicans to split?
« Reply #31 on: February 15, 2007, 03:06:00 PM »
"There has been no talk of schism in the meeting at all," he said.

http://www.episcopalchurch.org/3577_82501_ENG_HTM.htm

Caissa

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« Reply #32 on: February 15, 2007, 03:16:05 PM »
The discussion of schism has all been in the back rooms. :D

Boom Boom

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« Reply #33 on: February 15, 2007, 04:13:12 PM »
It's a 'back room boys' thing.

Holly Stick

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« Reply #34 on: February 15, 2007, 09:17:29 PM »
I vaguely remember when the Anglican Church and United Church were talking about union, back in the 1960s?  I met a man who had been a UC minister and switched to being an Anglican, I believe because the union talks broke down.  Years later, I had the impression he regretted having switched, as he liked where the UC was going.
Economics is a human creation, borders are human creations and nature doesn’t give a damn about these things. - David Suzuki

Boom Boom

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« Reply #35 on: February 15, 2007, 09:51:54 PM »
Anglican - United Church talks of union were doomed from the beginning, because the Anglicans would never compromise the historic episcopate. However, Anglicans and United share many church buildings across this country, as they have since the 1960s. There's generally good rapport between Anglicans and Uniteds; they even produced a joint hymnbook. I'd say that all of the old mainline churches have fairly good relationships among themselves. Anglicans and Roman Catholics have had an international dialogue going back many years. However, Anglicans will never, ever return to the RC fold. We enjoy freedom.

Boom Boom

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« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2007, 07:50:13 AM »
Anglican leaders avoid church split over homosexuals

http://www.guardian.co.uk/gayrights/sto ... 19,00.html

Archbishop's report seen as rebuff to conservatives

(read the article - I didn't want to snip anything out)

Caissa

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« Reply #37 on: February 16, 2007, 09:01:21 AM »
You win. :D  Did the Family feed you inside advance info?

Boom Boom

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« Reply #38 on: February 16, 2007, 10:06:52 AM »
:spy: :spy:  Sorry, can't divulge my secrets.  :spy:  :spy:

'lance

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« Reply #39 on: February 16, 2007, 10:16:23 AM »
And too besides, I'd have guessed Boom Boom's Family were devotees of a certain older, and rather larger Church.

Boom Boom

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« Reply #40 on: February 16, 2007, 10:27:56 AM »
We was excommunicated. :shock:

Caissa

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« Reply #41 on: February 16, 2007, 10:32:03 AM »
Even the Family has its schismatics :flame  :spy:

Boom Boom

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« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2007, 10:37:33 AM »
This about sums it up for me, the very last line of the article:

Bob Williams, the US Episcopal church's director of communications, said: "Anglicans around the world are ready for a way forward, so that we can focus on more important things such as poverty, hunger and preventable disease and being Christ's hands in the world."

I guess there is reason for optimism in this church, after all.

Caissa

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« Reply #43 on: February 20, 2007, 08:14:43 AM »
Anglican Journal News: Anglican leaders say U.S. church must bar
same-sex
blessings, election of gay bishops

Marites N. Sison
staff writer
Feb 19, 2007

Primates of the Anglican Communion have given the U.S. Episcopal Church
until September 30 to ³make an unequivocal common covenant² that its
bishops
will not allow same-sex blessings in their churches and that it would
not
consent to the election and consecration of a bishop living in a
same-sex
union ³unless some new consensus on this matter emerges² across the
Anglican
world.

Failure to do so would mean that ³the relationship between The Episcopal
Church and the Anglican Communion as a whole remain damaged at best, and
this has consequences for the full participation of the Church in the
life
of the Communion,² the communiqué warned. It did not specify what those
³consequences² would be.

³The response of the Episcopal Church to the requests made at (the 2005
primates¹ meeting in) Dromantine has not persuaded this meeting that we
are
yet in a position to recognize that the Episcopal Church has mended its
broken relationship,² said the communique, released at the end of a
tense
meeting held Feb. 15-19 in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

The primates said that while the American church has ³taken seriously²
the
recommendations of the Windsor Report, ³there remains a lack of clarity
about the stance of The Episcopal Church, especially its position on the
authorization of the Rites of Blessing for persons living in same-sex
unions.² It noted that ³there appears to be an inconsistency between the
position of the General Convention and local pastoral provision.²

The primates also said they would  establish a ³Pastoral Council² that
would
³negotiate the necessary structures for pastoral care² to American
bishops,
dioceses and congregations that have moved to disassociate from the
Episcopal Church following disputes over the place of homosexuals in the
church. The Council would also liaise with conservative primates of the
communion who have exercised Episcopal oversight over parishes in the
U.S.,
a move that has been criticized as an invasion of the American
province¹s
jurisdiction.

The council would consist of up to five members: two to be nominated by
the
primates, two by the presiding bishop of the U.S., and a primate to be
nominated by the Archbishop of Canterbury as chair.

³We believe that such a scheme is robust enough to function and provide
sufficient space for those who are unable to accept the direct ministry
of
their bishop or the Presiding Bishop to have a secure place within The
Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion until such as time as the
covenant process is complete,² the primates said.

The primates urged U.S. conservative groups that have been lobbying the
Archbishop of Canterbury for a ³commissary² to lead them, to negotiate
with
the Council ³to find a place for them within these provisions.²

In explaining why it offered these prescriptions to the American church,
the
primates said, ³We believe that it would be a tragedy if The Episcopal
Church was to fracture, and we are committed to doing what we can to
preserve and uphold its life.²

The communiqué also welcomed the decision by U.S. Presiding Bishop
Katharine
Jefferts Schori to consent to the appointment of a ³primatial vicar² for
dioceses that do not wish to accept her leadership. Some congregations
in
the U.S. refuse to ordain women, while others disagree with Bishop
Jefferts
Schori¹s more-liberal stance on homosexuality.

The drafting and release of the communiqué took longer than expected,
with
news reports saying that during the last day of their meeting, the
primates
were still locked in debate past midnight. A scheduled press conference
was
canceled and the question of whether a communiqué would be released at
all
was raised by some primates, reported the British newspaper The
Telegraph.
³It was believed that the primate of Nigeria, Archbishop Peter Akinola,
is
leading a rearguard action by a rump of hardline conservatives,²
reported
The Telegraph. ³They were deeply unhappy with early drafts of the
communiqué
because it fails to rebuke the liberal American Episcopal church for
bringing Anglicanism to the brink of schism by consecrating its first
openly
gay bishop in 2003.²

Meanwhile, the draft of a proposed covenant intended to heal bitter
divisions over human sexuality in the global Anglican Communion was
presented to the primates during their meeting. The covenant includes a
potentially controversial section that calls on member churches of the
Communion to commit themselves to six things, including submitting
before
primates ³matters in serious dispute among churches that cannot be
resolved
by mutual admonition and counsel.²It adds that, ³If the primates believe
that the matter is not one for which a common mind has been articulated,
they will seek it with the other instruments (of unity) and their
councils.²
(The other ³instruments of unity² in the Communion include the Archbishop
of
Canterbury, the Lambeth Conference of bishops, and the international
Anglican Consultative Council.) Earlier, some members of the Anglican
Consultative Council had asked what authority the primates¹ meeting had
to
request that the Canadian and American churches  ³voluntarily withdraw²
from
a meeting of the council in June 2005. Concerns had been expressed that
the
primates¹ meeting is being granted more authority than what it was
traditionally intended to be: nothing more than a collegial body for
heads
of Anglican provinces.

The draft covenant also commits churches ³to heed the counsel of our
instruments of communion in matters which threaten the unity of the
communion and the effectiveness of our mission.² While it notes that the
instruments of communion ³have no juridical or executive authority in
our
provinces,² they are nonetheless ³bodies by which our common life in
Christ
is articulated and sustained, and which therefore carry a moral
authority
which commands our respect.²

If churches choose not to abide by the covenant ³we will consider that
such
churches will have relinquished for themselves the force and meaning of
the
covenant¹s purpose, and a process of restoration and renewal will be
required to re-establish their covenant relationship with other member
churches,² it added.

Archbishop Drexel Gomez, primate of the Church in the West Indies, who
headed the group that assembled the covenant, described the draft
proposal
as ³a statement of classical Anglicanism, but it is not one size fits
all.²

In a press briefing, Archbishop Gomez said the covenant aims ³to provide
the
Anglican Communion with a mechanism of mutual accountability of holding
one
another together. We believe that when it is finally approved we will have
a
means of holding each other in check and dealing with difficulties from
time
to time.²

The primates have made some suggestions to the covenant and have asked
the
Archbishop of Canterbury to send a letter asking all Anglican provinces
to
study and respond to the document within the next year.

³The proposal is that a revised draft will be discussed at the Lambeth
Conference, so that the bishops may offer further reflections and
contributions,² the primates¹ communiqué said. (The next Lambeth
Conference,
the decennial meeting of the world¹s Anglican bishops, will be held in
Canterbury, England, from July 16 to Aug.4, 2008.)

After presentation to the bishops, the final text of the covenant will
be
presented to the Anglican Consultative Council for approval, after which
it
would be offered to the 38 provinces of the communion for ratification.

Boom Boom

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« Reply #44 on: February 20, 2007, 08:29:19 AM »
The Communique is entirely focussed on the Episcopal Church of the USA (ECUSA) with no mention of Canada or the UK (none that I've seen, anyway). It's driven by the IRD and Peter Akinola, and I predict the ECUSA House of Bishops will respond by saying 'we reject this' and let the chips fall where they may. I doubt the HOB will feel very accomodating towards the document. That will create more tension, because ECUSA is the main financial backer of mission in the Anglican Communion. My opinion is that if the Global South isn't happy being in the Anglican Communion because of the sexual theology of the rest of the Communion, they're welcome to leave. BTW, the Anglican Church in South Africa doesn't share the views of Peter Akinola and the leaders of the Global South, and there certainly will be other dioceses as well that will remain in the Communion if there indeed is a break.

 

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