The latest draft of an Anglican covenant is expected to be released next week ahead of the ACC meeting. The Rev. Dr. Ephraim Radner, one of two Episcopal Church members on the Covenant Design Group, told ENS April 3, at the conclusion of the design group's latest meeting, that it is "warmly commending this draft" to the ACC, which is the only communion body with the authority to ask the Anglican provinces to sign onto the covenant.
Dramatically contrasting Radner's statement, they quote Bishop Schori as downplaying the whole thing to something more like a networking soiree, where she will be "reconnecting with old friends, meeting new ones, and learning more about the vast and diverse ministry within the Anglican Communion." Nothing like spending thirteen days in the West Indies costing God knows how much during a recession just to swap howdies and chat each other up on "vastness and diversity." Why not just Skype each other and call it a day?
The ACC is one of the "Instruments of Unity" in the Anglican Communion. Documents have been posted to the AC website here. The schedule is here.
The next meeting is May 1-13 in Kingston, Jamaica. Topping the agenda is Covenant & Windsor Continuation Group matters, even though both the Presiding Bishop and House of Deputies president have stated their intentions not to bring the Covenant up before General Convention while they remain in office.
The participants are listed here. Of interest is that the Province of the Southern Cone has not yet informed the Anglican Communion office who will be representing their province.
Here's the press release on the Jamaica meeting:
The Anglican Consultative Council, made up of lay people, clergy and bishops from the 38 Anglican Provinces of the Communion, meets in Kingston Jamaica May 1 - 13, to consider among other things, mission in the 21st century, the future structure of the worldwide Church, and theological education.Read it all here.
The ACC meets approximately every three years under the presidency of the Archbishop of Canterbury, who will give a presidential address on May 11.
Foremost on the agenda for this, the 14th meeting of the Council, will be consideration of a Covenant for the Provinces of the Anglican Communion and reception of the final report of the Windsor Continuation Process. Both of these documents are key to discerning a way forward for the Anglican Communion in light of recent stresses cause by differences over matters of human sexuality.
In a letter sent to all ACC members, Anglican Communion Secretary General Kenneth Kearon says: “Our 11 days together will provide an opportunity for us to engage with the Mission of the Anglican Communion through the work of its commissions, networks and working groups as well as experience something of the life and vitality of the local Anglican Church."
Many of the networks and working groups that help profile various areas of interest in the Anglican world including peace and justice, the international women’s network and inter-faith concerns will report during the meeting. Ms Hellen Wangusa, the Anglican observer at the United Nations will speak on mission
The ACC’s opening service will be on Sunday May 3 at the National Arena. On Sunday, May 10, ACC delegates will participate in Mission Sunday at various churches across the Diocese. The closing event will be a service to be held at the Cathedral of St. Jago de la Vega, Spanish Town, on May 12.
All plenary sessions and worship services are open to media. Plenary sessions will be held at the Pegasus Hotel in Kingston. Daily news briefings will be held and podcast as soon as possible on http://www.anglicancommunion.org to enable media and interested Anglicans from around the world to follow the proceedings. A final news briefing is scheduled for Tuesday, May 12.
The current chair of the ACC is Bishop John Paterson of Auckland, New Zealand. Canon Kearon serves as the secretary to ACC meetings.