Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Questions are being raised on whether Episcopal Presiding Bishop will be included in Anglican Primates meeting following actions of the Diocese of Los Angeles

Questions are being raised on whether Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori will be included in the Anglican Primates meeting.  Questions are also being raised as to the timing of Kenneth Kearon's actions in breaking the bonds of affection with the Southern Cone before the SC House of Bishops meet.  Learn more in this cam2cam interview from Anglican TV:


Floridian said...

There is also a 4th Moratoria: the cessation of lawsuits of which TEC is also in violation.

Steven in Falls Church said...

They aren't "lawsuits" but merely "defensive actions against IRD aggressors." Get it?

Daniel Weir said...

I wouldn't characterize Canon Kearon's actions as breaking the bonds of affection. However, I don't think it was right to remove anyone from those bodies. First, they weren't representatives of their churches but people with particular knowledge and experience. Second, pretending that there isn't diversity within the Communion is a losing proposition.

I have long decided that the requests contained in Windsor were just that, requests. People have made their own decisions - in conscience - about whether or not to honor them.

RSchllnbrg said...

It sounds like you have no use for boundaries, Father.

That you consider them to be requests is special. It's nice. But I'm not sure that in this case perception is reality. What if I considered those pesky Ten Commandments as suggestions, about which, I can, in conscience, make my own decisions? I'm not sure my deciding something will make it so.

Reminds me of that someday-to-be-called-classic-scene in the movie Monster-in-law where Jane Fonda says, “I can do boundaries. I don’t like them, but I can do them.” Has TEC met any boundaries it likes? I mean other than geographic ones like diocesan boundaries, which we’ve been told come from ancient times and have always been considered sacred?

That TEC leaders are not keen on the Covenant or being held accountable may not be a sign that the boundaries are bad, just that we don't like them. Or like anyone setting boundaries for us, thank you very much. Or being held accountable. We can do that for ourselves if we really need any. I find it fun that TEC holds priests accountable and inhibits them, but is not willing to be held accountable from outside because we are an autonomous body. One that belongs to a larger body, but we have our own canons and don’t mess with us. We took a vote, don’t you know.

TEC sort of begs the question of whether a group, even a diverse one, can or must set some boundaries for what the group calls appropriate. The NFL has rules about what is allowed and what is not, for the safety of all involved. Players get fined or even suspended if they make decisions, in good conscience, to do what they wish and not play within the boundaries that are set. Father are you suggesting the Anglican Communion does not have the ability or power or even the need to set boundaries? Or is it merely that the Anglican Communion should only have boundaries that you, in good conscience, can accept, as well, recommendations?

There is something so very adolescent (referring to the nature of pushing against the rules in order to show self determination and carve out an identity, and not meant as "sophomoric") about TEC's behavior. I wonder what it will be like when it grows out of this phase. Perhaps TEC is not so much walking apart as growing apart from the rest of the Anglican Communion. At least it seems that way to me.

“Boundaries. Boundaries …” as Tevye might say, “Without our boundaries we would be as shaky as …”

Observer said...

well - Lambeth 08 showed Williams that the GS means it when they say they are not willing to spend more years and years talking with revisionists who will not change their ways regardless of what the majority in the AC thinks or says.....the GS can see the "long game" politics and its "inch at a time" strategy. Given how few Americans are enchanted with it, the GS really has no incentive to embrace it and deviate from 2000 yrs of teaching...and the view of the church catholic today.

Does the GS need to be linked to Canterbury to carry on its mission as Anglican Christians? Clearly not. It is another to whom they must stay connected.

So, does Williams want to end his time as ABC with the AC splitting and hand on about a quarter of what he took over in ASA with the GS gone....and that proportion which he could keep in some fudge, well that is shrinking week by week.....?

Lapinbizarre said...


What's with the problem so many "reasserters" have when it comes to addressing or referring to Venables by his correct title, which is "Presiding Bishop"? And what, for that matter and come to think of it, is with his failing to correct the error?

Daniel Weir said...

Comparing the Windsor Report to the Decalogue? I have read WR - several times - and its author's understood that they could not command but only request. The Primates seemed to think that they could command, but that is not the nature of their role in the Communion.Many of the Primates havbe already decided that we are de facto out of the Communion. The Covenant may lead to precise boundaries on some issues and we may be de jure out of the Communion and, as I have said so many times that I'm tired of saying it, I will accept that. Remaining in the Communion by violating my convictions is not an option for me.

Lapinbizarre said...

Curious, incidentally, to know where in the Windsor Report a moratorium on lawsuits is stated.

FWIW: "This Report is not a judgement" - Robin Eames, then Archbishop of Armagh and Chairman of the Lambeth Commission in the preamble to the Report.

Anonymous said...

I am of the impression that the leadership of ECUSA feels they can go any direction they want, theologically speaking, but still be included within the "Anglican Communion". Don't you think there needs to be strict theological guidelines for inclusion in such a "communion". Every other denomination has theological guidelines that churches must adhere to to be included. You couldn't be a part of the United Reformed Church if you didn't confess the 3 forms of Unity. I am of the opinion that it is the latitude of "theological" diversity that has brought us to defecting churches, lawsuits, and a general sense of chaos within "Anglicanism". I didn't grow up Episcopalian...and I have no loyalty to the ABC. I believe that traditional Reformation Anglicanism is solid, both Biblically, and theologically. So I attend an Anglican church. I would applaud a strong theological covenant to dispose of all the liberal, post modern nonsense that has destroyed much of the Protestant world, theologically.
J Gresham Machen said it best...we are at war with liberalism within our churches. I think a strong theological statement would be a step in the right direction.

Anonymous said...

It would be easy to honor a moratorium on litigation if departing groups would stop laying claim to property under the civil laws, as has happened in Virginia and, I believe, elsewhere. Once those claims are asserted, either overtly or through adverse possession, the result of not responding in a secular context is default. Default is dispositive of the issue and there is no way that one can later revive the matter to determine ownership at law.


Observer said...

the moratorium on law in 1 Cor 5-7 ...... other relevant issues are handled there too....and we can agree that it is much more authoritative than the WR!

jschwarz42 said...

"... Every other denomination has theological guidelines that churches must adhere to be included ..." But, Josh, it has been historically from its origins the special charism of Anglicanism that it is NOT a "confessional" church - and does NOT understand "communion" in terms of an enforced theological uniformity or "ortho-doxy"; but rather in terms of mutual respect, common worship, fellowship ("koinonia") and a common life together. Thus a common, shared prayer book as the centerpiece of unity within each church. Thus the fact (ignored by many) that resolutions from any centralized institution or council such as Lambeth have until very recently been uniformly understood to be purely advisory - not as setting up some kind of binding "official positions" for the entire Anglican Communion on an issue. Anglicanism's gift, which it offers as an example in this post-modern world of diversity to other denominations whose own historic adherence to narrow doctrinal definitions has led to nothing but the "scandal" of strife and fragmentation over the centuries, is that it is a "both .. and" church - starting with its birth as an experiment in joining 16th century Catholics and Protestants into one national church.

I spent the first 55 years of my life in a church (the Roman Catholic Church) which has through history used authoritarianism based upon a rigidly enforced doctrinal uniformity to create a spiritually unhealthy climate in which true community became difficult. It troubles me to see so many hankering to take the Anglican Communion down this road toward a Roman-style centralized authority and uniform doctrine.

We do in fact have a well-accepted and sensibly limited standard of "doctrinal" unity internationally among the independent and autonomous churches of the Communion. It is the 125-year-old Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral, which remains a good modest and broad-based statement of all that should be necessary to accept as a basis for communion within this community of national churches, defined by a shared heritage rather than a shared doctrine. What need have we of a "covenant" - which will only give one side another tool to promote factionalism by insisting on doctrinal purity and adherence to a narrow standard that many in good faith cannot (and should not need to) accept. It is not the "latitude of theological diversity" that has brought dissension and defections. It has been the stubborn, self-righteous, we-and-we-alone-know-the-mind-of-Christ attitude which, in a way that is very un-Anglican, has refused to accept that "gift" of diversity of opinion that God has graciously given us in this Anglicanism - and to have the basic loving "respect" (the true basis for "bonds of affection" in a church) to recognize that others with whom we disagree doctrinally may still have a part of God's Truth that we could learn from them - if we listen. God, as Isaiah once observed, is often found "doing a new thing among us". Many find that uncomfortable, and are unwilling to even consider that the "new thing" may be coming from God - and that true faithfulness may consist in embracing the new thing that God offers us in the communal experience and discernment arising among God's people (or a section of God's people).


oldmiler said...

How very Fox News of you to title this piece "Questions are being raised . . ." NO ONE in the "pipeline" through which invitations to visit with the Archbishop of Canterbury are extended is questioning PB Jefferts Schori's attendance at the next primates gathering. Presiding Bishop Venables is casting aspersions.
Is he a Christian? I'm just asking.

jschwarz42 said...

Regarding lawsuits and "moratoria":- (1) "moratorium" is a concept brought up in Windsor. It was a suggestion; not a command from God, nor having scriptural authority. (Although Windsor seems to be cited as if it were Scripture these days! Does anyone remember when this admittedly deeply flawed and one-sided document first came out and conservatives uniformly condemned it precisely because it was not punitive enough!) And lawsuits were indeed not a moratorium among the enumerated moratoria. And "moratorium" means "temporary delay" - not a permanent ban (another thing that people seem to ignore).

(2) 1 Cor 6 is clearly talking about disputes between individual members of the community. Context! Paul is saying such disputes within the local Christian community should be settled within the community, not by outsiders. I think there are big problems (on which I could elaborate) with uncritically applying this injunction to disputes about commonly-held church property between churches (or between national churches and breakaway dioceses). And "lawsuits" today in modern democratic societies are not like "lawsuits" in the bestial classical world of the Roman Empire 2,000 years ago. We really do not know what Paul would say in today's context. However, I agree there ought to be a better way (but I do not know of one).


Lapinbizarre said...

"the moratorium on law in 1 Cor 5-7". Go tell that one to All Saints, Pawleys Island, Observer - they instituted the first of the suits - a fact which, unlike who began the Virginia suits (and please let's not get started on that one again) is not in dispute. My question concerned where in the Windsor Report this is found. Like to have another crack at it?

Anonymous said...

"narrow doctrinal definitions has led to nothing but the "scandal" of strife and fragmentation over the centuries"

so that hasn't happened within the Anglican Communion, even without a doctrinal position? I agree that the BCP is what SHOULD bind us together in worship, and in theology, BUT which BCP? 1662? A "gender-neutral version? 1928? And without an authoritative body to discipline error/heresy, you have a "communion" that can't even agree on the Resurrection, or the Virgin Birth.

Wilf said...

I'm also a great fan of the Chicago Lambeth Quadrilateral, and love the idea of a church which is not "confessional" but rather creedal and reliant upon the authority of Scripture.

Other churches, with their church cultures which differ from ours, do have narrower doctrinal definitions. They tend to think that, amongst other things, these narrower doctrinal definitions will preserve them from losing faith in the central ones.

We Anglicans are, unfortunately, proving them right, and inspiring an increased polarity and fundamentalism.

Observer said...

jschwarz42 - the point is that most of the AC wants the AC to go in a certain direction....the ABC seems to have some sympathy given how his time has been hijacked by the actions of a tiny no in the AC. Now, some may not want to go with the majority of the AC....that is fine.....but the majority will not necessarily want to be held hostage by a few