I'm here at the 2009 CANA (Convocation of Anglicans in North America) Council meeting at the Church of the Epiphany in Herndon, VA. We've had meetings and gatherings and teachings as well as the Bishop of CANA's pastoral address today. There is a wide-variety of folks here (talk about full inclusion!) - from low church evangelicals to high church Anglo Catholics, women who are nuns and women who are ordained clergy, lots of military chaplains (that's a ministry that is just exploding in CANA), midwesterners and southerners and westerners and every thing in between - church planters looking at architecture plans at the Scott-Long Booth to delegates hovering over the book table, seminars on healing and seminars on art, Trinity School for Ministry is here as well as many others who have ministry booths lining the halls going into the main church nave. The parking lot is packed with cars with plates from all over the country - there's far more blending in rather than staying in comfortable huddles as relationships continue to be built and expanded. It really does feel like a family now - and the family is growing!
Here is an excerpt from Bishop Martyn Minns' pastoral address where he outlines what has happened in the Anglican Communion over the past year:
You can read his entire address here.
One of the most interesting things to watch is how CANA will be folded in to ACNA. I've been doing a lot of thinking about that. For us in Virginia, we've seen CANA as a lifeboat - but not the Love Boat. The question is - when will we hit land? Is land far off - or will it come in sight soon? This is one of the major questions. There seems a lot of energy to move into the Anglican Church of North America (CANA is not a church, but is it a diocese?). But if it's a diocese then what are the districts that are springing up, following the Anglican District of Virginia (ADV) model? Are those future dioceses in ACNA or are they more like regions or deaneries you'd find in a diocese? This is a time to ask questions - and realize that answers aren't going to be discovered by someone else. The answers are nearer than that - in fact, they may be as close as the person sitting next to you.
We are delighted to be hosting one of the council delegates from Florida in our home. It is truly a blessing!
I think it would be very difficult to fit the facts of CANA into the Virginia Division statute if CANA folded into ACNA before ACNA was recognized as part of the Anglican Communion or brought into communion with the Church of England in some form. The process in Virginia was designed from the beginning to touch the bases of the Virginia Division statute in order to claim property that formerly was controlled by Episcopal congregations. Even if ACNA eventually does gain formal recognition of other elements of the Anglican Communion, the timing is awkward since the property takeovers precede ACNA's formation.
Wonderful news, Mary. God is faithful!
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