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The Orthodox Archipelago [ECUSA/Anglican]
Southern Anglican ^ | 7/12/2005 | Greg Griffith

Posted on 07/12/2005 12:17:19 PM PDT by sionnsar

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Lipscomb: Walk With Windsor, or Walk Apart

Christopher Johnson points us to Diocese of Southwest Florida Bishop John Lipscomb's reflections on the Windsor Report, in which he delivers a stinging rebuke (albeit in marshmallow-soft Episcospeak) to the latent racism of his colleagues at 815:

Integrity as faithful disciples of Jesus Christ in a global context no longer allows the Anglican Churches in the West the luxury to assume a position of preeminence in the theological and ethical teachings of the Communion. The provinces in the developing nations of the Global South have emerged as rapidly growing, theologically sophisticated communities offering leadership within the Communion. If we continue to assume the right to teach, we must also accept the responsibility to learn from those who live in a cultural milieu different from our own.
In other words: So much for the "backwards Africans" angle.

Lipscomb is refreshingly clear about what it will mean for dioceses and parishes that choose not to proceed in accordance with Windsor:

Within ECUSA there will be those who after prayerful consideration conclude that they must be faithful to the decisions of the General Convention 2003 which have strained and in some cases broken the bonds of affection within the Communion. To decide on such a course is to make a conscious decision to walk apart from the Anglican Communion.

It can't be put much more clearly than that: Lipscomb is saying flatly that support of the actions of General Convention 2003 is incompatible with continued membership in the Anglican Communion.

What +Lipscomb says next, though, is perhaps even more explosive:

There will be others who will choose to accept the recommendations of the Windsor Report and remain in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury and the other Anglican provinces. Those who choose to remain must fully embrace the radical claims of interdependence within a global community. Such individuals, congregations, and dioceses have a rightful and constitutional claim to be the Episcopal Church in the United States.

What the bishop appears to be saying is that the Episcopal Church is, by definition, a constituent member of the Anglican Communion; that individuals, parishes and dioceses may come and go, but that there is no Episcopal Church outside the Communion. More to the point: Those who wish to take their theological leave of the Anglican Communion may do so, and we should be gracious to them upon their departure, but they must leave behind the Episcopal Church. They may not take it with them.

If +Lipscomb intends to stand by these words, it is hard to conjure a scenario in which his diocese is part of an ECUSA that is itself no longer part of the Communion. Indeed, +Lipscomb seems to be arguing that can be no scenario in which ECUSA is not part of the Communion.

This is a bold assertion in the face of an ECUSA leadership that behaves as if as they go, so goes the Episcopal Church. +Lipscomb is doing nothing less than saying Frank Griswold and the bishops who constitute his power base are not the church, but merely caretakers, and that if they don't take care to keep it in communion with the See of Canterbury, they must hand it over to such leaders who will.

1 posted on 07/12/2005 12:17:19 PM PDT by sionnsar
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Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15

2 posted on 07/12/2005 12:21:08 PM PDT by sionnsar (†† || Iran Azadi || Kyoto: Split Atoms, not Wood)
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