Skip to comments.Rival Lambeth warning
Posted on 07/06/2006 4:41:38 PM PDT by sionnsar
The Church of Nigeria will back a rival Lambeth Conference in 2008 if the Archbishop of Canterbury is unable to bring the recalcitrant American Church to account. In a statement released at the close of the Church of Nigerias House of Bishops meeting on June 28 in Abuja, the leaders of the largest church in the Communion stated that The Episcopal Church had rejected the key tenets of the Windsor Report. The revisionists had failed to grasp the reason for repentance from the harm and stress they have caused this Communion.
The American Churchs contumacy had impaired the unity of the Church the bishops argued, by promoting teachings and practises that are alien and inimical to the historic formularies of the Church. Holding a Lambeth Conference in 2008 was questionable under these circumstances. The good brought to the Communion by the gathering of Anglican bishops from across the Communion every 10 years should not be lost to the church, however, the bishops stated, calling upon the leadership of the Global South and the bishops of the African churches to do everything necessary to put in place a Conference of all Anglican Bishops in 2008. The call for a rival Lambeth Conference was conditional, the Nigerian bishops noted, and would be held only if all efforts to get the apostles of revisionist agenda to repent and retrace their steps failed. A spokesman for Lambeth Palace told The Church of England Newspaper they were studying the Nigerian statement. While the Nigerian Bishops communiqué is the first formal call for a second Lambeth Conference, the exclusion of the American bishops from Lambeth has been an ongoing topic of conversation since 2003. Global South leaders have repeatedly stated they would not attend Lambeth 2008 if the Episcopal Church remained undisciplined for its actions.
The knowledge that their invitation to Lambeth was in doubt prompted the American bishops to endorse a last-minute compromise resolution on the Windsor Report at their June General Convention. Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold framed the debate for the Bishops telling them if we dont have something substantial to show in response to the Windsor Report, it would be very hard for the Archbishop of Canterbury to invite us to the Lambeth Conference. Dr Williams plans for the 2008 Lambeth Conference have evolved over the past two years. At the June 2005 meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Nottingham, he stated the forthcoming meeting of bishops would be didactic, focusing on training and education of bishops. In his June 27, 2006, paper The Challenge and Hope of Being an Anglican Today, Dr Williams suggested the Conference would take on a more deliberative tone and address the Windsor Reports call for an Anglican Covenant. There is no way in which the Anglican Communion can remain unchanged by what is happening at the moment, he wrote.
But if we are to continue to be any sort of Catholic church, if we believe that we are answerable to something more than our immediate environment and its priorities and are held in unity by something more than just the consensus of the moment, we have some very hard work to do to embody this more clearly. The next Lambeth Conference ought to address this matter directly and fully as part of its agenda, Dr Williams stated.
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