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Midwest Conservative Journal ^ | 1/27 | Christopher Johnson

Posted on 01/27/2007 9:10:22 PM PST by Huber

Mark Harris spins the Dar es Salaam news as best he can:

The choice of Bishop MacPherson is an interesting one. He is a fine bishop and has just recently been made the President of the Presiding Bishop’s Council of Advice. He is conservative but a very constructive and pastoral person. His presence is, however, contrary to the Council of Advice’s own read of the matter of inviting additional people from the Episcopal Church. The Episcopal News Service article on the meeting said this; "The Council was not encouraging of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s consideration of additional "dissenting" bishops from this Church attending the Primates’ Meeting."

So Bishop MacPherson goes as the President of a Council that advised against consideration of additional "dissenting" bishops attending the meeting. Believing him to be a person of great integrity I am sure he goes not as a "dissenting" bishop and not with the understanding that he is attending the Primates Meeting. We may rightly hope that he will be a moderate voice.

Once again, however, there seems to be no voice beyond the pale of the purple, no voice from the progressive bishops, clergy or laity, and no voice from Gay and Lesbian persons.

Perhaps the Archbishop of Canterbury thinks that our voices are already present in the voice of our Primate. The answer, of course, is yes and no. Yes, she is the Presiding Bishop for all of us in the Episcopal Church and we are glad of it. No, she is not the voice specifically of any of these communities - clergy, lay, Gay or Lesbian - but rather the primary voice of who we are as a Church expressing itself through General Convention. Her voice alone is not the progressive voice.

But since Bob Duncan will be at the meeting as well, Mark's having a hard time remaining optimistic.

The Agenda is not yet out, but two things seem clear:

(i) The Moderator is present supposedly for the first part of the meeting only, in order to report to the Primates the concerns of the realignment community, but that could change. The Living Church noted, "In recent years, the primates have become less beholden to the agenda initially proposed by the Archbishop of Canterbury. The agenda for the February 2005 meeting in Northern Ireland, for example, was changed significantly once the meeting began."

(ii) It seems that some of the Primates are in no mood to let the Agenda move on until the question of membership in the group is clarified, and that clarification will involve a challenge to the Presiding Bishop’s presence.

The Moderator is now waiting in the wings.

What is the Archbishop thinking?

It doesn’t matter who else he brings into the conversation. The fact is the Moderator is in the building. If the Primates were to decide to invite someone not the Primate of the Episcopal Church to sit with them as an American Anglican presence what would there be to prevent them? If they decide to disinvite the Presiding Bishop, what then?

What is going on here? Has Rowan Williams finally decided to cut the Americans loose?

I'm not sure. But I think three facts need to be kept in mind. The first is that Rowan Williams is a much more complex person than his simple-minded, fundamentalist detractors. As I said before, Dr. Williams, unlike his liberal critics, realizes that serious people may come to quite different conclusions about this or that issue than he does and that their disagreement with him is not the result of "hatred" or "bigotry."

The second is this. Whatever his theological views may be, Dr. Williams believes that the Anglican Communion is something valuable and its break-up would be a tragedy. In conversations over the last several months, he's heard from the primates and what he's heard is that unless the Americans are reined in, he will lose the Communion or at least the most substantial, vigorous part of it.

The third consideration is TEC's 2006 General Convention. More than anything else, that had to have convinced Dr. Williams that the Americans were going to go their own way no matter what. Dr. Williams had to have been hoping that TEC would give him something, anything, that he could take to the Africans as evidence of the Episcopalian willingness to compromise

But he got nothing at all. All Frank and Kate could produce was Resolution B033 which indirectly addressed the first Windsor Report request and completely ignored the second. Add to all this the facts that that a substantial body of TEC bishops, led by Washington DC's John Chane, almost immediately declared that they would not be bound by B033 and that diocese after diocese, Newark being the latest, has repudiated it.

On top of it all was the fact that TEC's new Presiding Bishop was the single most confrontational candidate TEC could have possibly have elected(Schori has said that B033 was a temporary measure) and you have a church that is not genuinely repentant for what it did in 2003. The Global South figured out a while back that TEC couldn't be trusted. It's nice to know that the rest of the Anglican world has caught up.

So Dr. Williams owes nothing to the Americans. They have made it plain, from the 1998 Lambeth Conference on, that they will do whatever they want. My gracious lord of Canterbury seems quite prepared for the primates to declare that Bob Duncan or Bruce MacPherson would do just fine as a substitute US Anglican primate until such time as TEC learns a little humility

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant
KEYWORDS: anglican

1 posted on 01/27/2007 9:10:22 PM PST by Huber
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To: ahadams2; Way4Him; Peach; Zippo44; piperpilot; ex-Texan; ableLight; rogue yam; neodad; Tribemike; ..
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Humor: The Anglican Blue (by Huber)

Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15

2 posted on 01/27/2007 9:23:46 PM PST by Huber (And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. - John 1:5)
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