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Breaking: Report of the Communion Sub-Group (on TEC’s response to the WR)

Thursday, February 15, 2007 • 8:56 am

This is the document, just released, was given to the Joint Standing Committee of the Primates meeting and the Anglican Consultative Council days ago. It has no doubt played an important role today…


Report of the Communion Sub-Group

The following is the report given to the Anglican Communion Joint Standing Committee of the Primates meeting and the Anglican Consultative Council.

Background

At their meeting in London in March 2006, the Joint Standing Committee of the Primates and the Anglican Consultative Council nominated four of its members to assist the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion in discerning the response of the Anglican Communion to the decisions of the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church.  Some of these decisions related to requests made of the Episcopal Church in the Primates’ Statement of February 2005 at Dromantine, which incorporated the Primates’ response to the recommendations of the Windsor Report.  The group appointed met in London in September 2006.

At the Primates’ meeting in Dromantine, the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church had made it abundantly clear that only General Convention was empowered under the constitution of the Episcopal Church to give a response to the sorts of undertakings requested in the Windsor Report on behalf of the Episcopal Church.  The Primates at Dromantine therefore decided to give the Episcopal Church (and the Anglican Church of Canada – although that Church is not the focus of current consideration) space to allow its proper processes to function.

The 75th General Convention

It is clear to this group that in the period following the Dromantine meeting, the Episcopal Church took the Windsor Report and the recommendations adopted by the Primates extremely seriously, establishing a Special Commission to work on its response, dedicating a particular legislative Committee (Special Legislative Committee 26) at the 75th General Convention to carry forward business associated with the Windsor Report, and devoting a lot of time to considering this work.

The response of the 75th General Convention to the Windsor Report as a whole in its resolutions was positive – Resolution A159[1] affirmed the Windsor Report, and its vision of the interdependent life of the Communion, including the appointment of a person to carry forward work on this proposal; the proposal for an Anglican Covenant was welcomed (Resolution A166[2] ); resolutions reflecting what the Windsor Report had had to say about the pastoral care of dissenting groups, and provincial autonomy were passed (A163[3] ).

The Primates gathered at Dromantine in February 2005 adopted three specific requests to the Episcopal Church from the Windsor Report:
first, a request that the Episcopal Church should express its regret that the proper constraints of the bonds of affection had been breached in the events surrounding the consecration as a bishop of a person whose lifestyle contradicted the standard of teaching enshrined in the Lambeth Resolution 1.10 (see paragraphs 18-23 below);

second, a moratorium on the election and consent of any candidate for the episcopate living in a same-gender union until some new consensus emerged in the Anglican Communion (see paragraphs 6-12 below); and third, a moratorium on public Rites of Blessing of same-sex unions (see paragraphs 13-17 below).

The Election of Bishops

Following debate on these matters throughout Convention, on the last day the Presiding Bishop, with the support of his successor who had been elected at the Convention, acted to propose a resolution which he believed expressed the mind of the majority of Convention delegates and bishops with respect to the second of the requests arising from the Windsor Report.  This became resolution B033, and was passed with impressive majorities in both the House of Bishops, where it was voted upon first, and subsequently in the house of Deputies.  The group believes that this resolution does express the clear view of the Convention.

The resolution states:

“Resolved, That the 75th General Convention receive and embrace The Windsor Report’s invitation to engage in a process of healing and reconciliation; and be it further

Resolved, That this Convention therefore call upon Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion.”

The group noted that, in this resolution, the language of moratorium from the Windsor Report had not been used.  It understood that legal counsel to the Convention advised that the language of a moratorium was difficult to embody in legislation under the provisions of the Episcopal Church’s constitution. 
Instead the resolution uses the language of “restraint”, and the group noted that there has been considerable discussion since General Convention about the exact force of that word. By requiring that the restraint must be expressed in a particular way - “by not consenting …”, however, the resolution is calling for a precise response, which complies with the force of the recommendation of the Windsor Report.  The resolution, which was passed by large majorities in both houses, therefore calls upon those charged with the giving of consent to the result of any election to the episcopate to refuse consent to candidates whose “manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion”.

In voting for this resolution, the majority of bishops with jurisdiction have indicated that they will refuse consent in future to the consecration of a bishop whose manner of life challenges the wider church and leads to further strains on Communion.  This represents a significant shift from the position which applied in 2003.  It was noted that a small number of bishops indicated that they would not abide by the resolution of General Convention, but in supporting the resolution the majority of bishops have committed themselves to the recommendations of the Windsor Report.

The group noted that while the Windsor Report restricted its recommendation to candidates for the episcopate who were living in a same gender union, the resolution at General Convention widened this stricture to apply to a range of lifestyles which present a wider challenge.  The group welcomed this widening of the principle, which was also recommended by the Windsor Report[4] , and commend it to the Communion.

The group believes therefore that General Convention has complied in this resolution with the request of the Primates.

Public Rites of Blessing for same-sex unions.

A separate recommendation in the Windsor Report and adopted by the Primates was the proposal for a moratorium on the authorisation of public Rites of Blessing of same-sex unions.  This issue, as well as others in the Windsor Report, had been addressed in a draft resolution, A161, which was defeated in the House of Deputies.  General Convention as a whole did not therefore specifically consider the question of a possible moratorium on same-sex unions.  However, it is significant that General Convention declined to take further a number of resolutions which had been drafted to support their introduction.  A summary of the current situation was included in a letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury from Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold[5] .

While this states the position at national level, the group noted that decisions affecting the use of public rites have more usually been made at diocesan level.  The Windsor Report, in recognising that fact, calls upon all bishops of the Anglican Communion to abide by the unanimous recommendation of the Primates in March 2003 and institute a moratorium on such rites[6] .

In a resolution of the 74th General Convention in 2003, the Episcopal Church recognised that local faith communities within its common life were exploring and experiencing such liturgies[7] , and while, at provincial level, it has done nothing to authorise such Rites, it has done nothing to check their development.  This creates a level of dissonance between the life of the Church at national level and at local level, which makes it hard to discern exactly where the Episcopal Church stands on this issue.

While the bishops of the Episcopal Church pledged themselves in March 2005 not to authorize any public rites for the blessing of same sex unions, and not to bless any such unions, at least until the General Convention of 2006, there is evidence that a variety of practices now apply across the United States in accordance with the acknowledgement given at the 74th General Convention in 2003.  (As we have already noted 75th General Convention in 2006 did not speak authoritatively the issue.)  There are dioceses in which progress towards the development of a public Rite of Blessing for same-sex unions has been initiated[8] ; other dioceses where, while there is no standard rite, guidelines have been issued by the bishop giving circumstances in which it may be permitted for priests of the diocese to offer such blessings[9] .  In other dioceses, permission has been given for the development of rites which cover a wide range of circumstances, but which could include circumstances where a same-sex couple were seeking a blessing on their relationship[10] .  Experimental liturgical resources have been produced in some dioceses which address amongst other matters, the area of pastoral care for same-gender couples[11] .  There are also dioceses which have only adopted a process of study around the subject, but which have not moved to the adoption of any kind of rite[12] .  Some commentators allege that up to sixteen dioceses out of a total of 108 dioceses and jurisdictions have moved in the direction of the authorisation of public Rites of Blessing which can be used to celebrate same-sex unions, but this is probably not demonstrable:  the real situation is very limited, but very complex and the wide range of practice and procedures means that it is difficult to establishment exactly what has and has not been approved.

It is therefore not at all clear whether, in fact, the Episcopal Church is living with the recommendations of the Windsor Report on this matter.  The Primates in their statement of March 2003 did admit that there could be “a breadth of private response to individual pastoral care”, but it is clear that the authorisation by any one bishop, diocese or Province, of any public Rite of Blessing, or permission to develop or use such a rite, would go against the standard of teaching to which the Communion as a whole has indicated that it is bound.  We do not see how bishops who continue to act in a way which diverges from the common life of the Communion can be fully incorporated into its ongoing life.  This is therefore a question which needs to be addressed urgently by the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church.

Expression of Regret

Finally, we must turn to the issue of the statement of regret requested by the Windsor Report, and affirmed by the Primates at Dromantine.  It is to be noted that the Windsor Report did not request “repentance”, although this request has been voiced in some quarters in the Communion.  Equally, the Windsor Report went beyond asking for an acknowledgement of the hurt and offence caused by the implications of the decision to consecrate a bishop living in an openly acknowledged sexual relationship outside marriage in contradiction to the teaching upheld in Lambeth Resolution 1.10.  The report argued that there had been a breach of the proper constraints of the bonds of affection, and it was this breach for which regret ought to be expressed.
In the event, the relevant resolution, approved by General Convention is as follows:

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, mindful of “the repentance, forgiveness, and reconciliation enjoined on us by Christ” (Windsor Report,  paragraph 134), express its regret for straining the bonds of affection in the events surrounding the General Convention of 2003 and the consequences which followed; offer its sincerest apology to those within our Anglican Communion who are offended by our failure to accord sufficient importance to the impact of our actions on our church and other parts of the Communion; and ask forgiveness as we seek to live into deeper levels of communion one with another.

A number of things have to be noted about this resolution.  In the first place, General Convention voted down a proposal to adopt the precise wording of the Windsor Report, arguing that it was impossible to know what “the proper constraints of the bonds of affection” were.  The group has some sympathy for this view.  Instead, however, Convention expressed regret for “straining the bonds of affection”, and offered its apology “to those offended by our failure to accord sufficient importance to the impact of our actions on our church and other parts of the Communion”.  It goes on to “ask forgiveness”.

The group was unsure how these words should be understood.  On the one hand, there does not seem to be any admission of the fact that the action of consenting to the particular election at the centre of this dispute was in itself blameworthy.  On the other, there is the use of the strong language of “apology” and the request for “forgiveness”. These words are not lightly offered, and should not be lightly received.  Taken with the apparent promise not to repeat the offence (Resolution B033 discussed above) we believe that the expression of regret is sufficient to meet the request of the primates.

The Group feels that the reality of the change of direction that some see in the resolutions of the General Convention can only be tested however by the way in which the Episcopal Church lives out these resolutions.

There was clearly a strong groundswell within the General Convention to walk more closely with the Communion and in the commitment to a common life.  There is considerable diversity of opinion within the Episcopal Church – as indeed there is across the life of the Communion.  It is clear that Lambeth Resolution 1.10 is going to continue for the foreseeable future as the standard of teaching by which the Anglican Communion as a whole will live.  It is also clear that it is not only those who have expressed their strong disassociation from the decisions of the 74th General Convention in 2003 who have a commitment to the life of the Communion.  There are many elements of the Episcopal Church who share that commitment, who wish to abide within the full recommendations of the Windsor Report and still remain committed to the life of the Episcopal Church.  It is the duty of the wider Communion to nourish and encourage all those within the Episcopal Church who wish to embrace our common and interdependent life.

Afterword

The issue of same-sex relationship has been on the agenda of the Instruments of Communion of the Anglican Communion since 1978.  Failure to address it then and on subsequent occasions has only exacerbated that situation.  Our churches and Communion have suffered greatly from that failure. Our Instruments of Communion must be pro-active in identifying such potentially divisive issues in the future.

We recognise that the Windsor Report was addressed to the whole of the Anglican Communion. This report has been concerned with the response by the Episcopal Church to that Report. We understand that the Anglican Church of Canada is in the process of preparing its response. We have to express our concern that other recommendations of the Windsor Report, addressed to other parts of the Communion, appear to have been ignored so far.

Members of the Sub-Group

The Archbishop of Canterbury
The Archbishop of Central Africa
The Archbishop of Wales
Chancellor Philippa Amable, Province of West Africa
Canon Elizabeth Paver, Church of England
The Secretary-General

This Report is available to download as a pdf document here

Appendix One
Extract from a letter sent by Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold to the Archbishop of Canterbury, 12 July 2006

With regard to the blessing of same sex unions, the report from the secretary of the Committee shows the following actions. The Committee considered three resolutions that pertained to the blessing of same sex unions. Resolution D054 would have directed the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music “to prepare for study and consideration by the 76th General Convention rites for inclusion in the Book of Occasional Services by means of which the Church may express that support….” Resolution D054 was neither considered nor acted upon by either House.

Resolution D017, entitled “Marriage Rite in Book of Common Prayer for Same-Sex Couples” was rejected by the House of Bishops upon the recommendation of the Special Legislative Committee #26.

Resolution C004, entitled “Response to Windsor Report” would have affirmed “support (of) the blessing of (same-sex) unions and the ordination or consecration of persons in those unions.” Another provision of the rules is that once a matter is addressed in one resolution, resolutions bearing on the same topic can be “discharged,” which means they are not considered further. Upon the recommendation of Special Legislative Committee #26, the House of Deputies discharged C004.

In all three of these cases of Resolution D054, D017 and C004 there was little support for the resolutions within the Special Legislative Committee. It was very clear from the actions of both the Special Legislative Committee, the House of Bishops and House of Deputies that the General Convention did not wish to move forward with the blessings of same sex unions.

In sum, therefore, the General Convention discharged or rejected or declined to consider all resolutions put forward with regard to authorization of blessings of same sex unions. Therefore, the position of the Episcopal Church remains unchanged: no rites of blessing are authorized and neither is the development of such rites.

1. Resolution A159

Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring, That the 75th General Convention of The Episcopal Church reaffirm the abiding commitment of The Episcopal Church to the fellowship of churches that constitute the Anglican Communion and seek to live into the highest degree of communion possible; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention reaffirm that The Episcopal Church is in communion with the See of Canterbury, upholding and propagating the historic Faith and Order as set forth in the Book of Common Prayer; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention join with the Archbishop of Canterbury, the primates, and the Anglican Consultative Council in making a commitment to the vision of interdependent life in Christ, characterized by forbearance, trust, and respect, and commend the Windsor Report and process as a means of deepening our understanding of that commitment; and be it further

Resolved, That as an expression of interdependence, the Presiding offices of both Houses work (contd.) in partnership with the churches of the Anglican Communion to explore ways by which there might be inter-Anglican consultation and participation on Standing Commissions of the General Convention of The Episcopal Church.

2. Resolution A166
Resolved, That the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church, as a demonstration of our commitment to mutual responsibility and interdependence in the Anglican Communion, support the process of the development of an Anglican Covenant that underscores   our unity in faith, order, and common life in the service of God’s mission; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention direct the International Concerns Standing Committee of the Executive Council and the Episcopal Church’s members of the Anglican Consultative Council to follow the development processes of an Anglican Covenant in the Communion, and report regularly to the Executive Council as well as to the 76th General Convention; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention report these actions supporting the Anglican Covenant development process,  noting such missiological and theological resources as the Standing Commission on World Mission and the House of Bishops’ Theology Committee to the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Joint Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates, and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion; and that the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church report the same to the Primates of the churches of the Anglican Communion.

3. Resolution A163
Resolved, That the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church affirm the centrality of effective and appropriate pastoral care for all members of this church and all who come seeking the aid of this church; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention commit the Episcopal Church to the ongoing engagement of and sensitive response to the request and need of all the people of God – in particular, but not exclusively, those who agree and those who disagree with the actions of this body, those who feel isolated thereby, and gay and lesbian persons within and without this Church; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention recognize the agonizing position of those who do not feel able to receive appropriate pastoral care from their own bishops, and urges the members of the House of Bishops to seek the highest degree of communion and reconciliation within their own dioceses, using when requested in good faith the Delegated Episcopal Pastoral Oversight (DEPO) process detailed in the March 2004 statement of the House of Bishops, “Caring for All the Churches”; and be it further

Resolved, That the 75th General Convention urge continued maintenance of historic diocesan boundaries,  the authority of the diocesan bishop, and respect for the historical relationships of the separate and autonomous Provinces of the Anglican Communion.

4. The Windsor Report, paragraph 131.

5. Excerpt attached in Appendix 1.

6. The Windsor Report, paragraph 143, 144.

7. Resolution C051(5) of the 74th General Convention

Resolved That we recognize that local faith communities are operating within the bounds of our common life as they explore and experience liturgies celebrating and blessing same-sex unions.

8. Cf. the diocese of Washington.

9. Cf. the dioceses of New Hampshire and Washington.

10. Cf. the diocese of Nevada.

11. Cf. the dioceses of Long Island and Vermont.

12. Cf. the dioceses of Atlanta and Hawaii.


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Comments:

If he wants to destroy the AC, +Cantuar could not have chosen a more effective method than this sort of communique.

In the meantime, I’m practicing crossing myself in the opposite direction.

[1] Posted by murbles on 02-15-2007 at 11:15 AM • top

I agree murbles.  This report is very sad.  I would love to be a fly on the wall as this meeting goes forth.

[2] Posted by JAC+ on 02-15-2007 at 11:18 AM • top

The proper response to this report is the same as that given by the members of the Delta fraternity sitting in the audience at the hearing on their proposed suspension in the movie Animal House.  Public decency precludes me from repeating it so I will describe it in more genteel fashion:  WHITEWASH!  There is no desire on the part of the leadership of TEC to submit to the Godly admonition of the rest of the Communion.  Instead, we get skillfully drafted resolutions without any binding effect, designed to evade the call to repentance while only appearing to take seriously the teaching of the catholic church.  If this becomes the actual response of the primates to GC2006, they can kiss goodbye any hope that a faithful remnant in TEC will sruvive long enough to care about the next Lambeth conference.

[3] Posted by DaveG on 02-15-2007 at 11:18 AM • top

Was this communique subtitled, “How to Turn a Fig Leaf Fragment into a Tuxedo”?  Good heavens, what a pathetic capitulation.

[4] Posted by Jeffersonian on 02-15-2007 at 11:19 AM • top

Reading this Report caused me to understand better why the Archbishop of Canterbury asked for the inclusion and ‘testimony’ of Bishops from within the Episcopal Church.  If he were merely going to trot out the Report and say, “See, they basically complied.  Well…at least they tried.” and have that be the last word, I doubt the others would have been invited.  Instead, I am made more hopeful for the inclusion of these other voices within TEC to give flavor to the true environment.

Okay, I am going to put the clear glasses back on now….

Blessings,  Andy W.

[5] Posted by Andy W. on 02-15-2007 at 11:19 AM • top

Before we get too upset, this was produced by the ACC, and so not too much of a surprise.  It will not be received well by at least half the primates.  How many orthodox were contributors to the committee that wrote this report?  How could they sign off on something like this?

[6] Posted by JAC+ on 02-15-2007 at 11:21 AM • top

Fudge.  Pure Fudge.  Yeah, the American House of Bishops needs to address the same sex blessings issue urgently.  Well, they won’t.  Not now, not ever.

[7] Posted by Brad Drell on 02-15-2007 at 11:22 AM • top

“In voting for this resolution, the majority of bishops with jurisdiction have indicated that they will refuse consent in future to the consecration of a bishop whose manner of life challenges the wider church and leads to further strains on Communion.”  But first they will check to see if pigs fly…..

Time to start talking to an REC or AMiA bishop, I think.

[8] Posted by AnglicanXn on 02-15-2007 at 11:24 AM • top

Garbage.  I, too, am learning to cross myself in the opposite direction.  Expecting this cowardice, I have already made it a practice to omit the filioque.

[9] Posted by Phil on 02-15-2007 at 11:25 AM • top

They truly do not understand (or do, and don’t care about) the complicity of TEC (815) in the few things they are willing to admit are wrong (mainly the blessing of SSUs).  And, even in admitting that there is a “problem” with Bishops who thumbed their noses at B033 and the AC, the “solution” is to kick it back to…the HOB?????

The “expansion” of the criteria for “restraint” seems an endorsement of the attack on Mark Lawrence.

This is the sad fudge that many dreaded.

And, this shows how we got played by looking too much at LGBT in and of itself.  Nothing is being addressed about the denial of Scripture’s place in the life of the church or the elimination of Christ’s cross from TEC.

[10] Posted by Timothy Fountain on 02-15-2007 at 11:26 AM • top

All in all, a dreadful report by the subcommittee.

Just to parse one teensy paragraph of it—and I think probably the best paragraph in the lot:

“It is therefore not at all clear whether, in fact, the Episcopal Church is living with the recommendations of the Windsor Report on this matter [of same sex blessings]. The primates in their statement of March 2003 did admit that there could be “a breadth of private response to individual pastoral care”, but it is clear that the authorisation by any one bishop, diocese or Province, of any public Rite of Blessing, or permission to develop or use such a rite, would go against the standard of teaching to which the Communion as a whole has indicated that it is bound. We do not see how bishops who continue to act in a way which diverges from the common life of the Communion can be fully incorporated into its ongoing life. This is therefore a question which needs to be addressed urgently by the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church.”

It is quite clear.  The General Convention of 2003 authorized same sex blessings as “within the bounds of our common life.”  Our current PB bustled straight back to her diocese and duly authorized them.

General Convention of 2006 refused to enact a moratorium on them and the defeat of resolutions further codifying the already-approved actions of same-sex blessings does not a moratorium enact.  It merely means that they did not approve resolutions further codifying same sex blessings.

No, the HOB does *not* need to “urgently” address the matter of already-approved same sex blessings.  Why?

Because the General Convention did so in 2003 and the HOB will continue to enact as they see fit what GC2003 enacted.  GC 2006 was the time to address this—remember, we stated over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over that we could only address the Windsor Report requests at our highest legislative body.  The HOB has consistently washed their hands of any responsibility for requests of the WR.

That one paragraph is the strongest of the log.

What a disgraceful report.  A denial of the very clear results of the 2006 General Convention.  I am embarrassed for all of the participants in this sham and scam of a report.

This is a very serious setback, in my opinion.  If the Primates are not willing to accept clear actions on the part of the highest legislative body of the Episcopal church, then there will certainly be no “discipline”.

[11] Posted by Sarah on 02-15-2007 at 11:29 AM • top

It’s important to remember that this report has been circulating among the primates for days, and that it is not the final statement on matters. Undoubtedly it has influenced what we’ve seen, but let’s try to evauluate it in its proper scope.

[12] Posted by Greg Griffith on 02-15-2007 at 11:31 AM • top

Milquetoast [ mílk tst ] - noun.  somebody regarded as timid or submissive, especially a man. 

I realize that this report was prepared by a group, not a man, but it certainly reminds me of this definition.

[13] Posted by anglicanhopeful on 02-15-2007 at 11:32 AM • top

Let’s pray the Primates throw this report in the circular file where it belongs.

[14] Posted by Newbie Anglican on 02-15-2007 at 11:32 AM • top

RE: “. . . this was produced by the ACC, and so not too much of a surprise.”

No, this was as I understand it, produced by the “advisory group” that was supposed to monitor response to the WR.

The members are:
The Archbishop of Canterbury
The Archbishop of Central Africa
The Archbishop of Wales
Chancellor Philippa Amable, Province of West Africa
Canon Elizabeth Paver, Church of England
The Secretary-General

My curiosity is . . . who in heaven’s name would the Archbishop of Central Africa allow his name to be applied to this terrible lie of a report?  Why?

Why not instead issue a minority report, stating that he cannot agree with the majority report.

I am appalled.

[15] Posted by Sarah on 02-15-2007 at 11:34 AM • top

and one more thing; throwing the issue back to TEC’s HOB accomplishes nothing; remember, nothing can be done in TEC’s polity outside of General Convention.  GC has answered, so there is no need for any othe response.

[16] Posted by anglicanhopeful on 02-15-2007 at 11:35 AM • top

“We have to express our concern that other recommendations of the Windsor Report, addressed to other parts of the Communion, appear to have been ignored so far.”

Does anyone else read this as reference to ‘boundary crossings’?

[17] Posted by Andy W. on 02-15-2007 at 11:35 AM • top

Out of three issues related to this whole mess, this report finds TE"C” in full compliance with the wishes of the broader communion on two, and argues the evidence regarding the third is too scanty as of yet to make the call.

.333 is pretty good in baseball, but pretty awful everywhere else.

[18] Posted by High Church Methodist on 02-15-2007 at 11:36 AM • top

Ugh.  Where to start?  This is not at all encouraging.

[19] Posted by Nyssa on 02-15-2007 at 11:37 AM • top

Andy W.:

Yes, it is pretty clearly about boundary crossing…

[20] Posted by James Manley on 02-15-2007 at 11:38 AM • top

Anybody pinning their hope on +Canterbury distressed by the fact he has signed off on this?

[21] Posted by High Church Methodist on 02-15-2007 at 11:39 AM • top

Archbishop Malango most definitely is obligated to offer an explanation for the farcical document we are reading here.

[22] Posted by Anglican Observer on 02-15-2007 at 11:41 AM • top

I am with Sarah here.  After their tortured efforts of portraying GC06’s raised middle finger as really being a thumbs up, this report goes on to say “We have to express our concern that other recommendations of the Windsor Report, addressed to other parts of the Communion, appear to have been ignored so far.”  Poor, poor TEC.  Of course, the rest of the Communion is to be held literally to the Windsor Report, but because the TEC said “awwww, we really do like the Anglican Communion” before ignoring the WR, they get a pass.
I mean, this trash could have been written by Father Jake or Susan Russell.
Either the primates need to start dealing with reality, or Anglicanism is dead.  Dead because it will have zero credibility.  If this report is the final word, it would have been better if the primates had simply had a videoconference in which each shrugged into the camera and said “TEC’s response to Windsor?  Whatever!”  and then went on their merry way.

[23] Posted by jamesw on 02-15-2007 at 11:41 AM • top

I am leaving to have lunch with my daughter at her elementary school.  During the drive will again attempt to invoke the patience Holy Scripture urges on us.  I know that the Risen Lord is in even this process and take great comfort in His presence.

Blessings everyone, Andy

[24] Posted by Andy W. on 02-15-2007 at 11:42 AM • top

Sarah is right: “sham and scam”.  This crosses over from fudge (being wishy washy) into complicity with apostasy and evil.

[25] Posted by Timothy Fountain on 02-15-2007 at 11:43 AM • top

It keeps going from bad to worse….what I been feeling in my gut for weeks, for months is now unraveling before my eyes.

Did anyone catch the real “money statement”?  Here it is.
“We have to express our concern that other recommendations of the Windsor Report, addressed to other parts of the Communion, appear to have been ignored so far.”

Read:  crossing juridiction boundaries.

The remaining orthodox in the TEC are sc***ed, period.  Rowan Williams has made his loyalties abundantly clear and I just don’t see how they are with our Lord.  I have been hopeless for the orthodox cause in TEC even since his letter stating that he would invite KJS to Dar Es Salaam.  Such a gentleman, giving her this transformed figleaf to hide behind.

I wondering even more about that statement on VOL that no Primate is allowed to move without an ACC handler by his side.  It is now my fervent prayer that ++Akinola and the other primates of the GS will stand behind the intentions as articulated in The Road to Lambeth.  But why wait until ‘08?  It’s time for the AC to be split apart.

[26] Posted by Gayle on 02-15-2007 at 11:48 AM • top

The parrot is still dead.

bb

[27] Posted by BabyBlue on 02-15-2007 at 11:49 AM • top

Canon Kearon’s (of the Anglican Consultative Council) fingerprints are all over this document.  Rmember Canon Kearon - Louis Crew’s emailing buddy? 

Why ABC and Archbishop of C. Africa’s signatures are also on this document is beyond me.  They both have some ‘xplainin to do’.

[28] Posted by anglicanhopeful on 02-15-2007 at 11:50 AM • top

jamesw,

After all, in Europe and the Middle East, the ‘thumbs up’ equals the ‘one finger slaute’.

[29] Posted by Fr. Chip, SF on 02-15-2007 at 11:51 AM • top

Re: “We do not see how bishops who continue to act in a way which diverges from the common life of the Communion can be fully incorporated into its ongoing life. “

If you walk across a mine field and only step on one of the mines, it is not much consolation that you missed all the others.  I interpret the above sentence to indicate that bishops who authorize blessings will not be participating in the Communion and they, individually, have to decide this “urgently”.  Being a bishop in good standing in ECUSA is no longer good enough by itself.

The rest of the report is utter rubbish, but it was undoubtedly drafted by the ACO.  If loss of ECUSA money means shutting down this office, that’s not a bug, that’s a feature.

[30] Posted by wildfire on 02-15-2007 at 11:52 AM • top

Gayle, I am with you. This clinches it. The Episcopal Church seems like a bad dream to me. But I am awake and the sun is shining, and there are Christian churches in the world.

[31] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 11:53 AM • top

I am not happy with point 1; I wrote my Bishop specifically about this in connection with the approval of +Barry Beisner, who presents a challenge on the basis of his marriage history.

However, my Bishop thought that EVERYTHING was just fine, including Point 2.  Clearly the committee did not agree there.  So it isn’t all a wash.  And I think this, at the end, is critical:

“The Group feels that the reality of the change of direction that some see in the resolutions of the General Convention can only be tested however by the way in which the Episcopal Church lives out these resolutions.”

Is it overly optomistic?  Absolutely.  Do I like some of their conclusions?  No.  I wouldn’t consider this the last word, though, until all this is over.

[32] Posted by BCP28 on 02-15-2007 at 11:53 AM • top

If you liked this report, you’re going to LOVE the forthcoming Communion Covenant—more precisely and importantly, the official interpretation of that Covenant, as interpreted by Canterbury and 815—and the assessments of who has, and who has not, complied with that Covenant.

[33] Posted by Africanised Anglican on 02-15-2007 at 11:53 AM • top

I have already heard from one very liberal priest with whom I am still good friends.  In the politest conversation, it amounted to “nah, nah nah nah, nah!  I told you so!!”

I hope that there is sufficient resolve, and votes, among the Primates to declare this report Dead on Arrival.  It is just too preposterous to take seriously.  Of course, even if they do, we Reasserters will be hearing about this “proof” of TEC faithfulness for decades, no matter what happens.

[34] Posted by APB on 02-15-2007 at 11:54 AM • top

The very fact that more than 30 TEC bishops have already explicitly refused to abide by B033’s vague, toothless provisions gives the lie to those who say it has responded substantively to the WR.  Not even the hint of discipline hangs over them for their defiance.

The idea that broadening the definition to “manner of life” strengthens the language is similarly ludicrous, insofar as it only opens a hole one can drive a Mack truck through in defining who the Resolution is aimed at.  It allows John Chane to ordain open, practicing homosexuals while crushing the orthodox by permitting him to define what the scope of the “wider communion” is.

Every word of this whitewash is a lie, including “and” and “the.”

[35] Posted by Jeffersonian on 02-15-2007 at 11:56 AM • top

The best part: “The Group feels that the reality of the change of direction that some see in the resolutions of the General Convention can only be tested however by the way in which the Episcopal Church lives out these resolutions.”

Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice…

[36] Posted by Widening Gyre on 02-15-2007 at 11:58 AM • top

This is really getting interesting.  No surprises so far.  Much of the support here on out must come from mutual orthodox leadership from NA and the GS.  If North America does not support its brothers in the GS the fat lady is screaming.

[37] Posted by Lee Parker on 02-15-2007 at 11:59 AM • top

General Convention as a whole did not therefore specifically consider the question of a possible moratorium on same-sex unions.

Wow.  This is true in its extremely precise and lawyerly wording, but it doesn’t explain what really happened:

The House of Deputies actively rejected a moratorium on same-sex unions.  This prevented the House of Bishops from considering the resolution that failed, although the House of Bishops could have considered their own version if they had wanted to.

[38] Posted by Randy Muller on 02-15-2007 at 12:01 PM • top

How entirely disheartening.  Not the last word, however.  The representatives of 70% of Anglicans fiercely disagree with most of this.  Have faith and stand firm - the Lord does work in mysterious ways and not according to our own preferences and timetables.

[39] Posted by this_day on 02-15-2007 at 12:02 PM • top

Mothers,
Take your children out of the choir and Sunday school and away from being acolytes.  No more Bible study or confirmation in the Episcopal Church.  You might consider taking yourself out of TEC and going to the REC, APA, CANA, AMiA or an Eastern or Western Orthodox church where they teach the Good News of salvation through Jesus’ shed blood.  Read your Bible and swell the numbers in those churches.

[40] Posted by Mother on 02-15-2007 at 12:02 PM • top

Oh Happy Day!

Looks like the reasserters have been crushed…again!  Ah, but fear not-they have an incalculable tolerance for abuse.  This reads like a complete deconstruction of Matt+‘s three-part argument for discipline.  AND it was signed off on by the ABC and a GS Archbishop!

Well, post away my reasserting friends.  I look forward to your gleeful spin on why this document does not matter!

[41] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 12:05 PM • top

ladies, gentlemen,

This is bad…very bad. But nothing is decided. This is a report made to the primates…a report they can accept or reject. Let’s not panic but pray. I do believe Canterbury based Anglicanism is at stake.

[42] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 02-15-2007 at 12:06 PM • top

Is it not therefore good that our foundations are on Christ?

Not on Anglican reports (heaven help us), Global South bishops, the ABC or anything but Christ alone.

This will play out as it will.  We, however, are called to stand in Christ.  He hasn’t dropped the ball, and isn’t bound by things of men.

Hmm, I know this is basic stuff, but my 2p anyway.  Let’s just pray.

[43] Posted by Peter on 02-15-2007 at 12:06 PM • top

Brian, maybe you can explain why reappraisers have been doing all the whining and sniveling for several weeks now? What will you do if you can’t continue to paint yourselves as poor little victims?

I’m sorry there is no charity in this post but I see none in yours. We can repent together. In separate churches.

[44] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 12:07 PM • top

+Canterbury must recognize the fact that he is responsible to ALL Anglicans in the communion, religious and lay alike, at take a positive stand on this issue. Sidestepping it is noit an option. Many Anglicans, world-wide, look to his spiritual leadership for direction and it it his responsibility to “tend to his flock”. At this cruicial time in our church history, “signing off” is not an option available to him. The membership of the communion are entitled to his guidance.

[45] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:07 PM • top

This report is a masterpiece of obfuscation. It is shameful that leaders of a Christian church cannot simply state where they stand on important issues of faith, authority, and morality. Jamesw, I must disagree with the latter part of your statement that “this trash could have been written by Father Jake or Susan Russell”. We do know where Fr. Jake and Susan Russell stand. They at least will take a position and stick to it.

[46] Posted by Peter M. Vermigli on 02-15-2007 at 12:07 PM • top

Yes, this is just an opening salvo, much like the two province idea was an opening salvo.  There are, however, several points of concern which should be very troubling.
1. Malango and the ABC apparently signed off on this report.  If Malango truly believes this nonsense, then there is no hope that a majority of the primates will back discipline.  If the ABC truly believes this nonsense, then there is no hope for the AC’s long term future.
2. Regardless of the outcome of the Primate’s meeting, UNLESS KJS can be made to agree to some sort of compromise deal, this report will provide TEC’s liberals with the rationale they need to spin any discipline as unAnglican and the result of an illegitimate power grab by the GSTEC’s liberals WILL point to this report and say “see, the nonpartisan working group said that GC06 did meet Windsor, but it was really the GS that didn’t.”
3. If there is only a weak compromise masquerading as discipline, this report will give TEC the green light to move full speed ahead with its agenda regardless of the WR.
Basically TEC spit in the face of the AC and the Primates.  KJS has been about as “in your face aggressive” as she possibly can be over the last couple months.  If TEC sees that despite all that, they will face no real discipline, you can be sure that any restraint against approving gay bishops will be gone.

[47] Posted by jamesw on 02-15-2007 at 12:08 PM • top

There are many elements of the Episcopal Church who share that commitment, who wish to abide within the full recommendations of the Windsor Report and still remain committed to the life of the Episcopal Church.  It is the duty of the wider Communion to nourish and encourage all those within the Episcopal Church who wish to embrace our common and interdependent life.

A glimmer of hope.  Even this can be seen as a justification for forming a second American province.

[48] Posted by this_day on 02-15-2007 at 12:08 PM • top

Can someone explain please the force of this communique by the subgroup?  Has it been accepted as it stands by the Primates, or only presented to them?  I note with great sadness that Archbishop Malango, who was so clear in his correction of Frank Griswold in 2003, is one of the architects.  Another case of wool over the eyes?
Sadly,
Edith M. Humphrey

[49] Posted by Edith on 02-15-2007 at 12:10 PM • top

Listen to Matt folks.  We’re in the first quarter.  Take a deep breath!

[50] Posted by Lee Parker on 02-15-2007 at 12:10 PM • top

What will you do if you can’t continue to paint yourselves as poor little victims?

I am no victim.  I have joined in the choices all along the way.  Should it turn out that TEC is no longer in full communion with Canterbury, I will be sad.

[51] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 12:15 PM • top

Yes, WG, and we have been fooled about fifty times over the years.  So shame on us if we remain complicit with this.

[52] Posted by Phil on 02-15-2007 at 12:17 PM • top

Edith, my understanding is that this report has only been presented to the Primates Meeting.
As Matt said, this report is NOT the final word, so you all don’t burn your confirmation prayer books just yet.

[53] Posted by Newbie Anglican on 02-15-2007 at 12:17 PM • top

++Williams and ++Malango certainly have some explaining to do for this!  If this report carries any weight whatsoever, the Anglican Communion just died.  Yet, I am reminded, this is only a report by very few.  We must still wait to see what the primates as a whole decide.

Still Waiting and still Praying for God’s glory to be revealed…

[54] Posted by Spencer on 02-15-2007 at 12:18 PM • top

Moose

The membership of the communion are entitled to his guidance.

This has been a singular problem with this ABC.  As I have said many times before, ++Rowan sees himself as a negotiator rather than a moral leader.  If he continues in this role, he will be remembered by both sides as the Neville Chamberlain of ABCs

[55] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 12:18 PM • top

Lee, I think we all are taking a deep breath!!

[56] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:20 PM • top

Before everyone gets their underwear in knots, why don’t we continue to pray for a godly outcome from the primates?

[57] Posted by Tony on 02-15-2007 at 12:21 PM • top

This report is a disaster. It reminds me of the old UN Human Rights Commission reports lauding the Soviet Union’s human rights record.

I suppose it is too cynical to hope that the ABC permitted this report to be delivered as a device to give TEC its “day in court” in the expectation that the report would be rejected. It is heartbreaking to think that the ABC actually believes what the report says. The only positive feature is that the report is only a report. The Primates have not approved it, yet.
I am trying not to give in to despair…

[58] Posted by Publius on 02-15-2007 at 12:22 PM • top

Fellow Episcopalians,
What a sad report this is.  That is just proof there needs to be a new
province in this country. period.  It is time to bury the old dead horse.
period.
In His Service,
Bp. Gryffin Reid, [retired]
[Chip Johnson I would like to know more bout your calling to the priesthod in this Company of Jesus.  If you can tell me more about them. Email me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)]

[59] Posted by The Padre on 02-15-2007 at 12:23 PM • top

Edith,

The ball is still in play

[60] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 02-15-2007 at 12:24 PM • top

Thank you, +Matt!

[61] Posted by this_day on 02-15-2007 at 12:26 PM • top

‘There was clearly a strong groundswell within the General Convention to walk more closely with the Communion and in the commitment to a common life.’

This is such teetotal baloney. Can I have some mustard with that? The only thing GC demonstrated was the determination of TEC to do it’s Own Thing no matter what or who.

[62] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 12:27 PM • top

C’mon folks this is not surprising.  It actually looks like greater clarity to me.  It also looks like more will happen here than on the road to Lambeth.  It looks like a great battle is brewing.

[63] Posted by Lee Parker on 02-15-2007 at 12:27 PM • top

Why do you think so, Lee?

[64] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 12:28 PM • top

Don’t you think that this will force ABC to take a stand??

[65] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:30 PM • top

It seems to me that the Global South Primates, if they believe ++Rowan Williams agrees with this report, will come to see themselves all along as being right regarding the possible need for a new truly Biblically based, orthodox communion beyond western liberalism’s influence and reach. Too many of them have had ongoing and direct contact with conditions in the USA to be anything but outraged by this whitewashed con called a report.

[66] Posted by David+ on 02-15-2007 at 12:30 PM • top

I find this all very interesting.  The report does a good job of presenting the actions of GC2006 as many within TEC would like them to be characterized.  It does so gracefully and well.  This is the precise argument that the Primates need to address from within the framework of Windsor.  If they do as I expect they will, reapraisers within TEC will not be able to argue that they were not listened to.  Not when +++Williams hand carried their message for them.

[67] Posted by Ed McNeill on 02-15-2007 at 12:30 PM • top

Actually, Lee, by now we certainly have to be at the two-minute warning.

However, I agree with this_day that this doesn’t preclude a second North American province.  While I’ve held out hope for that, I’ve never believed ECUSA would be kicked out (yet), and, in that sense, this report is consistent with keeping ECUSA in.

But look, 815 has embarked on a scorched-earth strategy to hunt down and kill off any serious orthodox Anglicans remaining in ECUSA.  They are trying to financially ruin lay volunteers, for goodness sake - throw them out of their houses, take food off of the table and keep their kids out of college.  Gene Robinson can be consecrated, but Mark Lawrence can’t.  The presentments against +Duncan and +Iker are in a folder awaiting Tanzania’s conclusion.  If the ACC and the Primates can’t or won’t see that and do something to help, then they are de facto telling faithful Episcopalians to get the hell out and don’t let the door hit you in the back as you leave.  And I will hear them, loud and clear.

To see people who hold fast to the Faith as it has been understood by Anglicanism for 450 years be the ones thrown out of the “church” is going through the looking glass into a world of nihilism.

[68] Posted by Phil on 02-15-2007 at 12:31 PM • top

oscewicee

I’m sorry there is no charity in this post but I see none in yours. We can repent together. In separate churches.

No offense taken.  Actually, I normally post over on T19 and there was a time immediately after GenCon06 that I believe4d we reappraisers were done for.  There was no question that we had not met Windsor.  Then a miraculous event came along and saved us: The Meeting of the Global South Primates.  That meeting was the death knell for the reasserter cause.  ++Akinola once again released a document that not everyone agreed with.  He once again threatened the AC and the ABC.  Now the ABC and the rest of the GS are having to ask themselves: “What is better?”  The answer, ironically (as it is the VA. state motto), is Sic semper tyrannis

[69] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 12:33 PM • top

Yes, but, Mr. McNeill, isn’t this report the considered deliberation of the given subcommittee?  Did the names on the bottom line merely believe this is as fair and accurate a summation of TE"C”‘s position as can be made, or are these the conclusions of the persons involved in writing this ... thing ... up?

[70] Posted by High Church Methodist on 02-15-2007 at 12:34 PM • top

Thank you for agreeing to what is so obviously true, Brian - that GC06 in no way met the Windsor requirements.That this subcommittee “finds” that it did tells us a lot more about the subcommittee and, probably, the state of the church as a whole, than I had expected. For the record, I have never pinned my hopes to ++Akinola. He seems, now, to be the only answer we orthodox are left with if we choose to stay in the church. Do you feel good that TEC has provided us with no other choices?

[71] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 12:37 PM • top

This is the saddest day in this entire 3 and a half year ordeal.  All along it has been clear that to avoid serious theological and ecclesiological scandal the ABC was going to have to find his voice and actually speak with moral authority.  His primary opportunity he has now wasted and it looks like the AC is the nearly complete sham of a church I had feared it to be.  If the ABC had given Spong the “Good and Faithful Servant Award,” a golden calf trophy and a kiss on the cheek, it would hardly be more scandalous.

[72] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 12:40 PM • top

Windsor was a compromise that was made better via Dromantine but still was big enough to drive a truck through.  “Windsor compliance” was never worth this fight.  Faithfulness is.

The Archbishop of Central Africa’s signature on this is a huge setback no matter how you shake it up.  It gives TEC an important public relations win even if the GS rejects the report and does something drastic.  Its critisism of cross-jurisdictional interventions will also be cited repeatedly in the future.

The report also underscores the bankrupt “covenant” strategy.

The Lord God may very well not give the orthodox a political win in this instance. For those whose church life hinges on whether or not they sway the Arcbhishop of Canterbury, this must be difficult.

[73] Posted by Going Home on 02-15-2007 at 12:40 PM • top

Oscewicee, it is only my understanding of human nature but this report is so ambiguous it provides for clarity.  My explanation.  What it says is that we say to you in a very condescending manner that we side with ECUSA.  After all we have witnessed I do not see how the GS can leave this meeting with anything less than a second province (I am surprised by this).  Much of the discipline portion will be up to the NA orthodox.  Repeatedly, Bishop Duncan   et al have said they are staying.  If this meeting continues down this path I am not so sure that he can hold to this.  We will see.

[74] Posted by Lee Parker on 02-15-2007 at 12:43 PM • top

Right, so we should all expect a kairos moment tomorrow when the primates vote in quick succession to rejct the report, toss Schori, and toss Sentamu?

I suppose it will all be endless drivel about the MDGs for the rest of the meeting. I don’t know how those poor guys will stay awake.

[75] Posted by henryleroi on 02-15-2007 at 12:44 PM • top

Lee, thank you for your clarification. I too wonder what Bishop Duncan will do if this document is accepted.

henryleroi - for many at this meeting the MDG are probably life and death issues. And I don’t mean for TEC.

[76] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 12:46 PM • top

Forgive my ignorance, but are the ABC and Malango actually signatories to the report, or simply members of the committee which produced it?

[77] Posted by James Manley on 02-15-2007 at 12:46 PM • top

fudge fudge fudge FUDGE

FUDGEfudgeFUDGEfudgeFUDGEfudgeFUDGEfudge

repeat as needed

the snarkster

[78] Posted by the snarkster on 02-15-2007 at 12:48 PM • top

I think that the outcome of this meeting will determine, to many, the direction of their future religious life on a permanent basis. I am not optomistic for a positve outcome.

[79] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:48 PM • top

It is correct to note that (a) this is a report from a subcommittee to the greater body of primates - we will see how it is received; (b) the subcommittee included considerable (in non-representative proportions) diversity - we do not know what standard was used for the group to make its conclusions within this document; and (c) events over the last six months have provided additional clarity. 

That said, IMHO, it appears that group’s consideration of TEC’s rejection of the moratorium on consecrations was wrongly de-railed.  Note the improper weight given to TEC’s legal advice and the naive (wishful?) interpretation of wording.  The impression is that this resolution was the only way they could implement it legally.  With respect to expressions of regret, I noted the following inclonclusive statement: “The group was unsure how these words should be understood.” 

At any rate, I do not think this report is of great significance, aside from possibly creating a starting point for discussion.  BTW, here is a quote from Malango:

Central African Archbishop Bernard Malango, who was on the Lambeth Commission that produced the Windsor Report, was also among those appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury to consider the results of the Episcopal Church’s 2006 General Convention and make recommendations. Noting that that panel of so called “wise men” was comprised of both conservatives and liberals, he said, “It wasn’t easy to advise Rowan (Williams) but we did, and next month we are going to hear what we discussed and commended it to him. Whether the Anglican Communion will change or be the same, I am not going to discuss.” He observed, though, that “Our brothers and sisters in America know how to play with words. They say a different thing, but what do they mean?”

From a VOL interview.

[80] Posted by tired on 02-15-2007 at 12:49 PM • top

oscewicee -

The subcommittee has not agreed that ECUSA and GC06 have met Windsor requirements:

There are dioceses in which progress towards the development of a public Rite of Blessing for same-sex unions has been initiated[8] ; other dioceses where, while there is no standard rite, guidelines have been issued by the bishop giving circumstances in which it may be permitted for priests of the diocese to offer such blessings[9] .  In other dioceses, permission has been given for the development of rites which cover a wide range of circumstances, but which could include circumstances where a same-sex couple were seeking a blessing on their relationship[10]
. . .

it is clear that the authorisation by any one bishop, diocese or Province, of any public Rite of Blessing, or permission to develop or use such a rite, would go against the standard of teaching to which the Communion as a whole has indicated that it is bound.  We do not see how bishops who continue to act in a way which diverges from the common life of the Communion can be fully incorporated into its ongoing life.

[81] Posted by this_day on 02-15-2007 at 12:52 PM • top

oscewicee, the MDGs were a sop proposed by the UN. There’s no power on earth that can achieve them.

[82] Posted by henryleroi on 02-15-2007 at 12:53 PM • top

If this is to be a united Anglican Communion, then we have to agree on the principles by which is to be managed. It doesn’t seem to be any closer to a solution than it was pre-GC06. Solutions? Not on the horizon, to me…

[83] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:56 PM • top

Archbishop Malango:  ” ... and NEXT MONTH we are going to hear what we discussed and commended it to him.”

Caps added for emphasis.

Is that Brian from T19 I hear snickering?  There will ALWAYS be a next month ... tomorrow never comes.

[84] Posted by High Church Methodist on 02-15-2007 at 12:56 PM • top

Have ordinations of non-celibates stopped?
Have same-sex marriages stopped?
Has TEC apologized for what it did, or merely for how it made others feel?
Pretty simple questions.  Pretty simple answers.  No twenty page report needed.

[85] Posted by Rick Killough on 02-15-2007 at 12:56 PM • top

Nicely said, Rick!

[86] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:57 PM • top

I seem to remember discussion from a long time ago, about how far God might go in pruning back the church, or in letting it tear itself down, before something new, orthodox and strong emerged.  This seems like sad news to me, too…but let’s not kid ourselves.  The problem goes much, much deeper than TEC/ECUSA.  Perhaps what we all thought/wished would happen was just going to be a band-aid on a gaping wound.  Perhaps this is major surgery we are getting ready to face…

Something’s coming, friends, God is at work in all of this….and it’s going to be a lot bigger than we ever thought….  Keep praying, keep holding fast to the Truth, and keep watching.

[87] Posted by Liz Forman on 02-15-2007 at 12:58 PM • top

Besides a few Virginians with the courage of their convictions and some South Africans who have none, the AC can now very beautifully break along racial and economic lines.  So how does the ABC’s spineless waffling serve the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

A curious Catholic wants to know.

Jason
Notre Dame, Indiana

[88] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 12:59 PM • top

And keep praying, Liz!!!

[89] Posted by moose92069 on 02-15-2007 at 12:59 PM • top

A fresh report from press conference in Tanzania here:

http://www.peter-ould.net/?p=275

[90] Posted by James Manley on 02-15-2007 at 01:03 PM • top

Oscewicee

Do you feel good that TEC has provided us with no other choices?

That’s a difficult question to answer.  Of course I feel bad that you and so many others find yourself in pain and unable to continue in TEC.  My problem is that TEC is only being passive and should not shoulder the blame.  We have been up front about every theological/canonical move in the past 30 years.  We have done them all in public and with the consent of GC or the appropriate ecclesiastical authorities.  Beginning with the Chapman Letter (http://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/ss/archives/000405.html) and continuing through +Duncan’s third request for APO, the orthodox have worked in the dark to subvert the process.  You were always free to go and you are, of course, more than welcome to stay.  The only thing we have asked is that, if you must go, you do not steal our property.

[91] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 01:04 PM • top

It’s 1:05pm here on the East Coast….Why don’t we all join together over the next hour and lift our prayers as a group over the rest of the meeting?  Wherever two or three are gathered together…even if hooked up through the Intenet!

[92] Posted by Liz Forman on 02-15-2007 at 01:04 PM • top

The bar in the WR was set low to begin with…  truth be told, to say “we’re sorry you were offended” was what was asked of ECUSA. Apparenty that is good enough for the primates sub-committee as well.  Given that Schori was seated and Orombi and Akinola did not depart does not bode well. Reminds me of Star Trek and the Borg… and begs the question is there a “Number 1” who is a better chess player than Locutus?

[93] Posted by Festivus on 02-15-2007 at 01:05 PM • top
[94] Posted by James Manley on 02-15-2007 at 01:07 PM • top

With all due respect to many, including Matt, I believe the fix was in a long time ago.  I am with Peter on this matter even in my feelings of anger and betrayal.  Our foundation must always be on Christ and the moment we confuse The Church with the AC we lose that focus on our foundation being on Christ.

The bitter pill I’m having to swallow is my hope that the GS primates would live up to their word as expressed in the Kigali communique and in The Road to Lambeth.  Check out Peter Ould’s report and you will find that both Schori and Sentamu were seated without any dispute.  I don’t understand how these men could allow that to happen, how can they sit across from a person who has refuted basic Christian doctrine?  They have expressed concern about that very issue, but when push comes to shove she is seated among them without even a “by your leave”.  Can anyone explain that?

And why are they permitting themselves to be handled by the ACC?  Check out the thread from Drell, it has been confirmed.  Looks like VOL has been getting a few things right of late.

Congratulations Brian and all the other reappraisers, you “won”.  But I walked with my feet weeks ago and at least I won’t be giving another thin dime to any TEC church.  I now find myself grateful that I am not giving to the AC either.

[95] Posted by Gayle on 02-15-2007 at 01:10 PM • top

What a sad and pathetic and cowardly report. Its writer(s) apparently took no time to verify the facts as they have been and are in the Episcopal Church.

The explanation for this is Cantuar’s reluctance to do nothing except keep stalling for time. The fact that Kenneth Kearon is one to whom the report was submitted also helps explain its content. Perhaps someone could helpus understand why the the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion apparently stands as equal in rank to the Archbishop of Catnerbury and one to whom an accounting must be given about discerning the response of the Anglican Communion to the decisions of the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church. Canon Kearon has already demonstrated his contempt for the Archbishop and his views, and has certainly given every evidence that he has little or no regard for the opinions of the Global South. Since when does the Secretary-General (what an impressive and officious title) possess such authority? And on what basis?

[96] Posted by Dan Crawford on 02-15-2007 at 01:11 PM • top

While liberal, these reports are worth a look…

The short answer is that ECUSA made two out of three benchmarks. On the subject of the moratorium on consecration of gay & lesbian persons as bishops, ECUSA passed. There was reservation (and implication of failure) on the subject of public rites of same-sex blessings. Finally, the “expression of regret” passed at GC in Columbus last summer was judged to have passed muster.

http://inclusivechurch.blogspot.com/index.html

[97] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 01:11 PM • top

I’m sure that the wisdom of this report will become clear with time.  I mean this wasn’t written by dummies!  Even the African bishop signed off on it and we’d been told to expect some sort of bloc action on the part of the Africans which would have been a shame.  I’ve always found that the things which bother me the most become clear once I’ve had a second look at them.  Be of good cheer - the meeting could actually work out well now.  I don’t know why everyone is so upset. 
RR

[98] Posted by Raspberry Rabbit on 02-15-2007 at 01:14 PM • top

Already praying,thanks for the reminder Liz.
brian,here’s a little something you might consider,Psalm 59:7-11.

[99] Posted by paddy on 02-15-2007 at 01:14 PM • top

Thanks for the link, Mr. Manley.  I recommend all read it ... Rev. Harmon is sounding VERY pessimistic at this point.

[100] Posted by High Church Methodist on 02-15-2007 at 01:15 PM • top

Brian,

Thaks for the link to the Chapman Report

[101] Posted by Fr. Chip, SF on 02-15-2007 at 01:18 PM • top

This report is nauseating, to say the least, and I can just imagine my bishop’s reaction to it.  Will San Joaquin eventually walk, based on what this report suggests?  Who knows?  I wouldn’t care to bet against such a possibility.

[102] Posted by Cennydd on 02-15-2007 at 01:19 PM • top

Be of good cheer - the meeting could actually work out well now.  I don’t know why everyone is so upset. 

Yikes, RR, what are you smoking?  The ECUSA is being given a pass even as it did not expressly admit to anywrongdoing and has done nothing to stop gay union blessings, which currently are in use even for gay clergy.

The Anglican Communion has now given the green light to every error known to Christian history from error (KJS et al) to apostacy (Spong).  You cant go on as a Christian body if you in fact stand for nothing,  Period.

[103] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 01:22 PM • top

There is a saying we have here in the Deep South - goes like this: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” I’ve read the sub-committee report more than 3 times. I have to ask if the Primates have not been fooled twice?

[104] Posted by Festivus on 02-15-2007 at 01:26 PM • top

In my opinion, a good deal of this pessimism is premature.  Yes, the report is a flub, but it very clearly bears the stamp of the ACC liberals.  Do we actually think that the GS primates don’t realize that?  Or that they’ll stand for it?

Recall that this isn’t the only view of the Episcopal Church that the primates have had today.  Bishops Duncan and MacPherson both have made their presentations and answered questions, and we can be sure that they’ve spoken their minds.  They have the sympathy not only of the GS primates but also of the C of E.  Don’t forget the “pruning” statements made last week by +Wright and +Scott-Joynt, both close allies of ++Williams. 

Canon Kearon’s spin isn’t even believed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, let alone the GS primates.  Why are we letting ourselves be taken in by it?  Let’s wait for what the primates say.  It’ll almost certainly be much different from the subcommittee’s report.

[105] Posted by Jordan Hylden on 02-15-2007 at 01:31 PM • top

Snarkster, in the 60s there was brand of cookies called “Fudge Town” and the TV commercial for them had a bouncy little jingle with the following lyric:

Fudge, fudge, wonderful fudge;
So much fudge in Fudge Town,
We can hardly budge!

Clearly, with the release of that report, Fudge Town cookies need to be revived, to be served at coffee hours in all remaining Episcopal churches.

[106] Posted by Anthony in NYC on 02-15-2007 at 01:32 PM • top

Sounding optimistic or pessimistic is not the issue.  The question is: is it true?  This report is dangerous and unhelpful because it is not true.

[107] Posted by Kendall Harmon on 02-15-2007 at 01:39 PM • top

Does anyone know whether a minority opinion was allowed for during this process of “advising” the ABC? Seems to me that Archbishop Malango was outgunned as the lone orthodox member of this commission, although I do not know much about the representative from West Africa. Seems I read somewhere that this person was somewhat liberal.

If no minority opinion was allowed, then this is the result of a majority vote. The wording of this report sounds like it came straight out of the Anglican Communion Office, headed by Canon Kearon. We all know where he stands on things.

This is a bitterly disappointing document. It is obvious that the group performed marvelous contortions to give TEC a pass on “Windsor compliance.” They should be ashamed!

[108] Posted by Allen Lewis on 02-15-2007 at 01:40 PM • top

A quick reminder - bodies act, subcommittees report.

Options now? In short, the body of primates can (a) accept the report as is; (b) reject the report as is; (c) file without comment; (d) accept part/reject part; (e) return it to committe; etc.  Nothing is judged as meeting any “benchmark” or passing “muster” until the primates as a body act.

Kendall Harmon’s pessimism appears to be that this report starts the discussion at a point that is distant from reality - IMHO, the GS will have to argue for reality prior to getting to a discussion of the appropriate response - hence, the increased likelihood of schism.

(FYI HCM - Malango’s comments were made last month in reference to this meeting.)

[109] Posted by tired on 02-15-2007 at 01:42 PM • top

[deleted - admin]

[110] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 01:42 PM • top

The comments concerning practicing crossing oneself in the opposite direction and leaving off the filioque encouraged me to take to my keyboard to encourage all to pray and seek the Lord while He may be found. He will show you how He wants you to worship in Spirit and Truth. In our case, the prayer was answered with the Antiochian Orthodox blessing our family.

From St. Nikon of Optina:
Only with the Lord and in the Lord can you find spiritual peace for yourself. Your tormented soul can only find comfort in the Lord, in repentance and in the correction of your life. With its poison, sin kills the soul of man. The soul is resurrected throught he life-giving action of repentance.

[111] Posted by Margaret in Orthodoxy on 02-15-2007 at 01:46 PM • top

For those who haven’t checked Ruth Gledhill’s blog lately, she has some very good analysis up, as well as some excellent comments from Kendall:

http://timescolumns.typepad.com/gledhill/2007/02/tec_regret_ok_s.html#more

As Dr. Harmon more-or-less notes, the report itself could just as well have been written by Martians as far as accurate description is concerned.  It’s quite awful.  But again, I’m not sure if we need to be as worried as Kendall is.  The entire GS coalition is congenitally suspicious of anything coming out of the ACC office.  They will take this report with several grains of salt.  I somehow don’t imagine that ++Akinola and his friends will be satisfied by Canon Kearon telling them that ECUSA is really OK after all.

I don’t even think that Rowan Williams buys this report.  There’s obviously a good bit of distance between he and the ACC office.  All in all I think we ought to take this report for what it is—another attempt by the ACC to not-so-subtly lead along the GS primates by the tail.  That’s been proven time and again not to work.  It won’t work this time either.

The real concern is not that ++Akinola and company won’t agree to enough discipline.  Rather, the real concern is that they’ll demand so much so soon that they won’t get what they demand, and consequently will set up their own church.  The whooole tenor of what’s been going on recently make this quite clear.  We oughtn’t let the ACC pull the wool over our eyes.

[112] Posted by Jordan Hylden on 02-15-2007 at 01:47 PM • top

No, Jason, were I a member of the Catholic Church, I would be wondering why we are millions of dollars in the red due to payouts over pedophile priests.

“Those who live in glass houses…”

[113] Posted by bigjimintx on 02-15-2007 at 01:48 PM • top

Allen Lewis writes:

Seems to me that Archbishop Malango was outgunned as the lone orthodox member of this commission…

I seem to recall reading that Canon Elizabeth Paver of the Church of England was also a faithful orthodox Christian.

Remember, even Thomas Cramner betrayed the faithful before finding the courage to stand.

[114] Posted by William P. Sulik on 02-15-2007 at 01:50 PM • top

Sounding optimistic or pessimistic is not the issue.  The question is: is it true?  This report is dangerous and unhelpful because it is not true. 

Indeed, Canon Harmon, it reeks of obfuscation and self-deception.  The pessimism is for the prognosis of a Communion where a committee of ostensibly rational men can write such a document and have it approved by the leader of that Communion.  From your vantage point in South Carolina, you can see very well what the fruits of this poisoned tree are up close.

If this report is approved by the Primates, it is the end of the Commuion.  Period.

[115] Posted by Jeffersonian on 02-15-2007 at 01:50 PM • top

Re: “We do not see how bishops who continue to act in a way which diverges from the common life of the Communion can be fully incorporated into its ongoing life. “

If you walk across a mine field and only step on one of the mines, it is not much consolation that you missed all the others.  I interpret the above sentence to indicate that bishops who authorize blessings will not be participating in the Communion and they, individually, have to decide this “urgently”.  Being a bishop in good standing in ECUSA is no longer good enough by itself.


Won’t 815 take this statement above about “diverging…” as a reason to nix Mark Lawrence?  He’s on record as not going w/ the parrty lines of TEC, so cdn’t poss “be fully incorporated into its ongoing life.” 

So much can be made from vapidity.  Just watch what 815 does w/ this empty report. 

Praying that Akionla and GS will trash it,
Sally

[116] Posted by maineiac on 02-15-2007 at 01:51 PM • top

I am certain that it is not at all helpful to discuss pro-Catholic or anti-Catholic views on this post!!!

I do also want to note that the problem with ECUSA, and perhaps with Anglicanism (the jury is out), is not our local practice- and there is sin and error in all local and human practice of anyone honored with the title Christian; but rather our probelm is with official Doctrine, Theology, Scriptural Interpretation, and Eccelesiology.
K+

[117] Posted by concernedDallasite on 02-15-2007 at 01:52 PM • top

Kendall is absolutely right (no surprise there).  The report is untrue.  For example: The convention did not decide to drop language about a moratorium on gay bishops “because of legal counsel.”  The didn’t drop it at all.  THAT LANGUAGE WAS VOTED DOWN.

The reason the “exercise restraint” language passed was because it was the only language that could pass, and because convention delegates were told it would be a bone for the PB throw to the primates, without doing anything substantive.

I could cite to other things in the report that are untrue as well, but that’s the one that leaps out at me.

[118] Posted by Nasty, Brutish & Short on 02-15-2007 at 01:53 PM • top

Jason: I will take a back seat to no one in my contempt for what ECUSA has done over the past forty years, but your comments are over the line.  You don’t know what anybody has done to resist what has happened in ECUSA, so you know what you can do with your comments about “standing by” or “being complicit.”  Don’t preach to me or anybody else on this site about “personal integrity.”  But, if this is your standard, you are complicit in the rape and violation of thousands of innocent little boys - mostly - and girls - by priests of your church.  And you are complicit in the demolition of the patrimony of Western Christianity in favor of a moronic, dumbed down liturgy that only a progressive could love.  And, apparently, complicit in the jailing of dissidents in Poland (at least) during Communist rule.

Yes, I will take up the banner of orthodoxy - capital “O.”

[119] Posted by Phil on 02-15-2007 at 01:54 PM • top

Should read:

...Cranmer…

p.s. to Jordan Hylden—I really appreciated your essay on First Things and look forward to your continued comments.

[120] Posted by William P. Sulik on 02-15-2007 at 01:54 PM • top

Dr. Harmon,

I agree that the report is not true and most unhelpful. But my sense is that most of the primates feel the same way, to greater or lesser extents.  For three reasons:

1) +Duncan and +MacPherson have assuredly delivered perspectives that call nearly everything about the report into question

2)  Both the GS primates and ++Williams have shown a healthy skepticism towards ACC spin in the past

3) The contents of the report were already known to ++Williams, and yet we still saw +Wright and +Scott-Joynt making their strongly-worded “pruning” statements last week

[121] Posted by Jordan Hylden on 02-15-2007 at 01:57 PM • top

There is clearly a disconnect between the facts on the ground (that is, the debate at Gen Con 2006) and the interpretation of its words (that is, the resolutions passed) but that is always the problem when trying to look only at words (or resolutions) in this case to gauge someone’s response.  The group decided to read the words in the most charitable light, which we may not agree with but we shouldn’t judge them as being dishonest for doing so.  Giving someone the benefit of the doubt isn’t dishonest, it’s actually quite Christian.  Oh I better go duck and hide now…SDG!

[122] Posted by Widening Gyre on 02-15-2007 at 01:58 PM • top

Sally

Won’t 815 take this statement above about “diverging…” as a reason to nix Mark Lawrence?  He’s on record as not going w/ the parrty lines of TEC, so cdn’t poss “be fully incorporated into its ongoing life.”

815” can do nothing regarding (+)Lawrence.  The people there are a creation of GC and do not have a vote.  It is up to individual Bishops and Standing Committees to vote as they will.

[123] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 02:03 PM • top

I have not read all the comments (not enough time) but my sense from what I have read is there is alot of hand-wringing among conservatives.  It appears to me that this committee is taking TEC’s words at face-value, that they are making good faith efforts at compliance.  The test is whether their words can be trusted and will they be followed with faithful actions.  For many of us, we know the answer to that question. In time, all will.

[124] Posted by Tory on 02-15-2007 at 02:10 PM • top

Jason
Relax!  We are not happy where we are, but we also don’t refer to Mary as co-redemptorist with Our Lord.  There are plenty of strange practices to go around.

[125] Posted by DaveG on 02-15-2007 at 02:11 PM • top

Jason,

You are warned.  Do not take this thread off-topic again.

Not only is your comment off-topic, but it directly violates the clear examples that Greg provided of banning-worthy comments, to wit:

Therefore, I’d like to see no more:

1. Charges that anyone who leaves the Episcopal Church is a quitter, a coward, etc.

2. Charges that anyone who stays in the Episcopal Church is wasting their time, a heretic by association, etc.

3. Demands that we all fold up our tents and become Roman Catholic/Eastern Orthodox/LCMS/Presbyterian or whatever; and charges that those of us who prefer not to are idiots.

And this admonition and examples:

2. Attempts to derail discussion with off-topic remarks, or crazed obsession with a single topic. Example:

Commenter #1: “My love for the Anglican Communion has so far kept me waiting - I hope so much that the primates will establish discipline.”

Commenter #2 (off-topic… bad): “HAH! You say you love the Anglican Communion. Where is your love for true catholicity—which should be in the arms of the Roman Catholic church, where unity in Christ is *visible*, not the invisible claptrap that you folks pretend to care about. Answer my questions—are you truly catholic? Then why do you continue as Protestants? Please explain to me why you have not joined the true church?”

TO ALL COMMENTERS:

Because our traffic has more than doubled over the past few days, all of us will keep a steely eye on comments.  Now might be a good time to review the lengthy comment policy with examples right here:

http://www.standfirminfaith.com/index.php/site/article/1825/

[126] Posted by Sarah on 02-15-2007 at 02:13 PM • top
[127] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 02:15 PM • top

[deleted - admin]

[128] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 02:17 PM • top

Sitting in a hospital in New York with but a spare minute to check in on the goings on in Tanzan . . . and this is what I find!

Let me add my voice to the chorus.  Sad.  Pathetic.  Fudge.

However, let me also agree with those who pointed out that “the ball is still in play.” This is a report that was written a little while ago.  We have yet to hear anything about the actual decisions of the Primates, or the proposed Covenant, etc.  So hang on.  There will be ups and downs for the next 72 hours.

Keep praying.

[129] Posted by Id rather not say on 02-15-2007 at 02:20 PM • top

This is a courageous report, based on careful analysis of the real nature of the Windsor Report and the reality of the struggles within The Episcopal Church. There is still room for us all to live out our commitment as members of The Body of Christ within the same communion. How can anyone say less than “Alleluia?”

[130] Posted by TBWSF on 02-15-2007 at 02:22 PM • top

Good bye Jason

[131] Posted by Matt Kennedy on 02-15-2007 at 02:26 PM • top

Comment deleted,

Jason has been banned

Good bye Jason

[132] Posted by Jason on 02-15-2007 at 02:27 PM • top

RE: ” . . . suppression of the Gospel according to the Church founded by Christ himself upon the rock of Peter.”

You are no more a prophet than Jefferts Schori is and I don’t have the time to bother refuting your ideas, which are irrelevant to the topic of this post.

You are merely off-topic, and thus violating the comment policy, which has been clearly and repeatedly pounded on for a month now.  No commenter on this site can be unaware of the policy.

Two bannings in five minutes.  A new record.

[133] Posted by Sarah on 02-15-2007 at 02:32 PM • top

I am praying that this rubbish report is clearly seen as being so obviously and outlandishly false that it backfires in a huge way, damages the credibility of any moderated voice and emboldens the GS primates to ever increasing courage and strength against such horse hockey drivel.  The key to Satan’s power is not in telling outlandish lies, but ever so slightly twisting the truth such that the lie is almost undetectable.  Perhaps the utter absurdity of this BS report will be clearly seen and the mask of Satan revealed for what this report truly is…  A LIE.

[134] Posted by Spencer on 02-15-2007 at 02:33 PM • top

Jason - banned.

[135] Posted by Greg Griffith on 02-15-2007 at 02:33 PM • top

No where in this report - unless I somehow missed it - does it deal with the fact that A095 was passed in the last hour of General Convention 2006.  It came in under “national concerns” but carries a powerful line that endorses same sex unions (it calls it “commitments to mutual support”) which undermined any attempt by the Episcopal Church to say it was Windsor compliant.  I wonder if the drafters of this report even know about A095?  As I said, it was passed by the House of Bishops in the last hour of General Convention and nearly went under the radar.

It looked at first glance like supporting human rights ( a good thing), but it carries an endorsement of same sex unions - which it calls “commitments to mutual support enjoyed by non-gay married couples.” 

It doesn’t seem as though this report is aware of it - or did I miss something?

bb

[136] Posted by BabyBlue on 02-15-2007 at 02:33 PM • top

Jason -  If you want to yell at someone responsible, go find their site(s).  Better yet, go pray and ask God how you can help bring His light to the world.  Ask your priest how you can help keep what’s happening to us from happening to the Catholic Church.  This fight isn’t just happening in the Episcopal Church, it’s world-wide.

Stand Firm is one of several groups working on getting the TRUTH out so it can be heard.  It’s equipping those of us here in the Episcopal Church with weapons to fight for God’s Truth and His church.  NO church is perfect, and all churches experience sin by its leaders (read the news lately?).  We’re all sinners needing God’s help.

We will accept your prayers.  Please pray for the leaders in Tanzania - that they will be faithful to God and not man.  And pray for these websites getting the Truth out.  That’s how YOU can help us!  God bless you.

[137] Posted by The Lakeland Two on 02-15-2007 at 02:36 PM • top

Sorry, didn’t know Jason was banned yet. 

Felt that Ruth’s article was very good.  I can understand wanting to see eveything in the best light, but there was so much said at GC and right after that you would have had to have earplugs in and blinders on not to see that TEC has no desire to back off of its direction.

[138] Posted by The Lakeland Two on 02-15-2007 at 02:40 PM • top

Amen L2!!!

It’s in the RCC, just there a little more structure there, but I’ve had friends spend a lot time “shopping” to find a “good Catholic” church. Meaning they have revisionist there too, just our structure is more like the Eastern 0rthodox. Thank you Lord, they EO are so bent on Tradition, for they have similar weaknesses in ecclesiology as we do. It is world-wide!

[139] Posted by Hosea6:6 on 02-15-2007 at 02:45 PM • top

Jason’s comments (and subsequent bannination?) makes this descendant of English Catholics shake his head.  Anyone who’s read the documents of Vatican II would know that the Church is divine and human, and therefore always in need of the guidance of the Holy Spirit.  Would that younger, well-motivated Catholics do likewise, especially before commenting on the affairs of their house - or someone else’s.

On this side of the Tiber, my prayers are with all of you who are struggling to bring about good order in the Anglican Church, while keeping it open to all and preaching the sometimes difficult but always saving Word of God.  Peace!

[140] Posted by marco frisbee on 02-15-2007 at 02:54 PM • top

I hope that the Primates realize that their conservative counterparts have a little mud on their face as a result of this.  I personally told my Bishop that GC had failed to address Windsor adequately on points 1 and 2.  (I did not address 3).  He said they did; we came up a draw, apparently.  That is little sweat off my back; he’s retiring in a couple months and I’ll still be here!  But many of you here and on titusonenine have a lot invested in this with good reason.  The Committee said what it said, given their backgrounds I am surprised but I am sure they have honest intentions.  They are not the final word, and I hope that this firms resolve to do the right thing, not wilt in the face of a mild but decided setback.

[141] Posted by BCP28 on 02-15-2007 at 02:56 PM • top

From BRIAN:
“Oh Happy Day!
Looks like the reasserters have been crushed…again!  Ah, but fear not-they have an incalculable tolerance for abuse.  This reads like a complete deconstruction of Matt+’s three-part argument for discipline.  AND it was signed off on by the ABC and a GS Archbishop!
Well, post away my reasserting friends.  I look forward to your gleeful spin on why this document does not matter!”
Quite simply a nasty piece of gloating from an unpleasant individual.

[142] Posted by Bill C on 02-15-2007 at 02:59 PM • top

What a horrible thing…..to see Matt, Greg and Sarah have to resort to elf-like behavior!  Will the madness never cease????

smile

[143] Posted by Liz Forman on 02-15-2007 at 03:01 PM • top

Marco = thank you for your prayers.

[144] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 03:01 PM • top

Didn’t the ABC in June right after GC06 say in very strong language that TEC had failed to meet the conditions set out by the primates in 2005?  How can he then accept this report?  Has the ABC sided with TEC?  Have the GS blinked?  Shori has been seated and the GS have not walked away.  We will see what happens tomorrow.  However, if the reports of today stand and there is no discipline, then Shori et al have won.

Now, ultimately it will be a hollow victory, for TEC will reap some property and, eventually, a unitarian, nonchristian church with vestments.  But it does leave any (orthodox) Christian remaining in, not just TEC, but in the AC with a decision. 

I left TEC over a year ago, but am Anglican under Uganda.  If the worstcase scenario holds, if there is no disciplne forthcoming, then I probably will be learning to cross myself in reverse.

[145] Posted by Philip Bowers on 02-15-2007 at 03:03 PM • top

It ain’t over ‘till the fat lady sings…

Continue to Pray!

[146] Posted by Spencer on 02-15-2007 at 03:03 PM • top

I wonder whether the the study group was aware of Resolution B032 which effectively negates Resolution A159 that committed TEC to an ‘interdependent’ AC.  B032 says “no resolution of the General Convention is intended to affect either the historic separate and independent status of the churches of the Anglican Communion or the legal identity of The Episcopal Church”.  In other words, if GC passes a resolution that undermines TEC’s ‘independent status’ (namely A159)that resolution is void.  So ..... Resolution A159 endorsing TEC’s ‘Interdependence’ was effectively struck down by the later concurrence of B032.

[147] Posted by The Duke on 02-15-2007 at 03:05 PM • top

It’s recipe time again! This was the official candy of GC2006.

THE OFFICIAL TECusaCORP. FUDGE RECIPE

Ingredients: There is no list of ingredients. The Episcopal Church welcomes all ingredients, regardless of taste, smell, texture, or national origin. We feel that a specific list of ingredients puts the cook in an awfully small box and is damaging to the diversity of our fudge.

Directions: Mix all ingredients together in whatever size saucepan or other container you wish and cook over whatever heat turns you on for however long you want. When you think it is done, pour it into a pan and cut into squares, triangles, circles, parallelograms or whatever. Serve anytime.

Note: There may be some people who think your fudge tastes like crap. Pay no attention to them. They are vicious and un-Christian fudgeophobes. Remember, Jesus had nothing to say about fudge recipes.
You may substitute Anglican for TECusaCORP if you wish and have yourself some dandy Anglican Fudge. No NUTS required since, at least so far, no one in the leadership of the Anglican Communion has demonstrated that they have any.

Enjoy,
the snarkster

[148] Posted by the snarkster on 02-15-2007 at 03:24 PM • top

Gentlefolk of this online world:

A significant number of the important events of my life were not ones I had requested that God grant me.  Yet, they have all brought profound blessings in their wake.  I have longsince learned that His plan is always, I mean ALWAYS, better than mine.  He is the author of all creation; certainly we do not doubt that He has a use for this circumstance and our place in it.  If we fail to honor Him with that understanding we are not showing ourselves as a people of faith.

Be strong and of good courage.  (Boy, I wish I had thought of that one.)

Blessings, Andy

[149] Posted by Andy W. on 02-15-2007 at 03:31 PM • top

I withdraw, with apologies, my last phrase from my ending sentence.

[150] Posted by Bill C on 02-15-2007 at 03:33 PM • top

I say to you Jesus.
Yes, Jesus.
Jesus of Nazareth, the incarnate Son of God.
Where is He in all this verbiage?
What happened to the Christ at GC 2006? Was His name held out as the only name by which we must be saved? Nope.
Where will the Global South be without the Gospel? Did the Global South gain adherents by following the pluriform gnosticism of TEC or by preaching the Gospel? The original Gospel, from all that I have heard.
Many of the comments on this list do not deal with the essential question: Do we know Jesus through the OT and the NT or do we know Him another way?
If we know Him through the NT then there is no issue at hand. GC failed to comply with any of the three requirements of Windsor. Repentance? No. Moratoria? No. Universal agreement to comply with Windsor? No. Matt 18 would suggest that those not in compliance with Windsor should be to the Anglican Communion as tax collectors and sinners. I’m waiting.
If we do not know Jesus through the OT and the NT then there is no issue at hand. We can all hang up and go home. It is finished.

[151] Posted by mathman on 02-15-2007 at 03:37 PM • top

So, friends, what is the hope now that the ABC has his name of such a shoddy report?  Will he now suddenly must the courage to present a covenant with teeth tomorrow?

However you sign the cross, you will likely need to start looking for a Catholic or Orthodox Church in town.

But, if there IS hope for a real, substantive turn around, I’d like to hear what that hope is.

[152] Posted by J. Suggs on 02-15-2007 at 03:55 PM • top

I always feel obligated to apologize when another RC makes a hind end of a donkey out of himself.  So here goes.  I am sorry that Jason’s remarks were offensive. ( they were deleted before this posting so I don’t really know what he said but I bow to the judgement of Matt and the others)

I have observed the hopes and anticipations of those on this blog for this meeting.  I agree with those who see this report as at best the richest Anglican Fudge ever made, and at worst willful lies.

But remember this. The Gospel will never be silenced.  Men with fire, sword, guns, laws and armies have tried and failed.  Oh some have silenced it for a season.  Some places and people even now remain in darkness.  Even now godly men, women and children risk death to declare and live the Truth of Jesus Christ. 

But those who take up arms against the Gospel know something we believers often forget.  The Word of God is a dangerous one.  It can overturn empires.  It can bring armies to their knees.  It can vanquish that most wiley of foes, Satan himself.   

You are on the side of the Truth.  Your trust is not in any institution, no matter how godly it may be.  Your trust is in the person of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  In Him alone shall you find refuge and hope.  God bless you always.

[153] Posted by Paula Loughlin on 02-15-2007 at 04:23 PM • top

This is a beautiful prayer posted at http://southern-orthodoxy.blogspot.com/2007/02/syriac-prayer-pt-7.html
and offered for refreshment and hope. It begins:
“Create eyes in me, and so may I see with Your eyes,
for I cannot see with my own eyes…”
Enjoy!

[154] Posted by Margaret in Orthodoxy on 02-15-2007 at 04:23 PM • top

I think that it is wrong to assume that the subcommittee had limited access to information.  Obviously they were not isolated and were approached by many parties from differing positions.  The ABC had the most varied access to information.  Certainly the GS provided information to the subcommittee as well.  I think that Kendall+ has the right idea that this is indeed a definitive statement of the “Gang of Four.”  However, Scott Gunn at InclusiveChurch offers this analysis:

The briefer made it clear that no decisions were taken today, so it’s still up in the air. Progressives should not assume the worst is over, and conservatives should not be so quick to assume the worst.

http://inclusivechurch.blogspot.com/index.html

[155] Posted by Brian from T19 on 02-15-2007 at 04:23 PM • top

I haven’t head such falsetto shrieks of dismay since The Griz spilled the good sherry. Did everyone get up this morning and call around to agree to not take their meds? Dr. Harmon don’t you remember what happened the last time…The sumo incident and all? As soon as you all get over the vapors re read Jordan Hylden’s last post. Calm and sensible. This deal is not over. They haven’t voted on anything. Cool it.
I note with extreme pleasure the arrival of the Seer of Santa Fe in our midst. Whassup Tom+?  It’s just getting good now. Know we can count on you to really agitate the peasantry. This is going to be fun.

[156] Posted by teddy mak on 02-15-2007 at 04:27 PM • top

Dear Paula L.,

Thank you very much for your kind words. As an RC, I have found it hard sometimes to listen to the amount of misunderstanding that gets expressed in such narrow terms…from both sides of the Reformation. We none of us have the whole ball of wax neatly wrapped and ready to declare as “the spotless bride.” In the meantime we do our best and pray that God continues to cover the rest. Your generous encouragement is very, well, encouraging. Clinging to truth can be a very lonely assignment and it is comforting to know we are being watched-over by believers who are praying for us and who care deeply for the cause of our battle.

Thank you.

[157] Posted by AnnieCOA on 02-15-2007 at 04:43 PM • top

Well this bit of fudge explains why Canon Kearnon was so disheartened in chatting with the ABC that he emailed Louie about. I can see it now.

ABC: Listen Ken, that report from the sub group you sold me
as being just what we needed. Well, they’re not buying it.

CK: No, really, it will be fine…explains everything.

ABC: Uh, I don’t think so. You had better come up with something else.

CK: Well, can we still give it a shot in Tanzania?

ABC: Sure, what could it hurt. But remember, people have the internet and can see for themselves. We can’t just pull this stuff out of thin air anymore ok? See ya.

CK on the way out: I followed that recipe from Standfirm to the letter too. Damn that snarkster!

[158] Posted by Rocks on 02-15-2007 at 04:57 PM • top

If this is the best we can expect, then who needs the Anglicn Communion?

[159] Posted by DaveG on 02-15-2007 at 05:04 PM • top

Suggs asks,
“So, friends, what is the hope now that the ABC has his name of such a shoddy report? “

Some may trust in horses and some may trust in chariots, but we will trust in the Lord!

Dear Heavenly Father,
This church is not my church. 
This church is not the orthodox’s church.
This church is not the liberal’s church.
This church is not ++Duncan’s church, ++Akinola’s church, Schori’s church, or ++Williams’ church.
Dear Lord this is THY church and we surrender to you what has always been yours.
Forgive us for making idols and turning to our wicked ways.
Have grace and mercy on this thy church.
Redeem her, protect her and purify her from all unrighteousness for thy name sake.
We pray all these things through Jesus Christ, the only name under Heaven by which man may be saved, and by the power of the Holy Spirit.  AMEN.

[160] Posted by Spencer on 02-15-2007 at 05:19 PM • top

This appalling document will go into the books of ecclesiastical history as the death knell of the archbishop of Canterbury as the head of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The current ABC no doubt sees this as an exercise of his leadership to try to bridge the ever widening gap between the liberals and the orthodox.  The fellow has persuasive powers, which is why he was able to schnooker that unfortunate African primate into signing on.  Let’s be easy on our African friend, and chalk this up to his desire to bring a majority of that committee around to orthodoxy, but with the naivete of one who just was not used to the screwy post modern groupthink which Rowan and his friends grew up with.  This is a perfect example of how an obvious fact of TEC non-compliance in the clearest of ways will produce all sorts of contortions by a leader of the communion who desperately wants even at this late date to appease all sides.  A house divided against itself will not stand, Rowan. Decide quickly which camp you want to cast your lot with, or you will be despised by both.  Was it not Dante who said that the hottest corner of hell is reserved for those who preserve their neutrality in a time of moral crisis?  But who do you say that I am, Peter?  Some questions require crystal clear choices.  Will you ever make a choice, Rowan?

[161] Posted by Penafort on 02-15-2007 at 05:42 PM • top

Given what we’ve experienced in the past 20 years, and most particularly in the past 6, the question is not “who needs the Anglican communion” but “Why the Anglican Communion at all”? The Empire is dead, so there is no need to keep the colonials calm. As for Anglican “theology”, its primary passion is upholding the dominant culture. As for courage and forthriteness is embracing the Good News of Jesus Christ, you have the ACC, the A of C, and the Primates. So why?

[162] Posted by Dan Crawford on 02-15-2007 at 05:47 PM • top

Reading this report, I’m reminded of the opening hours of GC ‘06 in Columbus.  There actually was a time when we thought that GC might pass some halfway decent resolutions.  Bishop Lee had even suggested that the convention adopt the Language of the Windsor Report.  Then the wheels came off the wagon.

Folks, this is going to be a rollercoaster.  We won’t really know what happened until it’s over.

Wolverine

[163] Posted by Wolverine on 02-15-2007 at 06:05 PM • top

I am in full agreement that this document is not only appalling but dead wrong. I am also in full agreement that we won’t know what has actually happened at this meeting until it happens and when we are told (gee, I really did sound a bit like Yogi with that one). The point is- the document is a report, it is not a decision.

I do want to chime in with an enthusiastic KEEP ON DISCERNING to those who are actively wondering what has become and will become of the Anglican Communion and who may have to make a tough decision in the very-near future about whether you should stay a part of this “communion.” The jury is out and we cannot make a good decision about this until we get all the information!! I truly believe that those of us who believe in Jesus Christ and the “faith once delivered” must take a hard look in the mirror and ask some tough questions about why we are Anglican and whether we can remain faithful to Christ, to His body (the Christian Church), and then to the Anglican Communion, and then we must decide if we can do these things by remaining Episcopalians. But we can’t make this decision based on our feelings about a subcommittee report. If I be so bold—let’s hold tight and see what comes out of this meeting! 

I also want to chime in with an enthusiastic- LET’S PRAY and LET’s MAKE AN INTENTIONAL ACTION for Jesus Christ offering it up as a part of our discernment.  I happen to be in New Orleans, so I plan on sharing the good news of Jesus Christ to those here for Mardi Gras. Perhaps some of you know someone who is lonely or scared and you can be an agent of Christ’s grace to that person tonight or this weekend. A simple act of devotion to Christ does wonders for the soul and will relieve much of the fear and anxiety about the future of the Anglican experiment. Please know, I write this as someone who has been checking blogs every two minutes since Saturday, and I write this because I want some action from the primates and some sign from God that the Anglican experiment is done or that it has a hope and future in God’s plan for reunification of His Church and for proclaiming the good news of Jesus. Keeping abreast of the news is good, but so is prayer and action.

So let’s take action—let’s pray and let’s do an act of mercy for someone in our community. I may not be an Episcopalian in a month and I may not even be an Anglican- that is out of my hands now!!  But I can be a Christian- a disciple of Jesus Christ- right here and right now and I encourage all of us who desire to faithfully follow Christ and surrender to His will in Scripture to harness some of the energy/anxiety/fear/anger/desire (whatever the emotion) and put it to tangible use by offering up an action for God in the next days. I will continue to read the blogs constantly, and I will pray, and I truly believe that we can all make an outward act of our penitence and our desire to follow Christ by intentionally performing an act of mercy, bringing Christ’s grace to someone in need, or sharing the good news with a non-Christian.
I know that this post was a bit long, and it wasn’t very eloquent and it may have been inspired or it may have been way off base- but really do believe that our prayers and our actions can make a real difference right now and that regardless of what a committee reports, and regardless of where we will be in the Body of Christ in the next month, right now we really can make a difference for Jesus.
Pax,
Ken+

[164] Posted by KGL+ on 02-15-2007 at 06:26 PM • top

I seem to remember that early on in Lambeth 98 it appeared that the revisionists had managed to cook the meeting to their own agenda,  and there was despair that the orthodox cause was lost.  But the Primates came through, threw out the agenda and rewrote one of their own.  No one now even remembers what the original mealy-mouthed resolution was that was supposed to have come out of Lambeth, and ended up being deep sixed.  What people did remember (including the secular press) was that the balance of power had shifted from the North to the Global South.  And that was the big story.

[165] Posted by William Witt on 02-15-2007 at 07:37 PM • top

Keb+ - your post isn’t a bit too long. It’s just right. Thank you for writing it and for the timely reminder that while we wait, we can also act and pray.

[166] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 07:47 PM • top

Ok Sodbuster, this time you and I agree. That’s a good feeling! grin

Dan, as one who left the Methodist church to become Anglican in spite of all these goings on, my testimony is that Anglicanism has a tremendous treasure to share with the world, and I remain convinced that Anglicanism will be a major player in the revival of Christianity in America in the next 50 years precisely because of its richness.

  I left the Methodist church because I saw it had lost the treasure Wesley bequeathed it, and then I discovered that the richness of that inheritance had been preserved in the Global South.  God is doing something wonderful in his church that our mess won’t stop.  The Anglican heritage - won by heroes like Cranmer, Jewel, Hooker, Andrewes, and Wesley, is rich with both the gospel-centered evangelicalism of Luther, Calvin, and the other Reformers, and also with the ethos, catholicity, and sacramental legacies of the Benedictines and Aquinas, to name a few. I could go on, but I’ll stop there.  None of that is lost or tarnished by the self-destruction of an institutional form, because it transcends it.  We still carry all those riches with us.  If the Holy Spirit is gathering the people of God in a new way right now, it is to preserve the faithful so we can carry on with the telling of the Easter story as we are called to do.

[167] Posted by Craig Uffman on 02-15-2007 at 08:15 PM • top

Ken+, my apologies for flubbing your name when I typed it!!

[168] Posted by oscewicee on 02-15-2007 at 08:31 PM • top

Here’s a thought that has sustained me in dark situations:

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

It doesn’t mean that things will turn out the way you hope.  It means that no matter how they turn out, nothing can separate you from the love of God that is in Christ jesus.

[169] Posted by Catholic Mom on 02-15-2007 at 08:53 PM • top

Sarah - “Fret not thyself over evildoers”. This is a prime example of Church Polity, which is the Letter of the Law that Killeth. It is the Spirit that brings life. Your disappointment is appropriate:

“What a disgraceful report.  A denial of the very clear results of the 2006 General Convention.  I am embarrassed for all of the participants in this sham and scam of a report.”

As was the case at the time of the Dromantine Communique, the Primates should act as a Christian Body. We must pray that they will.

Here is a prayer uttered some time ago that still provides encouragement:

Psalm 68
1Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.

2As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.

3But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.

The Lord knows the end from the beginning. The Lord of Hosts is with us. The God of Jacob is our strength.

Keep up the Good Work. May the Lord Bless You and Keep You.

Stan

[170] Posted by stancase on 02-15-2007 at 09:11 PM • top

....and I used to like fudge….Thirty years ago, I was confirmed in the Episcopal church.  I was a recent escapee from an evangelical, free fall “home church” that almost drove me to utter despair.  I learned the word “neopalaganists”(?sp) - which means new heretics (the evangelicals with whom I worshipped) and the importance of “historicity” - which at that time could be found in the Episcopal church.  I remember learning early on “the church is an anvil that has worn down many hammers”  (I think that might have been Julian of Norwich).  I think the anvil has broken.  Now, being an Episcopalian feels a little like being Alice in Wonderland…..is it possible that the ABC is really the mad hatter???  Certainly, the neopalaganists are running TEC and any concept of historical significance has been flushed down the proverbial toilet.  I think I’m late for a very important date…with a church that worships the living Christ.

[171] Posted by no longer NH Episcopalian on 02-15-2007 at 09:52 PM • top

From the Gang of 4’s Appendix:

In sum, therefore, the General Convention discharged or rejected or declined to consider all resolutions put forward with regard to authorization of blessings of same sex unions. Therefore, the position of the Episcopal Church remains unchanged: no rites of blessing are authorized and neither is the development of such rites.

And yet, the following comes from the Connecticut diocesan convention in October, clearly indicating their intention to proceed anyway.  Of course, there are weasel words trying to disentangle “private” congregational pastoral blessings from “public rites”.  How will the Primates consider such a nuanced distinction, I wonder?

RESOLVED: That this 222nd Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut welcomes the opportunity to offer Christ’s blessing for same-sex committed partners who seek, in faith, the recognition, prayer, and support of the Church for their lives as followers and servants of Christ.

Today’s step is to begin to permit blessing as a pastoral ministry within a congregation…  As we prepare to take this step, I must be clear that we are not creating or authorizing a new sacrament. Nor are we giving a green light for public ceremonies that look and sound like weddings. Nor am I authorizing any public rite or liturgy.  What I am inviting us to do is create pastoral and prayerful occasions in which we can gather as Christians to pray and pronounce blessing. So we will be able to offer Christ’s blessing for those same-sex committed partners among us who seek, in faith, the recognition, prayer and support of the Church for their lives as followers and servants of Christ. ~ Andrew Smith, Bishop of Connecticut

[172] Posted by Connecticutian on 02-15-2007 at 10:36 PM • top

Paula L. and Ken+: thank you for your words.

[173] Posted by Phil on 02-16-2007 at 12:25 AM • top

A whitewash by any other name smells as awful.

[174] Posted by Bob Richenburg on 02-16-2007 at 04:50 PM • top

With all respect, Connecticutian, I think the situation is far worse than the Gang of Four let on.  As +Matt Kennedy has pointed out, C051 was ratified by GC2003 and only suspended by the HoB (in 2005, as I recall) until GC2006, when the issue was to be taken up again.  Since the issue was not taken up by GC2006, the suspension has lapsed and the development of same-sex blessings is now green-lighted within TEC.

[175] Posted by Jeffersonian on 02-16-2007 at 04:59 PM • top

“General Convention as a whole did not therefore specifically consider the question of a possible moratorium on same-sex unions. However, it is significant that General Convention declined to take further a number of resolutions which had been drafted to support their introduction.”

I nominate this statement for SPECIOUS ARGUMENT OF THE WEEK.

There were at least two reasons why GC 2006 “did not…specifically consider the question of a possible moratorium on same-sex unions.” Neither reason cuts in ECUSA’s favor.

First, GC 2003 had already purported to authorize such unions. It had thus already given advocates of such unions most of what they wanted.

Second, ECUSA’s leaders prevented a Windsor-compliant resolution on this subject from coming to a vote. You’ll recall how they dealt with such resolutions: bottled them up in hostile committees; deformed them by amendment; or ruled them unconstitutional.

Remember what happened to the original moratorium on consecrating bishops in same-sex unions? The leadership ruled that resolution unconstitutional on grounds that (as best I can recall) would have also applied here.

In seeking to excuse ECUSA’s inaction, the report evidently accords considerable weight to the fact that GC 2006 did not adopt new resolutions authorizing same-sex unions. But the Windsor Report did not call for a moratorium on resolutions; it called for a moratorium on blessing such unions. The report thus serves up appalling sophistry.

If I invaded and occupied your country three years ago, I would remain the aggressor today. My continuing occupation would make my position perfectly clear without any need for me to stage a second invasion.

PS: This report, with its shameful whitewash, is one more reason to be wary of letting Lambeth Palace continue to rule the Anglican Communion.

[176] Posted by Irenaeus on 02-16-2007 at 08:21 PM • top

God has warned us about false teachers and has promised judgment on them.  But the faithful are called to persevere.  Pray for the faithful in Tanzania, and all others who have suffered due to the apostasy of TEC.
From the Book of Jude:
3Beloved… I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. 4For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. 5Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe… 7just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities, which likewise indulged in sexual immorality and pursued unnatural desire serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire. 8 Yet in like manner these people also, relying on their dreams, defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones. ...10But these people blaspheme all that they do not understand, and they are destroyed by all that they, like unreasoning animals, understand instinctively. 11Woe to them! For they walked in the way of Cain and abandoned themselves for the sake of gain to Balaam’s error and perished in Korah’s rebellion. 12These are blemishes on your love feasts, as they feast with you without fear, looking after themselves; waterless clouds, swept along by winds; fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead, uprooted; 13wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever. ...16These are grumblers, malcontents, following their own sinful desires; they are loud-mouthed boasters, showing favoritism to gain advantage.
17But you must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ. 18They said to you, “In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.” 19It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit. 20But you, beloved, build yourselves up in your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit; 21keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. 22And have mercy on those who doubt; 23save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

[177] Posted by LHTC on 02-16-2007 at 11:19 PM • top

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