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Jam and Jerusalem

Monday, January 21, 2008 • 3:09 pm


Homosexuality dominated today’s official launch of the Lambeth Conference, the 10-yearly gathering of the world’s Anglican bishops taking place in Kent this summer, with the Archbishop of Canterbury speaking frankly of the “climate of controversy” in which they were meeting.Dr Rowan Williams acknowledged that despite the “painful controversies” clouding the life of the communion for the past few years, about 70% of bishops worldwide had formally registered for the conference while a number of others had signalled their intention to attend. It showed, he said, “a strong loyalty to each other and a desire to stay together”.

His remarks came amid threats of a boycott from conservative Anglican leaders following the consecration of the openly gay bishop of New Hampshire, Gene Robinson, in the US in 2003.Churches in Nigeria and Uganda have indicated they will not attend Lambeth and there is doubt over the presence of some bishops from the Church of England, including the Bishop of Rochester, Michael Nazir-Ali.

Last year, it was announced that Robinson had not been invited to the conference, but that Williams intended to “explore the possibility” of inviting him as a guest.

When asked if he had decided whether Robinson would attend, Williams replied: “Gene Robinson has not been invited to the Lambeth Conference and it is proving extremely difficult to see under what heading he might be invited to be around, and that is where we are.

“To those bishops who do not wish to attend, I recognise their absolute right to choose in good faith and in conscience whether or not they can be there. The invitation is on the table; naturally I shall be delighted to see more rather than fewer bishops there, that is their choice, but the door is open.”

Robinson is not, however, barred from visiting the conference and it is thought that his presence, and planned activities by gay rights campaigners at the event, deterred traditionalists from accepting the archbishop’s invitation.

Williams also announced that the conference programme would not shy away from the issue of sex and sexuality, saying there would be two ways to discuss the issue.

“We will look at sexuality and the ministry of bishops. We will be reporting back from the listening process that came out of the previous Lambeth Conference. It’s also going to be part of conversation informally day by day.”

The three main areas to be explored at the conference will be the internal life of the communion centred on talks about the Anglican Covenant, interfaith relations and international development and environment issues.

The launch was also attended by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s wife, Jane Williams, and Margaret Sentamu, wife of the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, who are presiding over the spouses’ conference.

Mrs Williams, who is an academic theologian, said some people may think of their event as “jam and Jerusalem, more tea vicar, or mitre-making and flower arranging”.

She said: “There will certainly be food and singing in our programme but there will also be a chance to meet some of the most interesting, committed and dynamic people in the Anglican communion.”

Entire article can be read here.

Hat/tip:  Anglican Mainstream


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Comments:

“We will look at sexuality and the ministry of bishops. We will be reporting back from the listening process that came out of the previous Lambeth Conference. It’s also going to be part of conversation informally day by day.”  We will “look at” it? What took so long? Seriously, that horse left the barn YEARS ago. Anyway, I thought that the ABC “looked at” the issue of sexuality pretty conclusively when he performed the secret gay eucharist recently. This is all too much. The detachment that this man shows is just about unnerving. Its one thing to stay above the fray; its another to act as if its not happening.

[1] Posted by Bob K. on 01-21-2008 at 04:32 PM • top

They ought to start by looking at why Christ came down from heaven to begin with, why He had to be born to a virgin, why He had to die on the Cross, as well as the significance of His resurrection.  All other discussion is a waste of time and breath unless and until there is agreement on this.

[2] Posted by physician without health on 01-21-2008 at 04:44 PM • top

Robinson is not, however, barred from visiting the conference and it is thought that his presence, and planned activities by gay rights campaigners at the event, deterred traditionalists from accepting the archbishop’s invitation.

  Hmmmm…..now, is +Martyn Minns barred from the conference?  Or can he visit too?  VGR’s spouse?  Can TEC organize a clown eucharist in Canterbury Cathedral?  I know it won’t be officially sanctioned, but come on.  The only good thing that I can see coming out of this is that there will be 10 consecutive days in which KJS will not have time to inhibit anyone.  Of course, she will have the law firms back home, so it will not slow down the new lawsuits.

[3] Posted by tjmcmahon on 01-21-2008 at 05:09 PM • top

I’ve gotten hints and seen pointers that +Rowan may not really be in touch with reality and may benefit from a mental disorder practioners help. I’m serious…. one of the last famous guys we all know of watched Rome burn while he fiddled. How can you be so far out of touch?

[4] Posted by DaveB in VT on 01-21-2008 at 05:50 PM • top

It’s difficult to believe that a man could be quite this useless and inept, isn’t it, #4?  Yet, here we are.

[5] Posted by Jeffersonian on 01-21-2008 at 06:26 PM • top

Of course if +KGS and +VGR cared one wit about anything other than themselves and their puffed up importance, if they cared one wit about the AC, +VGR would honeymoon somewhere else and be quiet…. BUT NOO00oo.., let’s send 3 Bishops to plead with +Rowan, let’s let +VGR have a nice honeymoon in England. I recognize the camel’s nose is under the tent because +Rowan has no backbone and the +VGR consecretor’s will be going… BUT +KJS does not need to play that card if she was at all concerned about the AC. How duplicitous. Oh yes - let’s be inclusive, and listening, BUT it’s got to be my way…. I won’t listen to those on the other side, after all they’re of course wrong. I’ll only include and listen to those who agree with me.

[6] Posted by DaveB in VT on 01-21-2008 at 06:58 PM • top

The liberals wont settle for Robinson just visiting the conference while he is on his honeymoon.  They want OFFICIAL INVITATION AND PUBLIC ACKNOWLEDGEMENT FROM CANTERBURY THAT ROBINSON IS INVITED. ONCE THIS IS DONE THE LIBERALS WILL FEEL THEY HAVE WON BY SPIRITUALLY, MORALLY, EVEN CANONICALLY DESTROYING THE COMMUNION.  THESE LIBERAL SATANISTS CAN THEN DANCE AROUND TO THEIR OWN SELFISH GLEE TELLING THEMSELVES THEY HAVE GOTTEN THEIR WAY.

[7] Posted by BishopOfSaintJames on 01-21-2008 at 06:59 PM • top

“We will look at sexuality and the ministry of bishops. We will be reporting back from the listening process that came out of the previous Lambeth Conference. It’s also going to be part of conversation informally day by day.  We anticipate that one welcome outcome of the ‘so-called listening process’ (in which the only ones doing any listening at all are the progressive bishops) will be the revocation of that pesky Lambeth 10.1 ruling at this summer’s Lambeth tea party.”

[8] Posted by Bill C on 01-21-2008 at 07:52 PM • top

It is difficult to determine what is real from what is invented for the cause of the Anglican Communion. Is this a real article describing an event, or just demonstrating that one can write the article now for the opening of the meeting this summer?

It is a sad state when news just looks like propaganda.

[9] Posted by Dr. N. on 01-21-2008 at 09:34 PM • top

The published agenda confirms the tea and jam part.  There’s nothing in it to suggest any backbone possessed by anyone and certainly not the planners or conveners or alleged head of the communion.  Sorry to say, but this is exactly as promised last August or September.  Labelling it a jamboree was not insulting but accurately descriptive.  Alas.

[10] Posted by dwstroudmd+ on 01-21-2008 at 09:59 PM • top

Robinson is not, however, barred from visiting the conference and it is thought that his presence, and planned activities by gay rights campaigners at the event, deterred traditionalists from accepting the archbishop’s invitation.

For what it’s worth, those who are not coming stated their reasons clearly in “The Road to Lambeth.”

We will definitely not attend any Lambeth Conference to which the violators of the Lambeth Resolution are also invited as participants or observers.

[11] Posted by Stephen Noll on 01-21-2008 at 10:17 PM • top

AHHHHH. We will address the topic of the day through the LISTENING PROCESS, maintained and controlled by the Anglican Communion Office, meaning Kearon and his diddies.  Oh boy, I cannot wait.  But wait, we should be able to read the reports on the anglicancommunion website, stay home and save four thousand dollars a person (just in food and lodging).

[12] Posted by francis on 01-21-2008 at 10:49 PM • top

planned activities by gay rights campaigners at the event

Uh… excuse me?  What does secular social activism have to do with a religious conference?  Christians gather to talk about our mission and our duties, not our supposed rights and entitlements.

[13] Posted by st. anonymous on 01-22-2008 at 07:21 PM • top

Is no one else worried that the absence of orthodox bishops will give numerical advantage to the heterodox bishops to approve pro-SSB and pro-VGR resolutions that will countermand Lambeth 1998?

[14] Posted by Diezba on 01-23-2008 at 04:37 PM • top

Diezba,
I think Diezba that most of us are mourning the fact that Lambeth 1998 has already been countermanded by the ABoC himself.  And believe me, those are very difficult words for me to write.  Since he refuses to enforce a 500+ to 97 (if I remember correctly, 97 opposed, is that right?) vote, what possible difference does it make what they decide this time around?

I would much prefer if all bishops showed up at Lambeth.  But several provinces have made it very clear that (unlike TEC) they will share communion only with churches with which they are in communion.  The ABoC has not kept his word on Lambeth invitations, nor observed the expressed will of the primates at Dromentine and DeS, and has invited people he had led all of us to believe he would not invite.  Now he is utterly shocked that a group of Anglican bishops is actually going to keep their word and observe catholic discipline and not participate in a conference that includes the very people who have destroyed the Communion.  Ok, granted, as a life long Episcopalian, I am also surprised that there are bishops who will keep their word.  It’s about time.
    Would it be better for the unity of the Anglican Communion if all bishops attended? Of course it would.  But would it be best for the one holy catholic and apostolic Church?  Of that, I am not so sure.  What I am becoming increasingly certain of is that while the Communion and the Church overlap in places, the first is not necessarily a subset of the latter.
  By the way, did anyone ask him at the press conference yesterday if he would maintain the invitation to +John David Schofield?  If not, could we arrange to send a real reporter to the next one?

[15] Posted by tjmcmahon on 01-23-2008 at 04:52 PM • top

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