Thursday, February 15, 2007

Real news: Report of the Communion Sub-Group

Here's the link to the report. (pdf here)

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
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.
Jim Naughton at daily episcopalian gives a quick analysis (" I've read it through once, so here is a quick response that I may, no doubt, live to regret: In general it seems a positive evaluation of the Episcopal Church's response to the Windsor Report"). His commenters add more (including Charlotte: "The report, significantly, states that we complied with the Primates' requests (i.e. Dromantine) and not merely the Windsor Report. And it ends with the wish that violations of the Windsor Report's strictures against boundary-crossing could be addressed with equal seriousness. It provides no basis for the "expulsion" or "disciplining" of TEC, and I don't see that it provides much of a rationale for APO, or a "two-province" solution, either.").

Commenters at titusonenine are discouraged. Those at StandFirm call it fudge.

Ruth Gledhill:
'Chilling,' is how Kendall Harmon described it, warning that schism now was even closer than before. This report would have the effect of propelling TEC further away from the centre and hasten any breach that is looming, he said.
Kendall Harmon of TitusOneNine was one of the first off the mark. 'It is a really, really poor report. This report was written by someone who was not at General Convention. It is shocking that a report like this could have been written at this stage. General Convention took the Windsor Report and subverted it entirely so they could use it as they wanted to use it and they have already started doing this.
Kendall warned that schism had now been brought even closer. 'This has made the survival of the Anglican Communion less likely. That is what breaks my heart. I would say there is an inch of thread left.
Fundamentally, the response of TEC to Windsor at GenCon06 was deemed by the group to be adequate except with regard to same-sex blessings. At the meeting, which began at 9am and went through to 5pm at the heavily-guarded White Sands Hotel in Dar es Salaam, both TEC's Primate Katharine Jefferts Schori and the CofE's Dr John Sentamu remained present as full members.
At the press conference, Aspinall, pictured above, was asked whether TEC still needed to be disciplined, and whether schism was closer or further away. The answers he gave to both were frustratingly imprecise. He said that although TEC in its GenCon resolutions did not use the precise language of the Windsor Report, it did the most that could have been done, and the reponse was adequate in its own terms.
Gledhill's post ends with a sentence from an email to her from Harmon:
There is now a real chance that South Carolina will not get the necessary consents by the March 9th 2007 deadline, in which case what will be communicated is: no one of traditional faith can be approved as bishop in this province again. Chilling.' "
Uh, no. No one who expresses readiness to take his diocese out The Episcopal Church should be considered for bishop. Which is essentially how the ACC's report concludes as well.

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