Tuesday, February 17, 2004

The Lambeth Commission on Communion

Simon Sarmiento provides us with a good summary of General Synod;
What the Church of England said about ECUSA
over on Anglicans Online. You might want to take a peek at their cover story as well regarding blogging. Celery green sites...hmmm...should I be offended?

Among other things, the GS summary does point out that it has now been made clear that the Church of England considers itself in full communion with all provinces of the Anglican Communion, including ECUSA and the Diocese of New Hampshire. That is an important statement to me, as I define an Anglican as one who is in communion with Canterbury, and I sincerely desire to remain an Anglican.

The Eames Commission, now called the Lambeth Commission on Communion, has issue a statement.
A section of this statement is worth repeating;

The Commission is saddened that tensions within the Communion, exacerbated by the use of strident language, have continued to rise in recent months. In addition, there has been the declaration from significant numbers of Anglican Provinces of impaired or broken communion with the Episcopal Church (USA) and the Diocese of New Westminster, Canada. Although representing a broad range of opinion across the Communion, the Commission members are united in their commitment to preserving the unity of the Anglican Communion, and to finding a way forward.

The Commission requests all members of the Anglican Communion to refrain from any precipitate action, or legal proceedings, which would further harm "the bonds of communion" in the period whilst it completes its work. Mission and ministry, including prayer for unity, remain the priorities.

I agree with the sentiment of the Commission, but find it difficult to simply be silent when the likes of Bishop Duncan continues to disperse hurtful misinformation. God cannot be revealed to us today? The life expectancy of gays is 20 years less than heterosexuals? Those who disagree with him are not simply revisionists, but heretics? Bishop Griswold lied? Keep in mind that this is the "moderator" (head honcho, although I'm sure he would prefer Archbishop) of the Network, and a major spokesperson and executive board member of the AAC. I'd better stop there with comments about this interview, before I begin using more strident language.

Kevin Jones on Every Voice, gives his view of how the conservatives may have overplayed their hand. He uses some strident language of his own (takeover troops, schismatics), which no doubt adds fuel to the fire. Unfortunately, I don't agree with his conclusion. I don't think the conservatives will retreat. As I mentioned previously, they are Anglican Fundamentalists, who see this as a cosmic battle between good and evil.

"Mission and ministry, including prayer for unity, remain the priorities." Ok, ok! Let my blood pressure drop a few notches first, and I'll try, with God's grace, to set aside my own biases, and prepare myself for tomorrow; a day that will include both mission and ministry; a day that cannot allow this tension within the Communion to become an unnecessary distraction.


O God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, our only Savior, the Prince of Peace; Give us grace seriously to lay to heart the great dangers we are in by our unhappy divisions; take away all hatred and prejudice, and whatever else may hinder us from godly union and concord; that, as there is but one Body and one Spirit, one hope of our calling, on Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, one God and father of us all, so we may be all of one heart and of one soul, united in one holy bond of truth and peace, of faith and charity, and may with one mind and one mouth glorify thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(BCP, p. 818)

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