Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What does it mean to be Anglican in North America?

In early December it is almost certain that the accumulation of parishes and dioceses which have been breaking away from TEC and ACCan will formally announce that they have formed a new Anglican province in North America and that this province will be recognised by GAFCON's Primates Council. An important question will then be whether the new province is recognised as a province within and fully in fellowship with the Anglican Communion and the Archbishop of Canterbury. Technically such recognition requires the assent of the Anglican Consultative Council and the consent of the majority of (all the) Primates.

(As per a recent posting on the Fulcrum Forum) I support this new formation, albeit with some reluctance, including some wariness about the agenda within GAFCON and the limitations of its vision for Anglicanism, and with a simultaneous continuing support and admiration for conservative Anglicans who remain committed to working within TEC and ACCan. I personally know conservative Anglicans on both sides of this particular equation and want to trust the judgement of those who are breaking away and will be forming the new province. My general sense is that they are worn out by the continual process of both North American churches forwarding a liberal agenda without regard for how conservatives, minority though they undoubtedly are in respect of voting numbers, might be honourably included within their fellowship. (This, of course, is to say nothing of the pursuit of this liberal agenda in the face of countervailing opinion in the Communion, in the presidential addresses of the ABC at Lambeth 2008, and in the general thrust of the tradition of Anglicanism and the universal church since the days of the apostles).


liturgy said...

The GAFCONites in Canada and USA will form approximately 0.06% of the population. This is a loss of about 7% of Anglicanism in USA/Canada.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Liturgy
The GAFCONites face a huge challenge, faced and lost by all previous breakaways from TEC and ACCan: growing from something miniscule to something much larger and thus (to the extent that this matters) demonstrating through sheer numerical size that their theology and praxis is 'the' Anglicanism of North America.