Saturday, November 6, 2010

So the Covenant is not a good idea?

Votes are running on a Church Times blog 4:1 against the Covenant. It has been declared 'not Catholic' (but see excellent response on More Than a Via Media). So the Covenant is not a good idea? I think the question being missed in the plethora of splutterings about the Covenant and its alleged constraining of debate and discussion, imposing of control on individual Anglican churches, and so forth, is whether the Covenant is good for the future of the Communion in its present global, 38 member strong form? And, if it is not, is there an alternative proposal which is good for its future?

Note, I do not find satisfactory those proposals which do the following:

(1) Exalt the autonomy of individual churches at the expense of the existence of the Communion.

(2) Pave the way for a future entity called the 'Anglican Communion' which is a diminishment in size of the current entity with a narrowing of the theological breadth of the Communion to the centre to liberal part of the spectrum.

But if you are part of the 4:1 voting against the Covenant and are happy with (1) or (2) ... no probs! Be happy :)


Andrew Reid said...

Hi Peter,

In terms of alternative proposals, how about an option 3?

- Create an alternative structure(s) within the Anglican Communion for disaffected provinces and dioceses to belong to, where they can more fruitfully partner in mission with those of similar theological convictions. It would need some kind of agreement that it would not plant new churches in existing dioceses, but existing parishes/dioceses who wish to join should be free to leave their existing structures without penalties or threats.

I am envisioning something along the lines of a conglomeration of provinces and dioceses involved with GAFCON, the Global South and ACNA, who would subscribe to the Jerusalem Declaration as their confessional basis. They would remain part of the Communion, but decline to participate in official meetings and fora while the AC continues on its current trajectory.

I understand this is probably getting a bit close to (2) for your liking, but I can't see any other way to keep the whole ship from breaking apart.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Andrew
I am all for something rather than nothing, for any workable compromise rather than disintegration!