There is simply no way that ++Rowan in the remainder of his tenure of office, even if that were for another twenty years, will achieve what reports of his end of Primates' Meeting interview imply, that a series of visits to absentee primates will build bridges, mend bridges across the chasm which yawns - it is getting a bit boring - through the Communion.
Eventually, after fifty to one hunded years we may see rapprochement and reunion. It has happened with the once split three ways Methodists in Britain and with the once split two ways Presbyterians in Scotland. But in the remainder of my lifetime we will not see this chasm overcome. The persistence in belief that 'this (and not that) IS the way of the Lord' on both (or more) sides is simply too strong for hopes to be realistic for an earlier achievement of new unity. (Though, in the Lord, I do not give up hope).
So expect the following for decades to come:
(1) There will be no theological, liturgical or ministry orders issue of concern to the wider Communion which will be engaged with by the Instruments of the Communion.
Deacons presiding at the eucharist? No problem at all. Lay presidency? Go for it.
(2) There will be many statements issued by the Instruments of Communion concerning any issue in the world outside of (1) above.
Whether anyone is listening will not matter.
(3) Global South will become the powerhouse of the Communion: it will represent the majority of all Anglicans around the world; life within Global South will develop with good self-discipline around the decisions it makes about common life; some Anglican dioceses outside Global South will be increasingly drawn to meet with Global South.
It is not as though no Anglicans have anything in common anymore. Those who have the most in common will meet with purpose and make decisions with significance. Future Anglican rapprochment will emerge as the powerhouse of the Communion increases in strength to the point where other Anglicans realise their future also lies with the dominant player. (It is not clear to me that GAFCON has the leadership necessary to develop a healthy Anglicanism for the 21st century. I do not write GAFCON off, but I would invest in Global South rather than GAFCON).
(4) The next Archbishop of Canterbury will be chosen for his or her bureaucratic, managerial skills. Theological acumen and visionary leadership will not be needed by the See of Canterbury for some time to come.
Mercifully for ++Rowan's future reputation, he will be seen as one of the greatest theologians on the throne of St Augustine, and people disappointed at the blandness of his immediate successors will look back wistfully on the intelligence of his writings and sermons.
(5) The zenith of TEC's influence on the life of the Communion is now. Over the next few decades its declining numbers will expose the weakness of the hand it has played: progressive theology is not a theology of renewal of generations in a church. American money will keep the ACO afloat for a while longer, but eventually the financiers will understand that money is going down the drain on meetings of no importance.
ACNA may rise in strength but it needs to find leadership able to build and maintain bridges within its own ranks.
For us in ACANZP we need to take great care. We face many problems and have some severe structural impediments to resolute engagement with those problems. One such problem is the future viability of St John's College as a college of education and training for the mission of our church. It is not clear as I write that we are going to be able to solve the problem, though some extraordinary effort is going into doing so. For some time to come we will have leaders divided as to whether the 'American' or 'Global South' approaches to being Anglican are best for us. In the end, clarity will emerge!