Friday, February 11, 2011

Making up the rules as they go along

Sharp as usual, George Conger presents another seeming folly emanating from the ACO. This time concerning an American who is not an American who has been appointed to ARCIC. Why does Canon Kearon make these proposals and why does ++Rowan agree to them? How do those Americans recently demoted on other commissions feel? Conservatives are not happy, as Conger reports, pointing out an intriguing contradiction in Communion polity. But The Lead is scarcely chirpy about it. Hey, but didn't the Primates' Meeting last week (much lauded by my critics) devolve even more power to the ABC and the ACO? Remember: we get the Communion we deserve.

This ARCIC is in the hands of a good man as chair. None other than Down Under's own Archbishop David Moxon. There are few troubled waters ++David cannot smooth. (The full team is here).

Even ++David, however, will be hard pressed to explain to his Roman counterpart what the topic of this ARCIC, 'The Church as Communion - Local and Universal,' means to Anglicans today. We are not a universal communion. We are forbidding the meetings that might make decisions from making decisions about our communion being renewed. And in ++David's own patch, there is little 'local communion' occurring between tikanga.

I would love to be a fly on the wall of the meeting when one of the Anglicans explains to the Romans how the absenting bishops and primates from recent Communion meetings have absented themselves because they hold views which have more in common with Roman doctrine than with the views held by some Anglican bishops. That is, there is more in common between Rome and the protesting bishops than between Rome and the presenting bishops!

The good thing, then, is that ARCIC might help us Anglicans to engage in some common sense reflection on the state of our communion together, both universally and locally!


Father Ron Smith said...

" why does ++Rowan agree to them? How do those Americans recently demoted on other commissions feel" - Host -

Probably, David, the TEC people recently (as you say) 'demoted on other commissions' now feel listened to by Rowan and the ACO, at last. By inviting TEC and the A.C.of C. to Dublin, Rowan has, eventually, shown that he is a match for the pressure from the Global South to exclude the North Amnericans from the Communion.

I am aware that you would dearly like TEC and the A.C.of C. to be left out in the cold, but fortunately Rowan and the rest of us see how the negativity and puritanism of GAFCON and ACNA is antithetical to Anglican inclusivity, and is no longer viable in the mission of the Church to the World of today.

I have more faith in the cautiousness of ABC ++Rowan than I do in the schismatic tendencies of ACNA. I think you may find many more N.Z. Anglicans feel this way than you - from your puritan perspective - might have suspected - despite Bryden Black's inference that Bishop Katherine was not welcome on her recent visit to Aotearoa/New Zealand.
He should have asked those of us who actually met and talked with her at the time.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron,
It will be interesting to see if those demoted feel that ++Rowan has listened to them by the appointment to ARCIC of a fellow American, OR more bemused than ever by the way the ACO and the ABC operate!

I am afraid you are completely wrong when you say "you would dearly like TEC and the ACofC to be left out in the cold". I would be happy to be shown where I have indicated that. What I would like is for all bishops of the Communion to meet at Lambeth and all primates at the Primates' Meeting. That not having happened I would like for communion leaders to show more leadership on the matter of how such inclusive gatherings might take place - a leadership singularly absent from the recent Primates' Meeting.

In what way does such a wish for true communion in the Anglican body represent a 'puritan perspective'? I also ask, are all Anglicans subscribing to traditional teaching of the church on marriage to be slated as 'puritan'? Why are you, as a self-avowed catholic Anglican seemingly unable to accord simple respect to fellow Anglicans who hold to catholic teaching of the universal church?

Brother David said...

Truthfully Peter, I have not seen Father Ron speak so openly in these parts, so I am convinced that something has loosened his tongue!

The CoE Newspaper, quoted by the Lead states that Canon Kearon confabulated with Bishop David before making the appointments. So I am not sure that you can lay this a +Rowan's feet.

And in ++David's own patch, there is little 'local communion' occurring between tikanga.

You make it sound as if you now live with a segregated church.

Peter Carrell said...

Thanks for the update re who consulted who, David!

'Segregated' is a loaded term (as I know you know) and with that load I do not think it the best term to describe the relationships between our tikanga.

Practically there is a lot of separate activity so it is rare for a joint eucharist service to take place between (say) Maori Anglicans in Christchurch and Pakeha Anglicans. Yet any Pakeha choosing to worship with Maori Anglicans at their church will always be warmly welcomed (and vice versa). Generally we lament not having closer ties with each other and either do nothing about it, or find that all sorts of reasons present themselves for nothing rather than something happening.

Our three tikanga relationships are on best 'display' at our General Synod and at St John's College, Auckland.