Sunday, March 18, 2012

Reporters and bookies looking for the wrong next ABC?

I am not much of one for believing in reincarnation but if the present ABC is correct then it is possible that his successor was one of the oxen lowing at the birth of Jesus :)

No, seriously, ++Rowan says his successor will need the constitution of an ox . Scouting about the net I see that already the pundits are lining up names for betting on ++Rowan's successor. On the one hand ++John Sentamu gets mentioned and then more or less dismissed ... which is a mistake surely because among his estimable qualities he does seem to have the constitution of an ox.

On the other hand in respect of +Dark Horse being appointed, I haven't see any mention of my +Dark Horse, nor, indeed, any mention of another one voiced to me by someone whose inside track on these things I have a great deal of respect for.

I suggest that the key thing to look for is not the person who has a CV full of qualities for the post but someone who has human qualities for the post which will be recognised by the Communion at large when they are appointed.


Father Ron Smith said...

Peter, my pick is Bishop James Jones of Liverpool. a large-hearted and open Evangelical; known for his charismatic openness to ALL people, not just his 'own kind'.

If its going to be an Evangelical - let it be a good one!

But, as Rowan says; "Let it be God's choice".

Peter Carrell said...

I don't think +Jones would be thought of as particularly evagelical these days by evangelicals!

Anonymous said...

I think that would be a fair comment, Peter.
Jones was in fact a leading contender last time. Now he's ten years older and has been ill. Aside from his revisionism on homosexuality, he's been more interested in 'green' theology than traditional evangelical concerns.
Tom Wright is the only one with notable intellectual or academic clout.
Well, we may be surprised. Maybe Graham Kings will emerge as +Dark Horse.
+Martin Leukos Hippos

Anonymous said...

Some stern words from the Archbishop of Most Anglicans:

"The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Revd and Rt. Hon. Dr. Rowan Williams took over the leadership of the Anglican Communion in 2002 when it was a happy family. Unfortunately, he is leaving behind a Communion in tatters: highly polarized, bitterly factionalized, with issues of revisionist interpretation of the Holy Scriptures and human sexuality as stumbling blocks to oneness, evangelism and mission all around the Anglican world.

It might not have been entirely his own making, but certainly “crucified under Pontius Pilate”. The lowest ebb of this degeneration came in 2008, when there were, so to say, two “Lambeth” Conferences one in the UK, and an alternative one, GAFCON in Jerusalem. The trend continued recently when many Global South Primates decided not to attend the last Primates’ meeting in Dublin, Ireland.

Since Dr. Rowan Williams did not resign in 2008, over the split Lambeth Conference, one would have expected him to stay on in office, and work assiduously to ‘mend the net’ or repair the breach, before bowing out of office. The only attempt, the covenant proposal, was doomed to fail from the start, as “two cannot walk together unless they have agreed”.

For us, the announcement does not present any opportunity for excitement. It is not good news here, until whoever comes as the next leader pulls back the Communion from the edge of total destruction."

Dear me, I thought Anglicans were supposed to be bland and inoffensive!


Peter Carrell said...

There are many comments such as ++Niegeria's emerging (mostly, I should point out, by non-++s squawking their grizzles on the internet. All such show the low state of Anglican acumen.

The single most important thing to laud without reservation about ++Williams is that he did his very best to 'win the game' with a very 'poor hand'. I challenge any detractor, whether an Archbishop or not, to tell the world who would have done a better overall job these last ten years. Yes, ++Williams made some mistakes but no one is perfect and no Anglican bishop is infallible!

Unfortunately ++Nigeria's comment includes elements of fantasy about 'mending the net' which are a great cause for worry if one supposes that a large number of Anglicans around the globe think his leadership is the sort that should be leading the Communion.

Anonymous said...

"The single most important thing to laud without reservation about ++Williams is that he did his very best to 'win the game' with a very 'poor hand'."

I think you are forgetting the immense dismay that Williams caused over his handling of events at Dar es Salaam and the ACC meeting in Jamaica, where the outcome was that Tec went full speed ahead and damn the torpedos, and the Africans lost all confidence in him. Add all that wasted energy and money over Windsor and Dromantine and the stage-managed Lambeth that Africa boycotted, and it's hard to call this a success or the best one can do. There was one thing he could have done but never could bring himself to do: cut Tec loose after the Robinson consecration. But no, he wouldn't do it.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has gone the way of the British Empire - a fine thing while it lasted but makes no sense today.

Peter Carrell said...

I am convinced that ++Rowan made mistakes. I am not convinced that another person in the role these last ten years would not have made mistakes. I am also left wondering, after ++Nigeria's comment, whether a TEC excluded, Nigeria dominating Communion would be a great idea. Perhaps ++R saw that!

Father Ron Smith said...

"Maybe Graham Kings will emerge as +Dark Horse." - 'leaky Hippo' -

- So dark as to be almost invisible! And as for +Tom Wright, that would be very Wrong!

I think that the rot was setting in before ++Rowan's time. It began with Lambeth 1:10 under 'Mother' Carey, whose chicks were addled.

++Rowan did his best to re-unite the Communion, but with people like ++Akinola on the prowl, there was little hope of the Anglican 'Bonds of Love' being reconstituted.

Anonymous said...

While I do not always agree with him, on both theological and political matters, I do think Tom Wright would be, no pun inteaded, the right man for the job. What the Communion needs is someone willing to take a clear stand on the authority of Scripture, and who is willing to do what needs to be done. Anoter person who simply wants to muddle through would be a disaster.

I generally agree with Peter that RW has probably done the best he could have in the situation, though not without mistakes. That said, I was never a fan. Anyone with that much facial hair who calls himself a socialist tends to worry me ;)

carl jacobs said...

Peter Carrell

I am also left wondering, after ++Nigeria's comment, whether a TEC excluded, Nigeria dominating Communion would be a great idea. Perhaps ++R saw that!

And so you will receive instead a TEC-dominated Communion shorn of its conservative elements. There has never been a possibility of a third way. What RW saw was that there was no way to square this circle. So he simply delayed in hopes that one side or the other would change it mind. It was a poor bet.

RW could have made a difference but he refused to allow TEC to be held to account. Everything he did, he did to protect TEC without formally alienating the GS. He spoke out of the right side of his mouth, and then acted with his left hand. Yes, he played a bad hand. But that's because he resolutely refused to trump TECs aces.


Anonymous said...

"Everything he did, he did to protect TEC without formally alienating the GS. He spoke out of the right side of his mouth, and then acted with his left hand."

True enough. But he did alienate the GS in spirit, such that they no longer trusted him - a feat neither Carey nor Runcie achieved.
As for the Great Unwashed, they were largely baffled by his prose.

Father Ron Smith said...

It would not take too much to 'alienate the GS in spirit'. The mean-spirited exclusivism of GAFCON has ensured that the Communion is now so busy fighting over 'moral rectitude', it has become bereft of Gospel Hospitality to the poor and the marginalised existing at the edges of society - even in the very dark places of GAFCON's own home territorial enclaves.

One could be very unlucky to meet a GAFCON Primate on the road when in real need.

In this Season of Lent, one needs to recall the dereliction of Jesus on the Way of the Cross: "Is it nothing to you who pass by?" Jesus could deal with Sinners, it was the Self-Righteous he had problems with