Thursday, April 26, 2012

Could ++Katharine Jefferts Schori be next Chair of the Primates Meeting?

Be careful what you wish for! The GAFCON Primates have called for an elected Chair to head the Anglican Communion Primates' Meeting, rather than the Archbishop of Canterbury as is the ex officio tradition to date. Now I do not think it involves any expertise in rocket science to draw a conclusion that the GAFCON Primates would expect the first such elected chair to be a man. But, in fact, it could be a woman, that is, the one and only woman primate, ++Katharine Jefferts Schori.

Consider: there are 38 primates who can go to that meeting (if they all turn up, which hasn't happened recently).* Would there be 20 possible votes for ++Katharine Jefferts Schori.

Let's see: England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Canada, TEC, Australia, ACANZP, Melanesia, Southern Africa, Japan, Brazil, Central America, Mexico, Korea, Papua-New Guinea, Philippines, Myanmar, South India, North India. That would be, in my view, twenty possible votes.

OK, sure there would be those who might not be so agreeable to ++KJS on, say, theology. And, almost certainly, there is the problem that her tenure as primate is time limited and this would rule her out of consideration. But then if those twenty did not vote for her, whom might they vote for? ++Nigeria? Possibly. ++England? Ah, now there is a thought, there could be a majority for electing the one who formerly held the role ex officio!

*Technical aside: while the ABC has been Chair as an ex officio matter, the Archbishop of York has turned up as alternate Primate of the C of E, a theoretical maximum of 39; but under a new regime, surely things would revert to one primate per member church attending.


carl jacobs said...

KJS elected head of the Primates meeting? Yeah, I wouldn't fret too much about that possibility. KJS isn't going to have much to do with the plans being discussed by GAFCON. Anyways, she is going to be far too busy stripping TECs dioceses of assets in order to keep 815 running. GENCON 2012 is going to entertaining this year. No doubt about it.


Father Ron Smith said...

From my experience of her capability, Bishop Katharine would make an excellent Head of the Primates Mtg.
She is insightful, pragmatic, and a woman of prayer - and not a bigot.
In fact, a very Christ-like Pastor.