6/02/2005

The ACC Schedule...and the matter of additional input

In an earlier post to my blog I gave some unsolicited “Thoughts for Executive Council,” as they were about to meet to consider a response to the Primate’s request that we not send our normal delegation to ACC but rather send a group to “explain.” The publication of the ACC schedule prompts me to wonder if one of my concerns has become a reality.

I said in my post, “TEC has been specifically asked to provide further explanation. Its delegation should ask for clarification on the ground rules for interchange between the presenters and the sitting representatives of the ACC, and the Executive Council ought to offer such advice as it will concerning the extent to which the delegation will enter into debate, answer follow-up questions, respond to other written documents as may be brought into the discussion by ACC representatives, and the extent to which the ACC might or might not invite questions from resource persons they may gather for the occasion. The presentation should only take place with clearly agreed on norms for the presentation itself.”

The schedule for the consultation (which is what the presentation of representatives is being called) consists of three sessions: The first for the ECUSA presentation, the second for the Anglican Church of Canada and the third for “input from other Provinces.”

We know who the spokespersons are for ECUSA and the ACCanada. If this is to be a conversation between the delegates to the ACC and the participants invited from ECUSA and ACCanada, I assume “input from other Provinces” will be provided by the regular delegation of those provinces.

Perhaps that is precisely what is meant: Having listened to the two presentations the delegates from other provinces would in this third session respond and offer input, questions, etc.

But if the “input” consists of opinion, information and the like from persons other than the seated delegates, this is somehow an extension of presentation into debate, pro and con, with the ACC delegations hearing out ‘both sides’ of an issue, to some end not yet clear. First, I hope that this is not the case. If that is the case, it would be helpful to have such speakers clearly identified before the sessions begin.

It may be of course that everything is as it should be. My concern obviously is that we are going to seen repeated at ACC the gathering of leadership of various groups that gathered around the Primates Meeting, and that some of those people might become the “input from other Provinces,” on the grounds of having "both sides" represented.

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