10/07/2005

Things are Quiet for the Moment.

Someone today asked why things seemed quiet on the House of Bishops / House of Deputies list, a message board for members of the General Convention deputations past and present.


I think in part it is because things are winding down and are not yet winding up again: it may be the lull before the storm. Executive Council is meeting now, the South to South Encounter happens later this month, a meeting of Network folk happens next month, and on and on.

Than again, it may be that the recent huffing and puffing about what the Archbishop of Ireland, the Archbishop of Nigeria, the Archbishop of the Southern Cone have REALLY said, not to mention the "real meaning" of the press releases concerning the South to South Encounter, the formation of a Special Commission on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, have left most of us finally breathless, or worn out, or simply tired of the round and round we get in if we are not careful.

Whatever else can be said, at least:

(i) The Archbishop of Ireland said ECUSA and The Anglican Church of Canada did some significant work at the ACC meeting, a statement which I believe is true no matter what else it is that we are called to do, wish to do, or know how to do. At last someone on the Lambeth Commission on Communion offered some remarks about the extent to which its requests were met. Unless you want to simply deny what the Archbishop said, he said we met them.

(ii) The Church of Nigeria acted as an autonomous entity and changed its own constitution without permission of anyone, an action which tends to support the notion that Anglican Provinces are not necessarily bound to super-provincial authority in defining themselves. I regret that the Church of Nigeria made the decisions it made, but I support the notion that they had every right to do so. Where that leaves them in regard to being part of the Anglican Communion awaits to be seen.

(iii) The Anglican Communion office has listed the Bishop of Recife as the one recognized by the Church of Brazil, and not the one attached somehow to the Province of the Southern Cone, a recognition which continues the principal of Provincial Autonomy in yet another way, and it tends to support the notion that the Anglican Communion consists of Provinces and Dioceses RECOGNIZED as such by the offices of the Communion. It will be interesting to watch what happens if and when some or all members of any diocese in the US or Canada attempt to so affiliate with a jurisdiction outside ECUSA.

But I must also say, given this, that I am aware that none of what I have just written will satisfy those who have been writing recently on the HoB/D list or any other. Indeed perhaps part of why I have not written recently is simply that I don't really want to go round and round again. I suspect that is true of some others.

Meanwhile, it is hotter than it ought to be here in Lewes, Delaware, but I am satisfied to be thinking of that strange and interesting Gospel set before us this coming Sunday. Thank God this is a Parable and not an Allegory!

Also, I can pray that cooler days and cooler heads will give us more to chew on and better atmospheric conditions to work in!

1 comment:

  1. I think far too much is being made by both sides about the change on the website concerning the diocese of Recife. Concerning the change, the Church Times states: "A spokesman for the Communion office said on Wednesday: 'It was at the request of the provincial authorities, the Primate, and the provincial secretary that we removed it. It is their site, not ours.'"

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