The News hounds, who have mostly done us great service during the meeting of the Primates of the Anglican Communion, seem quiet this Saturday, out lazing under a tree one hopes, scratching a bit and snoozing in the heat of the day. By now I suppose they have been to supper and are resting for tomorrow's boat ride to Zanzibar.
There has been just a trickle of news. The Episcopal News Service has posted the Press Briefing for today. No one seems in a hurry to pick it up.
The day's activities seemed to consist of discussions about matters that are precisely in the normal purview of the Primates.
They discussed theological education, and in particular the suggestion that the whole of the Communion work on the issue of hermeneutics in the hope that perhaps there could be a better understanding of the differences in the ways the various churches, seminaries, theologians and regular paid up Christians understand the read of and use of the Bible.
They discussed the Millennium Development Goals, poverty, economic justice and environmental issues. ENS pointed out that "For its part, the Episcopal Church has adopted as its chief mission priority for the next three years peace and justice work framed by the MDGS, which Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori affirms as central in her own ministry."
And yes, there was continuing discussion of the Episcopal Church's response to the Windsor Report.
But it seems the day was spent in the sort of conversations that will encourage the various Primates to return to their jurisdictions and give new energy to work on these issues. The reports from various Provincial Synods, from the Global South gatherings and from a number of official networks within the Communion, all return again and again to thes issues. They do so even when there seems to be a pressing need to attend to Anglican Communion affairs.
But such focus does not make news. Working on eradication of malaria is a very big deal, but it is not controversial, except in so far as we might ask why it is taking so long to get programs underway.
The sad fact is the purported crisis in the Anglican Communion is like the yell of "fire." It brings the newshounds from their rest and the bloggers from our other lives. It gives us all something to distract us from the work we can and must do together.
Suppose we were able to run the headline, "Anglican Primates base agenda on God's preference for the Poor: Propose major initiatives of the 70 million member Communion, agree arguments irrelevant to those in greatest need."
Well, that would get the news folks running, I suppose. But the gentle, plodding, hard work efforts to discuss what the Church can and should do takes a while, requires trust, and is no news at all. It is just the work the Primates are supposed to do, and are doing.
No news at all, except for those that have ears to hear and eyes to see.