The man Noll, he like to say Yes, because of entry conditions, and the man Nazi-Ali, he like to say No, because of the absence of exit conditions, as regards the Ridley-Cambridge Draft Covenant.
I've covered Noll, so what's Bishop Nazir-Ali saying (soon to have plenty of available time in which to organise GAFCON and the FCA)?
- The theology of the Covenant remains weak, with the introduction 'outside' the Covenant itself
- Nothing about the communion between or among particular Churches on a belief-fellowship basis [contrast would be with Archbishop of Canterbury's Advent Letter 2007]
- Reference back to the 1930 Lambeth Conference (the teaching role of bishops) is not fully reflected in the decision-making processes proposed
- Moves away from the previous language of autonomy in interdependence to a renewed emphasis on autonomy (no biblical or apostolic evidence)
- No power to direct any province causing offence nor the response of any of the other provinces
- The possibility of both covenanted and non-covenanted Churches continuing to belong to the Instruments of Communion
- How long to wait for the Covenant?
Well, such is Anglicanism: a collection of autonomous Churches! This Covenant Draft achieves nothing. A little while back I wrote:
It goes in one direction, and undermines itself, it goes in another direction, and undermines itself. It cannot achieve anything other than more argument. Nothing can be imposed, and probably little can be generated in order to be directed. Its emphasis is against a two tier Anglicanism that might be a basis for disciplining, and so cannot serve the purposes of the theological/ ecclesiological right, but whilst moving slightly leftward (in terms of autonomy, scholarship, Holy Spirit) still leaves wheels that can rotate against such movement.
A rare moment of agreement between Nazir-Ali and the likes of me!