Thursday 20 March 2008

What Are They Going To Do?

The Most Rev. Dr. Mouneer Anis, Bishop of Egypt, North Africa and the Horn of Africa, muses on the extension of the Covenant timetable to 2015. He wants people:

to pray especially for Archbishop Rowan and the Windsor Continuing Group so that the right decisions would be taken.

What decisions? A decision to proceed with the Anglican Communion Covenant - to 2015 or 2012 if rushed? Some fifteen provinces only responded to the Nassau Draft and they went from hostility to the lukewarm. Even England cannot accept instruction from outside. The St Andrew's Draft is a watering down (from that viewpoint), with resistance already shown to its potential appendix (e.g., in the English General Synod) that is itself ambiguous about discipline. The power centres of Anglicanism reside in the national Churches, not in the Communion.

Meanwhile whilst Mouneer Anis says one thing, Suheil Dawani was doing something a little different. He has met with The Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori and she presented him with a cheque for useful projects. This must have been a useful meeting, coming as it does before GAFCON descends on the bishop's diocese despite the fact that he did not want GAFCON there - and yet he will go to see them to tell them a little about reconciliation rather than conflict. She is there for Holy Week.

So as with Fulcrum lately and as with Mouneer Anis: what are you going to do? GAFCON has decided that a schism has happened already, and so is busy doing the actual schism. One wonders if GAFCON, which was shrinking rather rapidly as it managed to so annoy potential supporters, can rise to the opportunity of these others hardening their positions. Alternatively, as in the evangelical ability to snatch defeats from victories - this all could well end in one almighty mess for the evangelicals. While they end up divided, and nothing much being done, a tolerant Anglicanism might just - just - plod on and emerge within many national Churches where this is growing increasingly necessary and right.

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