Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Property Litigation Continues Despite Anglican Call for Suspension

[The Christian Post] 28 Feb 2007--The Episcopal Church plans to continue litigation to recover church properties from 11 Virginia congregations that left the denomination.

Gay Bishop Urges Episcopal Church to Reject Anglican Ultimatum

[The Christian Post] 28 Feb 2007--The first openly gay Episcopal bishop, whose consecration has brought the world's Anglicans to the brink of schism, said Tuesday that the Episcopal Church in the U.S. should not give in to demands that it roll back its acceptance of gays.

C of E's General Synod affirms homosexuality no bar to full participation in the church

[Anglican Mainstream] 28 Feb 2007--The danger is that this can be taken to mean that lesbian and gay Christians are welcome as full members of the church, whatever their behaviour and practice.

Related articles:
Church of England Synod Passes Compromise Resolution on Homosexuality - Christianity Today UK
Anglicans to vote on issues regarding gays and lesbians - International Herald Tribune
Anglicans to review stance on gay clergy - Telegraph

Venables predicts two-tier communion

[Times Online] 28 Feb 2007--Archbishop Gregory Venables of the Southern Cone kindly agreed to speak to me about the Primates' Meeting.

Panel of Reference - delays and excuses continue

[Stand Firm] 28 Feb 2007--Tragic. Truly tragic. The Panel has delayed so much that a judge doesn't have any faith that the will report on a timely basis. And even if they did the judge can see that the Diocese won't comply if the report goes against it. Well done Carnley and the ACO. Great job there.

And kudos to +Howard, a supposedly "Windsor" bishop. 815 must be laughing. As mentioned in the transcript, the parties are in court again on Friday, 2 March. Perhaps +Howard might like to push a little less "autonomy" and, instead, go for more Communion. Will he call off the lawsuit? Somehow we doubt it.

Bonnie Anderson writes to the Panel of Reference again.

[Stand Firm] 28 Feb 2007--As you know, the Episcopal Church has, for over thirty years made a pastoral and not a juridical response to those who oppose or cannot accept the ordination of women. Even since the 1997 amendment no one has been disciplined for failure to follow the Canons on the ordination of women. Many, many people have spent extensive time and energy privately, locally at the diocesan level, and through groups tasked by General Convention to work pastorally on the situation. We continue to do so.

Reading the Dar Es Salaam Communique Part 2

[Stand Firm] 28 Feb 2007--In recent days some dispute has arisen with regard to the intent of the primates. Do they seek a commitment from the Episcopal Church not to permit public rites for same sex blessings to take place at all or do they seek a commitment from the bishops of the Episcopal Church that they will not personally authorize such rites?

Why am I reminded of a bunch of kids trying to convince themselves that the grown-ups did not say what the grown-ups said when they told the kids what the kids could and could not do?

Reading the Dar Es Salaam Communique: Part 1

[Stand Firm] 28 Feb 2007--It is important to remember that the primates see the violation of the teaching of Lambeth 1.10 as core to our current turmoil. It should then be quite clear that when the primates call the bishops of the Episcopal Church to declare a moratorium on the authorization of same-sex blessings, they are interested in the cessation of same sex blessings altogether. We must not permit the facile distinction between “allowing” and “authorizing” such rites to be taken seriously.

Jefferts-Schori: How not to listen to anyone at all

[White Horse Inn] 28 Feb 2007--…which is, frankly, quite appalling for someone who keeps going on about “listening”.

From here, Schori’s “Word to the Church”. Here’s the bits that really grabbed my attention....

Chancellor: Cessation of Lawsuits Must be Part of Comprehensive Agreement

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--The Episcopal Church will not suspend or withdraw from property lawsuits it initiated unless there is a comprehensive agreement that takes into consideration “all the other recommendations of the primates’ communiqué,” said David Booth Beers, chancellor for the Presiding Bishop.

Primatial Vicar Proposal Insufficient for Chicago Parish

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--The primatial vicar experiment proposed by the primates in their communiqué last week has not persuaded the majority of the congregation at Church of the Resurrection in West Chicago to remain with The Episcopal Church said the rector, the Rev. George Koch.

Parish Unrest for 'Windsor Bishop' in Northwest Texas

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--The release of the primates’ communiqué on Feb. 19 appears not to have dissuaded the Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl, Bishop of Northwest Texas, from pursuing litigation against a congregation which recently voted to leave The Episcopal Church. But the communiqué has injected a new ray of hope into another diocesan congregation which began a 40-day period of discernment regarding its future.

Presiding Bishop Outlines Discernment Process, Schedules Webcast

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori delivered a 24-minute briefing on Feb. 23, telling members of the staff at the Episcopal Church Center in New York City that The Episcopal Church will lose its prophetic voice within the councils of the Anglican Communion if it is unable to give the reassurances requested of it by the primates.

Panel of Reference Not Bound by TEC Polity

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--The fact that each province has its own polity and policy does not prevent other members of the Anglican Communion from considering and coming to its own conclusions about such matters, stated Archbishop Peter Carnley, retired Primate of Australia and chair of the Panel of Reference.

Primates' Communiqué Draws Mixed Reactions From Bishops

[The Living Church] 28 Feb 2007--A number of bishops of The Episcopal Church have reacted publicly to the publication of the communiqué from the meeting of Anglican primates in Tanzania which concluded this week.

British Evangelicals warn the Labor Government over Sexual Orientation Regulations

[EV News] 28 Feb 2007--The Christian Today website reports today that Affinity (formerly the British Evangelical Council), which represents about 1300 evangelical congregations issued a declaration yesterday warning the Government not to go ahead with its proposed Sexual Orientation Regulations.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Bishop Schori Says One Thing, but Does the Opposite

[Transfigurations] 27 Feb 2007--It took Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori less time to go back on her word this year than it did for the former Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold to go back on his word in 2003.

Anglican Agonies

[] 27 Feb 2007--When Johannes Gutenberg wound up before the Great Judgment Seat, some six centuries ago, one can only imagine he got a suspended sentence, pending assessment of how well this printing press thing was likely to work out. And here we are still wondering.

For instance: Is homosexuality the root of the Episcopal Church's and the Anglican Communion's well-advertised anguish, as the media -- Gutenberg's heirs -- seem to believe and teach? Or, as with so much the press spews out half-digested, does something else go on -- something deeper

True, the latest squabble finds Asian- and African-Anglicans sternly warning their American and European cousins to disengage from the quest to normalize same-sex relationships or else. But as Peggy Lee inquired, "Is that all there is?"

Not as Laurie Goodstein, in The New York Times, reports the matter -- moving at least part of the way toward a surer understanding of the theology, instead of the politics, presently at stake. "The underlying differences [between Anglicans]," she writes, "are over the basic understanding of tradition and Scripture. The conservatives say they are something sacred and fixed, while the liberals say they can be open to interpretation and responsive to new information." Not a perfect formulation, but better than "conservatives refuse gays their undoubted rights."

Episcopal Church Given Ultimatum

[The Bahama Journal] 27 Feb 2007--After much discussion and agony, the Anglican Communion has given the Episcopal Church in the United States one last opportunity to reflect and unequivocally answer two key issues, which sit at the heart of an ongoing dispute.

Episcopalians not ready to swallow 'bitter pill'

[Church Executive] 27 Feb 2007--Conversations over the issue of homosexuality are not going away within the Anglican churches, said the U.S. Episcopal head on Friday. But all the while, the U.S. church body believes it has a gift that it does not want to let go of.

Episcopals face split over homosexuality

[Evening Sun] 27 Feb 2007--In the spirit of Lent, the midstate's Episcopal bishop has urged prayer, discernment and hope in God after Anglican leaders demanded the U.S. church abandon its liberal stance on homosexuality.

Episcopal Church facing a dilemma

[Home News Tribune] 27 Feb 2007--When Great Britain ruled the oceans she saw missionaries go to Africa, and revolutionaries to the New World. Africans in large numbers accepted what the missionaries had to say, while the revolutionaries declared their independence.

Anglican Evangelicals Welcome Tanzania Primates Communiqué

[Christianity Today UK] 27 Feb 2007--Evangelicals in the Church of England have issued a statement of support on the recent communiqué on the Episcopal Church of the USA by the Primates of the Anglican Communion in Tanzania.

Tanzania: Anglican Primates Warn of Split

[] 27 Feb 2007--The Anglican Church in Africa could break away from the cradle in England by September over the raging controversy on homosexuality and gay marriages.

Anglican Head Reveals Efforts for Unity, Makes Homosexual Stance Clear,_Makes_Homosexual_Stance_Clear.htm

[The Christian Post] 27 Feb 2007--The issue in the Anglican Communion right now has nothing to do at all with the place of the Bible, the head archbishop of the denomination said.

Related article:,,2022229,00.html
Public view us as sex obsessed, archbishop tells Anglican synod - Guardian Unlimited

Rowan Williams on Communion Divisions

[EV News] 27 Feb 2007--Two significant factors to start with. The debate triggered by certain decisions in the Episcopal Church is not just about a single matter of sexual ethics. It is about decision making in the Church and it is about the interpretation and authority of Scripture. It has raised, first of all, the painfully difficult question of how far Anglican provinces should feel bound to make decisions in a wholly consultative and corporate way. In other words, it has forced us to ask what we mean by speaking and thinking about ourselves as a global communion. When ''gentlemen''''s agreements'' fail, what should we do about it? Now there is a case for drawing back from doing anything much, for accepting that we are no more than a cluster of historically linked local or national bodies. But to accept this case - and especially to accept it because the alternatives look too difficult - would be to unravel quite a lot of what both internal theological reflection and ecumenical agreement have assumed and worked with for most of the last century. For those of us who still believe that the Communion is a Catholic body, not just an agglomeration of national ones, a body attempting to live in more than one cultural and intellectual setting and committed to addressing major problems in a global way, the case for ''drawing back'' is not attractive. But my real point is that we have never really had this discussion properly. It surfaced a bit in our debates over women's ordination, but for a variety of reasons tended to slip out of focus. But we were bound to have to think it through sooner or later.

And it has arisen now in connection with same-sex relationships largely because this has been seen as a test-case for fidelity to Scripture, and so for our Reformed integrity. Rather more than with some other contentious matters (usury, pacifism, divorce), there was and is a prima facie challenge in a scriptural witness that appears to be universally negative about physical same-sex relations.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Archbishop of Canterbury pleads for trust amid Anglican dysfunction

[ekklesia] 23 Feb 2007--The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, who is spiritual head of the fractious 78-million strong worldwide Anglican Communion, has described the decisions taken by the recent Primates (heads of provinces) meeting in Tanzania as a trust-building exercise to preserve unity in the face of disagreement.

A liberal response to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Episcopalians Mull Anglican Membership

[The Christian Post] 23 Feb 2007--Three years of emergency summits, nuanced apologies and behind-the-scenes negotiating failed. Anglican leaders this week gave the U.S. Episcopal Church an ultimatum: Halt your march toward full acceptance of gays, or lose your place in the global Anglican family.

The last two sentences of this article are the kicker. Gives you a fair idea of with whom Rachel Zoll's sympathies lie.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Dispute over homosexuality not over yet, says Archbishop of Canterbury

[Anglican Journal] 22 Feb 2007--Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has said that the creation of a pastoral council to provide oversight to dissenting churches and congregations in the U.S. is “an interim solution that will certainly fall very far short of resolving all the disputes that are before us” but was nonetheless one that would “provide a way of moving forward with integrity.”

Presiding Bishop of ECUSA reflects on Primates' Meeting

[World Faith News] 22 Feb 2007--ENS international correspondent Matthew Davies spoke with Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, who offered some reflections on the meeting.

Americans given a deadline to repent

[] 22 Feb 2007--Dr Peter Jensen, the Archbishop of Sydney, has described an ultimatum sent to the the US Episcopal Church as an ‘answer to prayer’.

The Anglican Communion has given the Americans a September deadline to stop blessing same-sex unions. It is likely they won’t be invited to Lambeth – the key Anglican decision-making meeting – if they do not comply

Inclusive Anglicans give guarded OK to Anglican Primates compromise

[ekklesia] 22 Feb 2007--For the past 48 hours the websites, newsgroups and email lists of Anglicans across the world have been abuzz with analysis, argument and counter-argument concerning the outcome of the Anglican Primates (heads of provinces) meeting in Tanzania, which ended earlier this week.

It’s a good thing the Anglican Church discussed gays

[Tanzanian Standard Newspapers] 22 Feb 2007--bishops ended a weeklong meeting by issuing an ultimatum to the US Episcopal Church to end gay appointments to the clergy and to stop blessing same sex “marriages.”

Kendall Harmon: Early Reaction to the Communique

[Stand Firm] 22 Feb 2007--Well, what this Communique says to the Episcopal Church leadership is: you thought you did enough but you were wrong. The central headline I would write would be "we are not yet persuaded...." That is significant. TEC remains on the hot seat with a clear and short deadline and two very clear and specific requests. The consequences are very serious if they do not....

Bill Coats & the Episcopal Majority: RESIST!

{Stand Firm] 22 Feb 2007--...This resolution, itself a product of extreme political machination, may be the approved "standard" of the Lambeth Bishops (though, it should be noted it was not adopted unanimously) but has never been presented to the national churches.

In demanding capitulation from the Episcopal church the primates have now designated themselves as a mini "college of Cardinals" We reject this role outright as an arrogant violation of Anglican polity which always and everywhere must include the laity

House of Bishops Will Begin Response to Communiqué in March

[The Living Church] 22 Feb 2007--Now that the Feb. 15-19 primates’ meeting is over, the next step is for The Episcopal Church to receive the communiqué and for the House of Bishops to respond in the ways in which they have been asked, said Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

A Church of England Newspaper Interview with Bishop Robert Duncan

[Global South Anglican] 22 Feb 2007--The leader of the American Church’s traditionalist coalition, Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh has told The Church of England Newspaper he is “cautiously optimistic” over the outcome of the Feb 14-19 Primates Meeting in Dar es Salaam.

Archbishop Henry Orombi of Uganda on the Primates Meeting

[Global South Anglican] 22 Feb 2007--In 2003, the Episcopal Church USA, now abbreviated as TEC (T – E – C), culminated years of their theological revision by consecrating as Bishop a divorced man living in a same-sex relationship. This was a blatant action in violation of Scripture and the historic teaching of the Church.

As the Primates wrote at the end of an emergency meeting in October 2003, this action has torn the fabric of the Anglican Communion at its deepest level. In fact, the Church of Uganda, along with 21 other Provinces of the 38 Provinces in the Anglican Communion, broke communion with TEC. Accordingly, I have not received Holy Communion at any Primates meeting since then – I did not receive Holy Communion in 2005 in Dromantine, Northern Ireland, and the two times we celebrated Holy Communion at this meeting in Tanzania, I did not receive Holy Communion.

Scripture teaches that before coming to sit with one another at the Lord’s Table we must be reconciled. (Matthew 5:23-26 and 1 Corinthians 11:27-29). I, along with several other of my brother Primates, were unable to come to the Holy Table with the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church because to do so would be a violation of Scriptural teaching and the traditional Anglican understanding of Holy Communion. The Prayer Book invitation to Holy Communion makes this very clear. It says, “Ye that do truly and earnestly repent you of your sins, and are in love and charity with your neighbours, and intend to lead a new life, following the commandments of God, and walking from henceforth in his holy ways; Draw near with faith.” (Book of Common Prayer)

Archbishop Hutchison says church must look 'seriously' at primates’ request

[Global South Anglican] 22 Feb 2007--The Anglican primates’ directive for the U.S. church to unequivocally bar same-sex blessings and gay bishops is something that the Canadian church “will have to look at seriously,” according to Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada.

TEC put on notice

[Times Online] 22 Feb 2007--As we reported in The Times today in a story updated for later editions, there has been a surprising, late-night development from Tanzania. I had speculated that the softness so far towards TEC augured a tough line in the Covenant and Communique, but even I did not expect anything quite so hard-line.

The US Episcopal Church has been given seven months to change its ways or face being kicked out of the Anglican Communion. In an unexpectedly hard-hitting set of recommendations, Primates of the Anglican Communion demanded an "unequivocal common covenant" under which dioceses in The Episcopal Church agree not to authorise same-sex blessings. They also demanded that no more gay men or women in active relationships with a person of the same sex be consecrated bishop. The recommendations are so severe in demanding proper repentance and a turning back from The Episcopal Church that even arch-conservative Peter Akinola of Nigeria was prepared to sign up. Bishop Jefferts Schori also signed it, but there will be many in The Episcopal Church who will be angry at what they see as a sell-out of their liberal ideals. Reuters carried a report during the night. Early reaction is appearing on StandFirm. Thinking Anglicans is keeping up to date.

The Primates further demanded that The Episcopal Church cease the costly litigations it has begun against traditionalist parishes seeking to leave the oversight of a liberal bishop.They pledged to set up a new Pastoral Council that will take responsibility for securing traditional oversight for those who cannot accept the ministry of their bishop or of Bishop Jefferts Schori, a liberal on other doctrinal issues besides human sexuality.

More Responses to the Tanzania Comunique & Draft Covenant can be found at the Global South Anglican website at

Archbishop of Canterbury's comments at the final press conference in Tanzania

[Global South Anglican] 22 Feb 2007--What I’d like to do is touch briefly – very briefly – on the issues in the final communiqué of our meeting. As usual, you’ll see elements there of narrative – this is what we did, these are the activities we shared and these were the subjects we covered.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

US bishops told to stop appointing gay clergy

[Inspire Magazine] 21 Feb 2007--Anglican leaders have issued a communiqué to US bishops demanding an end to the appointment of clergy “living in a same-sex union” and the blessing of gay couples, reports the BBC.

Anglicans Rebuke U.S. Episcopal Branch

[The New York Times] 21 Feb 2007--Facing a possible churchwide schism, the Anglican Communion on Monday gave its Episcopal branch in the United States less than eight months to ban blessings of same-sex unions or to risk a reduced role in the world's third-largest Christian denomination.

Many Episcopalians Wary, Some Defiant After Ultimatum by Anglicans

[The Ledger] 21 Feb 2007--There was a time when the Episcopal Church in the United States was known as “the Republican Party at prayer,” but in the last 30 years it has evolved into the Rainbow Coalition of Christianity.

There are hip-hop Masses, American Indian rituals to install a new presiding bishop and legions of gay and straight priests who don the rainbow stoles of gay liberation. Its pews are full of Roman Catholics and Christians from other traditions attracted by its aura of radical acceptance.

Now the conservatives who numerically dominate the global Anglican Communion have handed their Episcopal branch in the United States an ultimatum that requires the church to reel in the rainbow if it wants to remain a part of the Communion.

Episcopalian bishops talk of schism over gay rights,1,151694.story?coll=chi-newsnationworld-hed&ctrack=1&cset=true

[Chicago Tribune] 21 Feb 2007--Several leading liberal Episcopalians said Tuesday that they would rather accept a schism than accede to a demand from leaders of the worldwide Anglican Communion for a rollback of the U.S. church's position on gay rights.

Same-sex edict worries Bay Area Episcopalians

[San Francisco Chronicle] 21 Feb 2007--The Anglican Communion's directive this week that its Episcopal branch in the United States ban the blessing of same-sex unions is a direct rebuke to the Bay Area, where the Diocese of California has blessed the practice for nearly three decades.

A church torn in two

[KRT Wire] 21 February 2007--For decades, a sign outside this light-filled, two-story house of worship proclaimed it "St. Stephen's Episcopal Church" - spiritual home to a congregation of longtime friends and neighbors who often watched movies together, walked the beach or shared meals in this middle-class military town on Whidbey Island.

But that was before the rift - before deeply held differences over the ordination of a gay bishop officially ended the congregation as it had existed since 1952.

Anglicans send ultimatum on homosexuality

[Spero News] 21 Feb 2007--The document calls for the U.S. Episcopal bishops to make an unequivocal common covenant that the bishops will not authorize any Rite of Blessing for same-sex unions.

Anglican Head Comments on Concluding Document

[The Christian Post] 21 Feb 2007--Following the release of a conclusive communiqué on Monday, the Anglican Communion leader clarified that recommendations in the document are a "package," rather than a single proposal to help resolve divisions around the Episcopal Church.

Anglican rift may hit Canada, archbishop says

[Globe and Mail] 21 Feb 2007--The spiritual leader of Canada's 800,000 Anglicans warned them yesterday they face the same risk as their U.S. counterparts of being booted out of the world Anglican Communion unless they slam their church doors against full acceptance of homosexuals.

Head of Episcopal Church asks for patience after Anglican demands to end support for gays

[Boston Herald] 21 Feb 2007--The head of the Episcopal Church asked church members for patience Tuesday after fellow Anglican leaders demanded the U.S. denomination step back from its support of gays or risk losing its full membership in the world Anglican fellowship.

Episcopal Leaders Expect Anglican Schism,0,5230638.story?coll=hc-headlines-life

[Hartford Courant] 21 Feb 2007--Is the American Episcopal Church headed for a schism with its worldwide Anglican parent?

Further details from Tanzania

[EV News] 21 Feb 2007--Key Recommendations of the Primates.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Anglican leaders say U.S. church must do more to end rift over Bible, gays

[Napa Valley Register] 19 Feb 2007--Anglican leaders demanded Monday that the U.S. Episcopal Church unequivocally bar official prayers for gay couples and stop consecrating any more gay bishops to undo the damage North Americans have caused the Anglican family.

Primates Communiqué from Tanzania

[EV News] 19 Feb 2007--We believe several factors must be faced together. First, the Episcopal Church has taken seriously the recommendations of the Windsor Report, and we express our gratitude for the consideration by the 75th General Convention.

However, secondly, we believe that there remains a lack of clarity about the stance of The Episcopal Church, especially its position on the authorisation of Rites of Blessing for persons living in same-sex unions. There appears to us to be an inconsistency between the position of General Convention and local pastoral provision. We recognise that the General Convention made no explicit resolution about such Rites and in fact declined to pursue resolutions which, if passed, could have led to the development and authorisation of them. However, we understand that local pastoral provision is made in some places for such blessings. It is the ambiguous stance of The Episcopal Church which causes concern among us.

The standard of teaching stated in Resolution 1.10 of the Lambeth Conference 1998 asserted that the Conference “cannot advise the legitimising or blessing of same sex unions”. The primates stated in their pastoral letter of May 2003,

“The Archbishop of Canterbury spoke for us all when he said that it is through liturgy that we express what we believe, and that there is no theological consensus about same sex unions. Therefore, we as a body cannot support the authorisation of such rites.”.

Report of the Covenant Design Group

[Anglican Communion News Service] 19 Feb 2007--The Covenant Design Group, appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury on behalf of the Primates of the Anglican Communion, held its first meeting in Nassau, the Bahamas, between Monday, 15th and Thursday, 18th January, 2007. The Archbishop of the West Indies, the Most Revd Drexel Gomez, chaired the group.

Related article:
Anglican Covenant Design Group - EV News

Schori triumphs in Dar as new Anglican queen

[Times Online] 19 Feb 2007--So far from being excluded from the Primates' Meeting in Dar es Salaam, I can break the news that TEC Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori has been elected onto the all-important policy-making Standing Committee. 'Next thing you know, Benedict will be reversing Apostolicae Curae,' said one observer.

Related articles:
American Primate elected to Standing Committee - EV News
Bishop Jefferts Schori elected to Primates' Standing Committee - daily episcopalian

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Reeling on the ropes

[Telegraph] 17 Feb 2007--The new report has been seen as a masterstroke by Dr Williams, who has robbed the conservatives of much of their momentum and morale.

If indeed it is a "masterstroke" by Dr. Williams, it may in the long term cost him dearly. To accept The Episcopal Church's appearance of compliance to the recommendations of the Windsor Report as actual compliance, is only going to exacerbate the global South's growing disenchantment with the leadership of Canterbury.

Communion Broken, Says Global South

[The Living Church] 17 Feb 2007--Members of the Global South coalition of Anglican primates, meeting in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, released a statement today stating they could not share “in the Holy Communion” with their fellow primates today due to the presence of Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

A Confused Report: Initial comments on the Communion Sub-group Report

[Global South Anglican] 17 Feb 2007--In presenting the Report in such convoluted format, the Subgroup pays little attention to the faithful in the Communion worldwide. I wonder how the report will read when it is translated to different languages where there are major concentrations of Anglicans. How would those legal niceties and processes look after translation? Would they be still valid? Does not this expose the cultural bias and prejudice in the present Communion, that as I have argued, the Communion is structured to favour the Anglo-American alliance?

Friday, February 16, 2007

Akinola Press Statement

[Stand Firm] 16 Feb 2007--A number of the Global South primates have not shared in the Holy Eucharist today with their fellow primates. They include Abp. Peter Akinola, Abp John Chew, Abp. Benjamin Nzimbi, Abp Justice Akrofi, Abp. Henry Orombi, Abp. Gregory Venables, and Abp. Emmanuel Kolini. They represent more than 30 million faithful Anglicans. They have released this statement....

Akinola meets with conservative group during Meeting

[Stand Firm] 16 Feb 2007--Archbishop Peter Akinola has been meeting with conservative Anglican leaders today. It is not known exactly with whom he is meeting, because they are in a secured area behind closed doors.

Bishop Duncan Leaves Tanzania without Speaking to Journalists

[Stand Firm] 16 Feb 2007--Bishop Bob Duncan of Pittsburgh, the leader of a breakaway faction which had wanted the communion to recognise his supporters as the genuine representatives of the US church, left for the airport without speaking to journalists.

More articles from Stand Firm can be found at

Evaluation of the latest happenings at Tanzania (16 February) and some editorial comments

[Global South Anglican] 16 Feb 2007--The Communion Sub-Group has released their findings. The Primates who will have to make a decision, bearing in mind that the Windsor Process was set up to ‘heal the tear in the fabric’ of the Communion. We can have every trust in the Primates to make a right one. I wont name them here, but those who have been privileged to know some of them up close will know that they are godly, wise and astute in their judgment and leadership. Their commitment to orthodoxy and what is best for the Church is unquestioned. Up till now, we should notice that none has made their opinions known in public, safe for this outcry from ++Hutchinson (Canada). If I can say it respectfully, to throw the issue of poverty (or any other ills for the matter) into the discussion is strange indeed. The Primates are still deliberating and the best kind of work are often done quietly. Let’s keep on praying. I believe it is not about which side is losing or winning. It is about coming out of this mess a stronger, biblical and more orthodox Anglican Communion, a hope which many of us share. - TW

Other analysis, responses and comments on the report can be found here....

I would definitely check out this analysis, responses, and comments on the Communion Sub-Group's report. I would also take note of Presiding Bishop Jeffert Schori's position on same sex unions in the preceding articles.

Anglican Report Avoids Schism, Snubs Conservatives,_Snubs_Conservatives.htm

[The Christian Post] 16 February 2007--The long-awaited response from U.S. Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori was revealed in a report by the Anglican Communion sub-group, headed by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, spiritual leader of the world's 77 million Anglicans. According to the report, the Episcopal Church expressed "regret for straining the bonds of affection in the events surrounding the General Convention of 2003 and the consequences which followed." The 2003 consecration of an openly gay bishop was at the height of the controversy, causing divisions within the Anglican Communion.

It went on to say that the Episcopal Church offers its "sincerest apology" to those offended and "ask[s] forgiveness."

With the impression that the Episcopal Church vows not to repeat the offense, the sub-group stated that the U.S. body's expression of regret is "sufficient" to meet the request of the primates.

Related articles:
Did ECUSA comply with Windsor? - EV News,,-6419393,00.html
Anglican Leaders Discuss Stance on Gays - Guardian Unlimited,1299,DRMN_15_5355436,00.html
Anglican leader stands by her views on gays - Rocky Mountain News
Anglican leaders discuss U.S. church's liberal stance on gays - International Herald Tribune

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Anglicans face 'a bit of pruning' over gay rights

[Globe and Mail] 14 Feb 2007--Primates from the southern hemisphere have been pushing the North American Anglican churches toward the exit door since the Episcopal Church, as Anglicanism is called in the United States, elected an openly gay bishop in 2003, while the bishop of New Westminster, B.C., approved the blessing of same-sex unions.

New Anglican church forming in Newnan

[The Citizen] 14 Feb 2007--A new Anglican Church fellowship has formed in Newnan in association with the Anglican Mission in the Americas.

Archbishop faces Church split

[The Telegraph] 14 Feb 2007--The Archbishop of Canterbury arrived at a critical Anglican summit yesterday looking increasingly likely to back a "parallel" Church for conservatives, a move that will appal liberals.

Episcopal Church's Lawsuit Called 'Un-Christian''s_Lawsuit_Called_'Un-Christian'.htm

[The Christian Post] 14 Feb 2007--New lawsuits filed by The Episcopal Church against the latest exodus of churches over church property did not surprise the breakaway Anglicans but one defendant called it "un-Christian."

Primates' Session with Episcopal Bishops Changed to Thursday

[The Living CHurch] 14 Feb 2007--The extra-curricular session with three bishops from The Episcopal Church has been changed from Wednesday afternoon to Thursday morning, according to the Rt. Rev. Robert Duncan, Bishop of Pittsburgh and moderator of the Anglican Communion Network. The change of date for the special session during the Anglican primates’ meeting was announced last week, but was not widely publicized. No further information was available at press time.

Time for Anglicans to divorce

[Times Online] 14 Feb 2007--This is a longer version of an oped in the paper today. There is also a news story about the Primates, on how Sentamu might be excluded from the meeting and the significance of Archbishop Okoh's arrival in Tanzania.

In case of spiritual crisis....

[Times Online] 14 Feb 2007--This cross in a glass case, photographed by the AAC's David Anderson, happens quite by chance to be in the Beach Comber hotel in Dar es Salaam where the Global South lobby has been staying. Things are really hotting up over there. An unexpected visitor at the White Sands resort is Archbishop Nicholas Okoh, Archbishop of Bendel in Nigeria. He is one of the nine archbishops in the Church of Nigeria who are led by the Primate of All Nigeria, Peter Akinola. He has nine dioceses in his province. Before becoming a Bishop, Archbishop Okoh was a colonel in the Nigerian army. Global South delegates are saying privately that his presence is in response to the trend begun by Rowan Williams in flying in with the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu. Expect all Archbishop Okoh's military expertise to be brought to bear in this war when battle commences tomorrow, Thursday morning. "Something is afoot," an insider told me. "Nigerians do not fly Archbishops around the world just to carry their bags." Dr Rowan Williams, who as Archbishop of Canterbury and the Communion's "focus for unity", asked for prayers when he flew in this morning. He's going to need them, I fear.

Related article:
Primates: Schismatics to be "pruned from the branch" - Times Online

Global South Will Propose Two-Province Solution

[The Living Church] 14 Feb 2007--Anglican primates of The Global South will propose a two-province solution to the divisions of doctrine and discipline confronting The Episcopal Church at this week's primates' meeting in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Alternate Primates’ Meeting Agenda Proposed

[The Living Church] 14 Feb 2007--The dismissal of Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and Archbishop of York John Sentamu will be among the first items under discussion in an alternate agenda proposed by the Global South coalition for the primates’ meeting in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Church must confront this clash of convictions

[Sydney Morning Herald] 14 Feb 2007--Christians sometimes have to decide that the truth of some major issue does not permit them to have unity with each other in the same way as before. We must be welcoming, but we cannot embrace indifference about doctrine and hope to survive.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Bishop ready to defend herself, Episcopal Church

[] 12 Feb 2007--At a book party last week at the New York headquarters of the Episcopal Church, a line of more than 100 fans waited to have the church's new presiding bishop, Katharine Jefferts Schori, sign copies of her new book of sermons, A Wing and a Prayer.

"'We have had gay bishops and gay clergy for millennia,' she said. 'The willingness to be open about that is more recent.'

She said opposition came primarily from a "handful of primates," led by Archbishop Peter Akinola of Nigeria, with support from those in Uganda and Rwanda. She said they had made it appear as if the bulk of the Anglican Communion was arrayed against the Americans, when that was not the case. "

Oh, I am dizzy from all the spin. Or does she believe what she is saying?

Two Strands of Faith? No, Two Different Religions

[] 12 Feb 2007--Here is the most revealing section of the article:

She sees two strands of faith: One is "most concerned with atonement, that Jesus died for our sins and our most important task is to repent." But the other is "the more gracious strand," says the bishop who dresses like a sunrise.

It "is to talk about life, to claim the joy and the blessings for good that it offers, to look forward.

"God became human in order that we may become divine. That's our task."

So the bishop sees "two strands of faith" within Christianity. The major problem with this is the fact that her "more gracious strand" simply bears no resemblance to biblical Christianity. The problem is that she rejects the very heart of the Gospel, "that Jesus died for our sins."

815 files more lawsuits against all the "Virginia churches" just days before Primates Meeting in Tanzania

[BabyBlueOnline] 12 Feb 2007--Katharine Jefferts Schori and the folks at 815 (based in their lovely offices in Manhattan), filed more lawsuits yesterday here in Virginia against all the parishes (their clergy, vestries, and trustees) that followed the Diocese of Virginia's Protocol for Departing Churches. So along with Bishop Lee and the Diocese of Virginia, now 815 (TEC) has sued everybody as well. That's a nice thing to do before getting on the plane for Tanzania.

Another Local Anglican Parish Separates from US Episcopal Church

[Christianity Today UK] 12 Feb 2007--The downward spiral of the Episcopal Church in the USA has continued as a local parish, St Andrew’s-in-the-Pines, voted 145 to 67 (or 68 per cent) to separate from the national church and the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta.

Tiny Northern Neck church stung by Episcoplian division,0,3922120.story?coll=dp-headlines-virginia

[Daily Press] 12 February 2006--First, the fight. Then, the separation. Then, lawyers filing papers in court about property.

Anglican Heads Prepare for a Make or Break

[The Christian Post] 12 Feb 2006--Most Anglican bishops in the Global South have already expressed their firm stance against homosexuality and made a call to resolve the issue soon. But the head of southern Africa is arguing for harmony and acceptance.

Related articles:
Nigeria to Adhere to "Road to Lambeth" - Stand Firm

Canada could play a key role as divided Anglican bishops meet

[Toronto Star] 12 Feb 2006--Spurred on by the outspoken bishop of Nigeria as his continent grows in influence within the church, the conservative wing of the Anglican Church is openly threatening schism over gay rights as a pivotal meeting of bishops from around the world opens this week.

Archbishop battles to ward off final Anglican split on homosexuality,,2011137,00.html

[Guardian Unlimited] 12 Feb 2007--The Archbishop of Canterbury's hopes this week of preventing the 78 million-strong worldwide Anglican communion from finally sliding into schism over the issue of homosexuality appeared slim yesterday as he prepared to fly to Tanzania for a meeting of the church's primates.