Canterbury: Thoughtful, Measured, Pastoral

Most of the reactions to the Archbishop of Canterbury’s recent reflections on the state of the Anglican Communion have been pretty predictable,.  Liberals think he’s “scolding” The Episcopal Church and conservatives don’t think he’s gone far enough in writing us off.

I actually think his remarks were thoughtful, measured, and generally pastoral. He seems to have read the actual legislation passed by General Convention carefully, and to have taken seriously the commentary on them produced by the Presiding Bishop and President of the House of Deputies.  I entirely concur with their analysis of what we did, and did not, do.

I am more sanguine about those decisions than Rowan Williams, but that is not the point. He has taken the time to understand them and  has attributed the best possible motives behind them, even while disagreeing with some of the actions we have taken.  I certainly do not believe he is pushing, or desires, a “two tiered” or even a “two track” solution to our Communion’s future. Nor do I.

However, it makes perfect sense to look at options for the future, particularly in a “less than apocalyptic,” cataclysmic way.  I hope we will still be able to find a way to sign on to an eventual Anglican Covenant and that those commitments will provide guidance for our future actions, and the actions of other Provinces around the Communion.

However, if it proves politically impossible to get The Episcopal Church (or other Provinces) to adopt an eventual Covenant, we need to find realistic, workable possibilities for a Anglican future which has the best chance of making a relatively uniited witness to the world and encourage missional cooperation whenever, and wherever, possible.  

I appreciate, and am grateful for, the Archbishop’s perspective and contribution to this ongoing discussion which will, no doubt, occupy much of our attention in the months and years ahead.

3 Responses to “Canterbury: Thoughtful, Measured, Pastoral”

  1. JB Says:

    Good reflection, I think. Unfortunately, we seem to be in the small minority regarding the +++ABC’s letter.

  2. rwk Says:

    Hopefully the ABC’s options for a less than cataclysmic outcome include a place for those of us who could no longer follow TEC’s path.

  3. ecubishop Says:

    Seems to me that’s what he has in mind.

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