Monday, 26 March 2012

You know it never made sense

Reading Andrew Goddard's piece this morning, it is hard to avoid the fact that we are in an immense state of confusion not despite the covenant process but rather because of it.

Consider the following two statements alone, which as Andrew observes, follow from the English vote against the covenant:

• The Church of England remains a full member of the Communion.

• Although the CofE’s representatives cannot now participate in decision-making about the covenant within the Instruments of Communion, the Archbishop of Canterbury, as an Instrument rather than a provincial representative, may be able to do so.

Archbishop peter Jensen was surely right when he observed, ages ago, that where radical and decisive action was called for, the Communion was led into vacillation.

I'm also reminded of something someone who moves in more exalted circles in the governance of the Church of England said to me recently: "Liberals believe they are on a roll. They almost have women bishops, they believe the covenant will be defeated. The next item on the agenda is same-sex relationships."

"Here we go, here we go, here we go," anyone?

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  1. Sadly it is all fudge and no faithful service, it seems. Sometimes you have to winder if Rome got it right with authoritative rule.

  2. Does this mean another tranche signing up for the Ordinariate?

  3. Anybody care to support Archbishop Peter Jensen for the next ABC? After all, it wasn't until the RC church began to look outside Italy for a leader that the church revived, a bit. Otherwise, who else?

  4. How about campaigning for philip jenson? people might not realize until it's too late!

  5. John, your clock is a bit strange. I wasn't actually up at 5.29 am to post, more like 11.29 am, or perhaps you run at Eastern Standard Time.

    Possibly Jenson Button, more popular than either. It was, however, a serious suggestion - surely there are GAFCON primates (who, after all, represent far more Anglicans than any English bishop) who ought to be considered.

  6. Gregory Venables is an evangelical who won the respect of orthodox anglo-catholics when providing alternative oversight a few years ago. He is 62.

    But what about your own +Richard Chartres? He is 64 and would need an extension to get him to Lambeth, but he has provided strong leadership in difficult times, he has the respect of influential people in England including members of the royal family, and evangelicals in Dio. London have been able to work with him. An ABC who can't win the trust of conservative evangelicals will fail.

    There is also John Sentamu. He is aged 62 and has recently shown that he is prepared to speak out on his own for what he believes, albeit somewhat hesitantly.

    Also, does ABC have to already be a bishop? Richard Turnbull of Wycliff Hall is aged 52 and seems to have done a good job of turning it around. We have found in Sydney that deans of theological colleges sometimes make very effective archbishops.

  7. Richard, perhaps Gregory Venables?

    Although he is evangelical, he earned a great deal of respect from anglo-catholic dioceses in USA to whom he gave alternative oversight a few years ago. They found it very easy to work under his authority and clearly retain a great deal of affection for him. And he already has experience as a provincial primate.

    An orthodox evangelical who can win the trust and respect of anglo-catholics may be just what CofE needs.