Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Well, well, well: the American Episcopal Church has quietly moved to set aside the Anglican Communion's moratorium on consecrating Gay/lesbian Bishops. Hand on heart I cannot say that came as a huge surprise. They value their freedom and autonomy. The home of the Boston Tea party was never likely to take direction from a Hanoverian appointment easily. What effect will it have? I'm not sure. Separation I doubt: after all, America pays for the Anglican Consultative Council. Kick 'em out and the whole show collapses. Remember the Lambeth Conference finances anyone? And ++Rowan with the begging bowl. Sorry, money talks. 2nd class status? Always a possibility, but if I were American I'd respond to that with a reduction of the donation. Effectively the US Church has defined the direction the Anglican Communion will be going in for the foreseeable future. Scotland's question is where do we point ourselves?

I have very mixed feelings on this: my heart is with America, my head says we stick close in our relationship with the CofE. Again my response is pragmatic: most incomers to the SEC come from the CofE. Split from them and we will suffer. But America has given us a powerful lead in the direction of what it means to be a mission shaped church in a broadly secular world. No barrier of human construction ought be be allowed to continue to obstruct the pathway to God. Part of me thinks the Communion needs an Obama figure - which Rowan isn't. The other day he effectively told Africa: "Your future is in your hands. You have the power and capability to have good government and practice - use it. We'll help you, but stop blaming the Colonial history for everything that's wrong." A message to the Global South might be :"Develop your own theology and stop saying Europeans brought homosexuality to Africa". Do your own grown up theology, rather than repeating what the missionaries taught in just exactly the same way they taught it.


  1. I'll sit on the fence just a little bit more like a good Episcopalian, and be in the company of the College of Bishops no doubt!

  2. Come on, boys - off the fence and onto the barricades!

  3. You're just trying to get us onto the barricades because it's Bastille Day! Vive la revolution!