I have pretty much given up on Abp. Williams. The recent political machinations of the Archbishop of Canterbury, including his petty slights to the Presiding Bishop (some of them
truly petty), are one thing. Add Canon Kearon's informing the Episcopal Church's Executive Council (in a meeting he tried to have behind closed doors)that TEC's relegation to second-tier status will not be limited to the sanctions thus far and that the "problem of increased and growing diversity in the Anglican Communion has been an issue for many years....[and that]" by the 1990s leaders in the communion "had begun to name 'the diversity of opinions in the communion and diversity in general as a problem and sought some mechanisms to address it.'" Now add his last ditch effort to peel some of the required 2/3 votes off of legislation to allow consecration of women bishops to create overlapping bishoprics so that anti-women bishop parishes may secede from the diocese while urging that the far more radical Anglican Covenant be adopted by a simple majority of votes at Synod. (1)
Williams, surprisingly to those of us who welcomed his selection, has spent his arch-episcopal tenure living up to Pete Townshend's depressing image of religious authority here:
How sad. He could have been a true shepherd, and not just a man in a purple dress.
(1) Williams' position is all the more notable since he has written that the "diocese is the organ of union with the wider church" and yet is willing to fragment it, meanwhile making it easier to radically change the relationship of Church of England to the other members of the Communion to a juridicial one on a fast track, while drawing out and requiring a supermajority to approve the consecration of female bishops, the logic of which is pretty inexorable in view of the prior decision to ordain women to the priesthood.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Well, I just has a two-week involuntary hiatus, and what happens? Well, essentially, the entire Anglican Communion goes nuts. Meanwhile, my friend Nathan Humphrey tries to urge us all to consider relationship over rightness. As the responses he generates show, rightness is winning the straw poll. I appreciate Nathan's effort to reach both sides, but it seems to me that he's bucking the tide, quite possibly on the Progressive side as well as on the Reasserter. My own views on this is that the level of hostility toward TEC suggests that relationship at this point may not be a viable option, for now. We may need to take a break from each other, and let history--and the Holy Spirit--lead us to the next phase. It's sad to me that this is where we are, but I think the emotions in the air may require a time out. I certainly don't believe we should be the whipping boy for the Communion, but that we should remain always open to reconciliation.