The recent statement by the ABC puts to rest the Communion Partners notion that you can be part of pecusa and a full partner in the Anglican Communion under the two tier system. It should also be a wake-up call to dioceses like Albany, SC, Central Florida and the like. ed.
Thursday, October 01, 2009
After the last TEC GenCon the leadership of the few remaining "orthodox" dioceses within TEC (e.g., South Carolina) started talking about ways of "differentiating" themselves further from the national trends of TEC. In almost every case that differentiation was either completely symbolic (e.g., adoption of a formal statement clarifying the meanings of a word or two in the ordination vows taken by ordinands in that diocese) or the proposals were so vague as to amount to little at present (e.g., increase "co-operation" with Anglicans outside of TEC, etc.). [I have previously reflected on Bishop Lawrence's proposals here.]
Only one thing these orthodox TEC leaders suggested even had a hope of one day truly meaning something "on the ground"--a diocesan-level endorsement of the proposed Anglican Covenant,which national TEC will surely ultimately reject if it has any "teeth" at all. Perhaps ten years from now that kind of diocesan action might actually matter in some way, I thought. Just possibly the Covenant's adoption by South Carolina and other "orthodox" TEC entities might help them to remain part of orthodox Anglicanism world-wide, I hoped.
But now the Archbishop of Canterbury himself has indicated even such a diocesan endorsement of the Covenant is purely symbolic and will have no "official" meaning. Read this article from the Living Church.
Please, folks still trapped in the these handful of dioceses, it is time to admit the facts. Nothing you can do at the diocesan level will ever make you meaningfully different from the rest of TEC as long as you remain members of the national body. Your bishops are still ultimately answerable to PB Schori. You are still subject to TEC's constitution and canons and to it's disciplinary procedures. And most importantly, the heretical majority of TEC's bishops and standing committees will have an absolute veto over whomever your elect to be your next bishop.
Your staunch defense of orthodoxy could evaporate rapidly if your bishop unexpectedly leaves office. The powers that be will insure that your next bishop is "reasonable" and "moderate"--one of those respectable "conservatives" who politely states his traditionalist positions at church meetings and then faithfully implements whatever the decision of the TEC governing body in question are without further cavil. Once such a "reasonable" bishop is in place a majority of your parish clergy will be cut from the same cloth in less than a decade. By 2025 most of the people still left in the once "orthodox" dioceses of TEC will hardly remember what all this fuss was about.
More purely symbolic declarations are pointless at this juncture. Either act to separate from TEC now or come to terms with where your denomination is inevitably heading. Further resistance inside TEC is futile. The TEC ship has left the shore of traditional Christianity and is rapidly sailing away into the brave, new sunset of radical inclusion. Loudly proclaiming that you are not part of the vessel's journey while you still stand on it's deck watching the shoreline recede is simply a denial of reality. It is time to adjust to your new situation either by making peace with the Good Ship TEC's captain and crew or by jumping ship while you still might make it back home!
posted by texanglican | 7:24 AM