Dr. Stephen Noll from TitusOneNine:
I do not want to set this thread off on a rabbit trail, but I would like to draw attention to one of the Curmudgeon’s comments regarding whether Mr. Tisdale was authorized to act on behalf of TEC, which goes back to the question of whether David Booth Beers is authorized to act as “Chancellor of TEC.”
No members of the Church, either acting on their own, or acting collectively through their triennial assembly called "General Convention", have ever hired David Booth Beers to represent the whole Church, or to hire others to do so. Not only that, but there is no official position that has ever been created and called "Chancellor of the Episcopal Church (USA)". Thus, by definition, there cannot lawfully be any person who is entitled to claim that he is "South Carolina counsel for The Episcopal Church." At best, Mr. Tisdale is acting as South Carolina counsel for the Presiding Bishop's personal chancellor.
There seems to me to be a common thread between this assumption of power by DBB and that of the Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion.
Recently, Bp. Mouneer Anis resigned from “The Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion.” It is clear that Bp. Mouneer is not making up this title and its acronym (SCAC) but is reflecting the view of that group from which he resigned. This is confirmed by the (unpublished) Minutes of that group immediately before and after ACC-14 in Jamaica. Meeting on 29 April-1 May, 2009, the minutes speak of “The Joint Standing Committee of The Primates & The Anglican Consultative Council”; meeting after ACC-14 on 12 May, the minutes refer to “The Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion.”
This change of terminology is obliquely justified in ACC Resolutaion 14.39a, which states that “the former Joint Standing Committee” is named as the “Standing Committee” under the new constitution.” Interestingly, the new [unpublished] ACC constitution does not directly name its Standing Committee as “The Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion,” although it does refer to the “Secretary General of the Anglican Communion,” rather than the Secretary General of the ACC.
My question, following the lines of Mr. Haley’s argument, is this: can anyone produce documentation that the Lambeth Conference or the Primates' Meeting or even the ACC (apart from the oblique reference in 14.39 above) has ever established the position of “The Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion” – or for that matter, the Joint Standing Committee that preceded it – much less given its terms of reference?
For instance, we know that the ACC admits five Primates to its new Standing Committee, but by what resolution of the Primates' Meeting was the number five chosen, and was that number chosen intentionally to give the Primates a minority voice when compared to the nine members of the ACC Standing Committee. And how was it decided that these five should represent five particular regions, quite unequal in numbers?
The relevance is this: under the “final” Covenant, the Provinces are being asked to hand over primary oversight of the Covenant to a body that has no constitutional foundation and whose composition is unclear, apart perhaps from the (as yet unpublished) Constitution of one of the Instruments of Communion.
Back to the Curmudgeon and South Carolina. I think the assumption of power in TEC and the assumption of power in the Anglican Communion are similar. This is not strange, considering it is people with the same mindset pulling the strings in the national and the Communion bureaucracies.