Canterbury must say ‘enough’!

Glenn Davies

I was going to respond to the invitation of David Palmer to respond to last fortnight's blog entries concerning the ACNA's Fundamental Declarations in their Constitution. However, other events in the 76th TEC General Convention in California have taken priority.

Last weekend we learned that the House of Deputies (clergy and lay representatives of the convention) effectively recommended an end to the moratorium on the consecration of gay bishops, established by Resolution B033 in 2006 in response to a recommendation of the Windsor Report, calling upon Bishops and Standing Committees to 'exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion.'

This week we now learn that the House of Bishops followed that lead by a 2/3 majority (99 to 45 with 2 abstentions) by passing resolution D025, which reads in part:

Resolved, That the 76th General Convention affirm that God has called and may call such individuals [viz., gay and lesbian persons living in lifelong committed relationships], to any ordained ministry in The Episcopal Church; and that God’s call to the ordained ministry in The Episcopal Church is a mystery which the Church attempts to discern for all people through our discernment processes acting in accordance with the Constitution and Canons of The Episcopal Church.

A report of the debate in the House of Bishops may be found at Stand Firm.

Well at last the TEC has expressed its mind and made it abundantly clear that gay and lesbians in committed relationships are not only welcome members of the church but whose lifestyle does not preclude them from ordination to the ministry, in defiance of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Primates and the Lambeth Conference.

If that was not enough to get the heart racing, in her opening address to the TEC General Conference Presiding Bishop Schori has derided individual salvation calling it 'the great Western heresy: that we can be saved as individuals, that any of us alone can be in right relationship with God'. According to Schori it is a heresy to believe that an individual can be saved through personal faith and trust in Jesus Christ acknowledged in a prayer of repentance.

Surely the time has come for Abp Rowan Williams to stop prevaricating and say enough is enough! There is already a motion to come before the English General Synod in February 2010 to recognise the Church of England as being in communion with ACNA. Will a similar motion de-recognise communion with TEC?

They and their leader do not proclaim, let alone believe, the faith once for all delivered to the saints!