Comprehensive Unity: The No Anglican Covenant Blog

Monday, January 10, 2011

Overwhelming Support for the Anglican Covenant?

Recently, I heard An English bishop saying that the Covenant debate in the English General Synod was good because a range of views were expressed and articulated, but ultimately people voted for the Covenant, not because they liked it or wanted it but for other reasons, such as to back ++Rowan or to keep open a dialogue. Hence, if it is passed then it will be next to useless because no one seems to actually want it.

It is the fifth time it has come before Synod, and ++Sentamu encouraged the Synod to vote for it even if they didn’t like it, in order to support ++Rowan and to let the Dioceses have a look at it. So in a sense they didn’t vote for the Covenant at all. Looking back they never have:

In 2008 Sentamu said that:
 “a vote to take note of the report would not commit the Church of England to every dot and comma of the document. The C of E was only one of 38 provinces, and it was too early to say what the final text would be. But an enthusiastic “take-note” would indicate general support for the direction of travel set out by the Windsor report, and an affirmation of Dr Williams’s efforts to hold the Communion together.”
 “Dr Tom Wright, almost dared the Synod not to go along with it. It mattered to millions of Christians in a less fortunate position, he said; the Synod had voted “massively” in favour of the Covenant in 2005; no classical Anglican would have embraced the contemporary idea of inclusivity; and if the Synod voted against it, it would be undermining the Archbishop of Canterbury.”

However, back in November 2005 , the vote wasn’t massively in favour of the Covenant – it was to ‘take note’ of it: 
“In the morning, the Synod voted on a motion from the Bishop of Durham, Dr Tom Wright, to welcome the House of Bishops’ response to the Windsor report, accepting the report’s principles; urging the Primates, who will meet next week, to take action in the light of the Windsor recommendations to secure the unity of the Communion; and assured the Archbishop of Canterbury of its prayerful support.”
The ‘overwhelming support’ that has been suggested for the Covenant feels disingenuous to me. I hope, when the document comes to the Dioceses in The Church of England there won’t be a feeling that it must be accepted because the General Synod were so keen on it.



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