Sunday, 16 January 2011

It’s Broken. Fix it! The Anglican Communion Institute on the Primates' Meeting

... What is the truly serious area of concern is this: the claim that, given the character of e.g. the Archbishop of Canter bury, there is nothing that can be done about the Meeting. The Archbishop of Canterbury is held to be an immovable force, impregnable and beyond challenge. The effect of this is to give him an authority virtually beyond the scale of the Bishop of Rome. A council of the church, if we are right in holding that the Primates’ Meeting is such, is not really a council and cannot be, according to this view. The will of the Primates cannot, must not, be capable of expression. The iron hand of the Archbishop of Canterbury is beyond the reach of fellow Primates. If Hilary were to appear in Dublin as the Athanasius of the West, in the very nature of the case he would have to be defeated and sent packing.

It matters little in such an understanding of the situation whether ten, one, or twenty were not to appear. If the Primates Meeting is not really a Council of the Church and if the Archbishop of Canterbury has the power to defeat any influence from those fellow Bishops whose actual leadership and authority in the Provinces is not in question, then it must be renamed. It is The Archbishop of Canterbury Meeting. And if this is the true state of affairs, will the Primates as a total body accede to this? Read more

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