Conservative UK Anglicans call for ‘decisive’ break with TEC (US)
Fulcrum, a conservative British Anglican group, issued a leadership team statement Friday arguing that “the election of Mary Glasspool as bishop suffragan in the diocese of Los Angeles” is a bad-faith break by The Episcopal Church (USA) with the larger Anglican Communion.
They argued that Glasspool’s election violates the terms of The Windsor Report, which was written in response to the consecration of Gene Robinson, the first openly gay, noncelibate priest to be ordained as an Anglican bishop, in the Episcopal Church in the United States and the blessing of same-sex unions in the Diocese of New Westminster. The report recommended a moratorium on the election of additional homosexual bishops.
Fulcrum asserts that TEC promised to maintain that moratorium:
It is important that this is not simply a matter of disagreement about biblical interpretation and sexual ethics although these are central and important. It is now very clearly also a fundamental matter of truth-telling and trust. In September 2007, at the Primates’ request and after meeting with the Archbishop of Canterbury, TEC bishops confirmed they would “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”. They made clear that “non-celibate gay and lesbian persons” were among such candidates.
As a result, Fulcrum further argues, in effect, that a break by the larger communion with TEC is required:
In fact, the situation is now such that it may be better for the Archbishop simply to state – as one of the Instruments and a focus and means of unity – that TEC as a body has rejected the Communion’s repeated appeals for restraint, made false promises, and confirmed its direction is away from Communion teaching and accountability. It has thereby rendered itself incapable of covenanting with other churches and made it unclear what it means when it claims to be in communion with the see of Canterbury and a constituent member of the Anglican Communion.
They conclude by calling for guidance from Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, possibly declaring that TEC has made it clear that it has elected to ‘walk apart’ from the rest of the Anglican Communion. Or some other unstated “decisive action.”
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