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clarity and grace on ALPO

You may remember the meeting that took place September 11-13 in New York, in which bishops discussed the requests for "alternative primatial oversight" (which Father Jake so wonderfully dubbed 'ALPO'). Bishop Jack Iker of Fort Worth after that meeting announced that he would not participate in any more such meetings, and in response to an invitation to meet again this month, he and Bishop Bob Duncan of Pittsburgh publicized this pointed letter declining to take part, and indeed saying that "additional parties," including legal counsel, would have to accompany them to any future meetings.

The meeting took place anyway, and out of it came a proposal that, in my opinion, is in the classic style of our Presiding Bishop: it is clear about our polity, it includes lay leadership (namely the President of the House of Deputies and the Executive Council) in its implementation, and it is gracious in granting voluntarily everything I can think of that our polity allows. It also gets bonus points for dropping Bishop Stanton's "Commissary" language with its unfortunate nostalgia for colonialism, instead calling for the appointment of a Primatial Vicar. The "Primatial Vicar" language leaves unnamed which primate(s) the vicar is representing, and I'm guessing that this is intentional. As long as the arrangement can be read with integrity as being that the Vicar is serving The Episcopal Church's Primate, it doesn't violate our polity; as long as the arrangement can be read with integrity as having the Vicar representing or serving as liaison with the Archbishop of Canterbury, it's coming as close as possible to what the petitioning provinces requested; and similarly there's maximum "room for grace" given to petitioning dioceses as long as it can be read with integrity that the Vicar is performing some "Primatial" functions. The only such function specifically named in the statement being that of serving as chief consecrator; however, in our polity, our Presiding Bishop doesn't do much domestically that could be called "Primatial" in any case, which was a sticking point for conservatives as well as progressives in requests for "alternative primatial oversight."

In other words, while Bishops Iker and Duncan were refusing to come to the table, the Presiding Bishop and others were nonetheless discussing what our polity could allow that might meet their concerns -- at least, the ones they've articulated formally in their request to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

You can read the proposal and a statement from the bishops who drafted it here.

November 30, 2006 in Churchiness, Current Affairs | Permalink

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» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release is also available here. The ... [Read More]

Tracked on Nov 30, 2006 6:56:02 PM

» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release is also available here. The ... [Read More]

Tracked on Nov 30, 2006 6:59:48 PM

» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release is also available here. The ... [Read More]

Tracked on Nov 30, 2006 7:02:43 PM

» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
Updated Friday morning The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release is al... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 1, 2006 6:03:41 PM

» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
Updated again Friday evening The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 1, 2006 6:59:28 PM

» APO: reactions to Primatial Vicar proposal from Thinking Anglicans
Updated again Friday evening The Anglican Communion Network issued a press release at 3.30 pm (EST assumed?) which was headlined National Church Response Falls Short and subtitled From the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh. The same release... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 1, 2006 7:50:02 PM

Comments

afraid this was already offered and rejected by the network. no forward progress, i'm afraid

Posted by: trooper | Nov 30, 2006 8:46:40 PM

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