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ACC12 Affirms Archbishop of Canterbury's Resolution

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    CALLED OUT From the Anglican News Service ... October 1, 2002 ACC12 Affirms Archbishop of Canterbury s Resolution from Margaret Rodgers at ACC-12 in Hong Kong
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 1, 2002
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      CALLED OUT

      From the Anglican News Service

      -----------

      October 1, 2002
      ACC12 Affirms Archbishop of Canterbury's Resolution
      from Margaret Rodgers at ACC-12 in Hong Kong


      ACC members strongly affirmed the resolution moved by the Archbishop
      of Canterbury that called for individual dioceses in the Anglican
      Communion not to take unilateral action or adopt policies that would
      strain 'our communion with one another' without reference to their
      provincial authorities. It called on all dioceses to keep in mind
      'the impact of their decisions within the wider Communion.'

      In his Presidential Address to the Anglican Consultative Council some
      days earlier Archbishop Carey, when discussing this matter, drew
      attention to the synodical decision in the Diocese of New
      Westminster, Canada, calling for the blessing of same-sex unions;
      actions taken by the Bishop of Pennsylvania in the Episcopal Church,
      USA; and the synodical call for lay presidency [administration] in
      the Diocese of Sydney, Australia.

      When the vote on the resolution was taken, all hands were raised in
      favour, apart from one abstaining vote from Bishop Catherine Roskam,
      Suffragen Bishop of New York.

      Fr Don Bolen, official Vatican observer at the ACC meeting said that
      "the Catholic Church smiles on this resolution." He pointed out that
      local decisions and policies by individual dioceses can have
      ecumenical implications and that some local decisions can weaken the
      koinonia (communion) between the respective Churches. Though he
      indicated Roman Catholic support for Archbishop Carey's motion he
      stated that it still fell far short of 'ecumenical consultation.'

      Bishop Michael Ingham, Bishop of New Westminster, gave his support to
      the motion and voted for it. But he indicated that he was concerned
      that the resolution did not appear to recognise the autonomy of the
      local church to determine priorities for mission in the local
      context. He referred obliquely to the statement of the 3rd ACC
      meeting in Dublin that stated "the responsibility for mission in any
      place belongs primarily to the church in that place."

      He told members that the English Reformation itself was 'an example
      of local option.'

      "It is important to balance the need for coherence and credibility
      with freedom for change," Bishop Ingham said, "and change always
      begins locally."

      Bishop Ingham also said that he had consulted the provincial
      authorities in his part of the Anglican Church in Canada.

      In response to the speeches Archbishop Carey thanked the Vatican
      observer for his supporting comments upon the motion, and also
      expressed his thanks to Bishop Ingham.

      "Theologically I disagree with the word 'autonomy'," Archbishop Carey
      said. "Autonomy means separate churches. Here I am closer to Fr Bolen
      than I am to Bishop Michael."

      "This Council has been all about interdependence," Dr Carey said.

      Archbishop Carey said Bishop Ingham did not consult widely about his
      issue. He had not consulted the Primates' Meeting, the ACC, or the
      Archbishop of Canterbury 'one of the central planks of Anglican
      unity.'


      TEXT OF RESOLUTION:

      This Council, being concerned about a range of matters of faith and
      order which have arisen since we last met, and having in mind the
      constant emphasis on mutual responsibility and interdependence in the
      resolutions of successive Lambeth Conferences, from the call in 1867
      for "unity in faith and discipline . . . by due and canonical
      subordination of synods" (1867, IV) to the call in 1998 for a "common
      mind concerning ethical issues where contention threatens to
      divide..." (1998, IV 5 (c) calls upon:

      1 Dioceses and individual bishops not to undertake unilateral actions
      or adopt policies which would strain our communion with one another
      without reference to their provincial authorities, and

      2 Provincial authorities to have in mind the impact of their
      decisions
      within the wider communion, and 3. All members of the Communion, even
      in our disagreements to have in mind the "need for courtesy,
      tolerance, mutual respect and prayer for one another" (1998, III.2
      (e)).
      _________________________________________________________
      The ACNSlist is published by the Anglican Communion Office, London.


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