Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sorry Rowan I don't agree with you

To illustrate my view on the proposed Anglican Covenant I simply quote these words from Anglican blogger Jared Cramer in his analysis of the flaws in Archbishop Rowan's response to the recent General Convention of the US Episcopal Church:

" I believe the fundamental problem with ++Rowan’s perspective is the idea that “the present structures” have “safeguarded our unity.” Rowan’s faith is in structures to safeguard the church. We should give greater muscles to the Instruments of Unity, or we should sign on to an agreed upon statement and Covenant. If we work hard enough on these structures, they will keep us in community with one another.

The problem is that community is not the sort of thing that will be enforced by structures. Rather, our unity as Christians is safeguarded by a set of Christ-like practices, by an attitude of meekness and humility. To wit, we are safeguarded by being more Christ like. If all within the church began to truly discern the body, to see the grave harm that comes whenever one part says to another, “I have no need of you,” then our unity would be strengthened. If all within the church saw the need for respecting the conscience and study of their brothers and sisters, trusting the Spirit to guide us into all truth, then our unity would be strengthened.

This is what has safeguarded the church, this is what will continue to safeguard the church: grounding our lives in the self-giving glory of God in Christ, shaping our lives after the Gospel, looking to recognize the gifts of those pushed to the edges and finding our own lives transformed by their witness. Structures will come in go, a lifestyle and attitude shaped by Christ will safeguard the church until God draws all things to Godself. I fear sometimes that ++Rowan and the broader church have forgotten that. I pray that we will all remember."


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