Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Catholic voices: Staying on Mission and in Communion

From The Living Church-

After a big storm there is usually a mess, and some reconfiguration of the landscape, as old landmarks are destroyed and new ones appear. Finding a path through the mess, and rebuilding connections with the wider world, is the first step in recovery. The storm of the last several years has indeed reconfigured the Anglican world. Realignment of a kind has come, along with a big mess. Significant numbers of conservatives have decamped to the Anglican Church in North America, Anglican Mission in the Americas, and other churches. Globally, the Communion has become a patchwork of churches in varying degrees of division or fellowship with each other. It is a bit of a mess, really.

The majority of theological conservatives remain in the Episcopal Church, and often in its larger and more evangelistically vigorous parishes and dioceses. As they emerge from the storm’s aftermath, just what sense are they making of the new landscape? And what pathways are they clearing to rebuild connections to the wider Church?

To hear what some of these conservatives were saying, I attended the recent Communion Partners conference in Orlando, Florida. Communion Partners began in 2008 as a fellowship of bishops, and quickly become a fellowship of rectors as well. Conservative in theology, committed to the Windsor Process, supportive of the Anglican Covenant, determined to maintain ties with the Anglican Communion, critical at times of the Episcopal Church’s leadership and policies, these leaders accept that they will need to take the long view and work for the renewal of the Episcopal Church. It is a new group with a low profile. But to judge from the enthusiasm of the Orlando meeting, we shall be hearing a lot more from it.

More here-

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