"The Preachers chiefly shall take heed that they teach nothing in their preaching, which they would have the people religiously to observe and believe, but that which is agreeable to the Doctrine of the Old Testament and the New, and that which the Catholick Fathers and Ancient Bishops have gathered out of that Doctrine." A proposed canon of Elizabeth I, 1571

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Location: Bedford, Texas, United States

I am a presbyter in the diocese of Fort Worth, Texas (Anglican Church in North America). I serve as Chaplain at St. Vincent's School and as a canon of St. Vincent's Cathedral Church in Bedford, Texas. In addition to my parish duties and teaching Religion classes in the school I am also the Middle School Social Studies teacher.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The Common Cause is Endorsed by the Network

Front Row: Jon-David Schofield, San Joaquin; Jack Iker, Forth Worth: Bill Cox, Southern Cone/Asst. Oklahoma rt; Gregory Venables, Primate Southern Cone; Robt Duncan, Pittsburgh; William Wantland, Eau Claire rt; Keith Ackerman, Quincy.
Second Row: James Stanton, Dallas; William Ilgenfritz, Forward in Faith bishop elect; Bill Atwood, suffragan bishop elect of All Saints Diocese Kenya; Bishop Ray Sutton, Reformed Episcopal Church; John Guernsey, suffragan bishop elect of Uganda; Richard Boyce, Anglican Province of America; Jeffrey Steenson, Rio Grande; Don Harvey, Western Newfoundland rt; David Bena, suffragan Albany rt/Asst Bishop Cana; James Adams, Western Kansas; William Love, Albany

St Vincent’s Cathedral, Bedford Texas. July 31, 2007.

In a hugely important step toward orthodox Anglican unity in North America, today the ACN ratified the Theological Statement and Articles of the Common Cause Partnership. This grouping will allow close cooperation, amounting in truth to a federation, of groups including the Network, the AMiA, CANA, the APA, and the REC. Ministers should be able to be called between the jurisdictions, and even "officiate transiently" in each other's jurisdictions. This is a great first step toward the new "ecclesial structure" envisioned by the Global South primates.

Here is the story on the actions of the Network's annual meeting (at my home church, St. Vincent's Cathedral, Bedford) today:

Council Ratifies Common Cause Structural Document

Delegates to the Network’s Annual Council voted unanimously to ratify the federating Articles of the Common Cause Partners, to clarify the relationship of Network affiliates to The Episcopal Church, and to restate the Network’s commitment to making space for different opinions about women in Holy Orders.

Describing the federating Articles, Bishop-elect John Guernsey said, they are “a step forward for Common Cause that allows the constituent partners to retain their identity and autonomy while forming a more coherent and accountable structure. None of the groups disappear and none of the groups stop their gospel mission… Yet we are forming a more coherent whole.”

The Articles create a leadership council, outline the purpose of the Common Cause partnership, and envision structures that will allow Common Cause Partners to work more closely together in communications, mission and education. Providing it meets each partner’s canonical requirements, the articles also envision Partners making arrangements for the orderly transfer of members between the parishes of different jurisdictions and allowing the clergy of Partners to “officiate transiently” in jurisdictions other than their own.

Delegates also unanimously approved an amendment to the bylaws of the Anglican Communion Network. Noting that many individual parishes and leaders in the Network are no longer part of The Episcopal Church, delegates voted to add the following statement: “Nothing in the charter or bylaws shall be interpreted as requiring submission to the constitution of The Episcopal Church by affiliates of this Network who are not themselves members of The Episcopal Church.

Finally, delegates voted unanimously to ask the Common Cause Partners to add an article to the Common Cause Partner’s Articles that acknowledges differences between Anglicans over women in Holy Orders and pledges that partners “shall recognize and honor the positions and practices on this issue of other members in the Common Cause Partnership.”

Bishop Robert Duncan, moderator of the Network, thanked delegates for their work. “I think we have done a very good job on some very significant things. God
has been, and continues to be, so good to us. Thank you,” he said.


Blogger Tregonsee said...

The Continuing Churches are an interesting group, one of which I am an unofficial member. The phrase "herding cats" does not come close to capturing the real situation. However, I am delighted, and optimistic, that some sort of sea change has occurred, and the ingathering of the faithful will continue and accelerate.

10:59 PM  

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