Who will save the Communion?
Vinay Samuel and Chris Sugden
Church of England Newspaper
January 15, 2016
Media reports prior to the Canterbury gathering heavily trailed as a resolution to the current crisis that churches might remain in communion with Canterbury while some were not in communion with others.
Our hope and prayer is that the Communion will take a firmer line than this in support of the settled Christian teaching on marriage which has stood the test of time.
TEC and Canada will never return to Lambeth 1.10. They cannot do so. The changed culture in the west will not go back. The key issue is not waiting for them to change or acting in such a way that will facilitate their change. The key issue is how the communion should continue if it is accepted that they should not be asked to leave.
African and other provinces have been faithfully ministering to the poor, to Ebola victims, to those who live with same-sex attraction and behaviour, to those persecuted in the Middle East and Pakistan, struggling to maintain faithful witness. Now they are being made the villains of the piece for strongly objecting to the heresies of TEC. Yet TEC has created the problem. Their churches are declining in numbers, their leaders espouse heresy, and they insist everyone become like them.
If TEC remains we do not see how it will be possible to contain them. That will put increasing pressure on the orthodox including members of the Global South that will more likely lead to their exit sooner rather than later. TEC and Canada must be told plainly that the future of the communion is in their hands. Since they have created the problem, they must come up with a solution. They are making it look as if the Orthodox provinces have created the problem. If TEC wishes this historic communion to survive they must be prepared to make sacrifices. They need to give undertakings that satisfy the rest or withdraw from the Communion. GAFCON must be willing to say what will enable them to accept the continuing membership of TEC and Canada in the Communion, short of them becoming orthodox which is now impossible. The future of the communion is in TEC’s hands. The Archbishop of Canterbury should put much pressure on TEC to come up with a viable solution...
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