July 31, 2009

Deconstructing Rowan

When I read Rowan Williams’ “Communion, Covenant and our Anglican Future” (CCAF) at the beginning of the week—it is now Friday—it pushed a lot of my hot buttons. I have been working fitfully all week trying to tease apart the content of the archbishop’s reflection and to express some of the thoughts it has inspired. By now, of course, everyone may be weary of reading analyses of CCAF.

Weary or not, I now offer my own deconstruction of CCAF and thoughts about what the Archbishop has said and where his thinking is tending. You can read my essay, “Reflecting on the Archbishop’s Reflection” on Lionel Deimel’s Farrago. Although my own analysis comes late to the party, I hope it will be found worth reading. It is, of course, written by an unabashed Episcopalian who admittedly is finding both the archbishop and the Anglican Communion a bit tiresome.

Here are a few random thoughts from “Reflecting on the Archbishop’s Reflection” that are discussed at greater length there:
  1. The archbishop is showing signs of flexibility, probably because he is afraid of how things will play out. He needs to expand his horizons even more.
  2. Rowan Williams and others promoting an Anglican covenant are revolutionaries, not preservers of the Anglican Communion. They have portrayed the Communion as being the way they would like it to be, not as it has been.
  3. The archbishop has conflated the issues of same-sex unions and gay bishops. The issues are separable and should be dealt with individually.
  4. Heterosexual marriage isn’t threatened by same-sex unions. The Church has invested more significance in marriage than it deserves.
  5. The archbishop apparently knows nothing about risk assessment or change management.
Somewhat arrogantly, perhaps, I have placed my latest essay in the Church Resources section of my Web site. I considered placing in under Commentary, but I am hoping that it may have some enduring value as a “resource.” Time will tell. In any case, let me make a special invitation to readers to comment on my essay. If appropriate, I will discuss any comments I receive here. Click on “Send comments here,” at the left to offer your thoughts.

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