Friday, March 23, 2007

Can we quit asking why +Katharine "signed" the Tanzania Communique now?

It's been in print several places ... including the blog following our meeting with +Katharine in Portland ... but now here it is in The Living Church.

Asked whether her support for the actions taken by the House of Bishops served to revoke her signature on the primates’ communiqué, Bishop Schori responded that she had not signed the communiqué in Dar es Salaam. Her assent had been verbal, she said. Archbishop Williams had gone around the room asking all the primates if they could live with the agreement. Bishop Schori said she told the primates, “I would bring this back to the House of Bishops,” “explain it” to them, and “seek the will of the house.”

Asked to clarify her comments, the Presiding Bishop said the “best way to gain a consensus” among the primates in Tanzania was to support the communiqué, however, “she was not able to speak for the whole House of Bishops.”

TO RECAP:
.
The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church is NOT able to speak
for the whole House of Bishops.
.
They spoke for themselves at Camp Allen.
.
They said "no" on their own behalf and referred the matter to
Executive Council.

.
The process is working.

7 comments:

Mike in Texas said...

Susan, my mother always told me that it's not polite to confuse certain people with facts.

;)

And while I'm in here, I'd like to say how much I appreciate the commentary you've been making in various places over the last few days. Well done, Susan.

Hiram said...

It would be interesting to know if the other primates who were in the Dar es Salaam meeting were under the impression that Bp Schori had assented to the Communique. From the TLC article, it would seem that all she said was, "I'll see what the US bishops think." That, of course, is not the same as affirming the Communique.

Perhaps the primates heard her say she would present it to the House of Bishops and discuss it, following which the HoB would make its own mind up. If they understood her intentions to be just that, fine.

But if the primates left -- and especially if Abp Williams left -- with the idea that she accepted the Communique as it stood and that she would seek to have the US bishops accept it, then Bp Schori has been disengenuous, letting the primates think one thing, but meaning another all the while.

It doesn't matter if she signed or not. What did she say in Dar es Salaam? What did the other primates believe that she said? If all that was asked of any primate was that they take the document home, that is one thing. But if the primates were asked to stand behind the Communique, that is another.

Susan Russell said...

Hiram,

She said she would take it to the House of Bishops.

She told us in Portland that she "made it clear" to the Primates that she was not empowered to speak for the House of Bishops.

You're grapsing at straws here, Hiram my friend -- understandable at this point, but rather futile nonetheless.

Hiram said...

Susan, there is a difference between "I will take it to the House of Bishops" and "I think that this statement (the Communique) is a good way forward and I will present it to the House of Bishops with the hopes that they will approve it."

If Bp Schori said the first, and the Primates understood her to say that, without endorsing the Communique herself, well and good. If she said the second, and the Primates understood her to be saying that, again, well and good (although she did not get far if she was trying to get the Communique accepted). But if she gave the impression that she was saying the second thing (and remember the story -- unconfirmed - - that she signed the Communique with tears: where did the story come from?) but meant only to present it to the HoB, that is another.

I am not grasping at straws. It is apparent that any hope we conservatives had of the Episcopal Church heeding the warning and the advice of the larger Communion is gone. The only question is how to get out as quickly as possible, with as little unnecessary pain to others as can be managed. I am simply curious to know what Bp Schori said, what she meant, and how she was heard.

Susan Russell said...

Hiram ... I've got to get back to my Evensong homily but:

1.I sat in a room with her myownself-personally and asked her if she signed it.

2. She said she did not.

3. She said they were asked "if they could live with it."

4. She said she replied, "I will take it back to the House of Bishops."

My experience is +Katharine is yet to utter an unconsidered word.

Hiram said...

Thanks, Susan. I am not very skilled at politics, but it seems to me that if the only question asked of the primates was, "Can you live with this?" and not "Will you agree to this and support it?" that the Dar es Salaam meeting came within a frog's eyelash of falling apart. "Can you live with this?" is a pretty trifling measure of agreement.

This statement is not like the statements that came out of the 2003 emergency Primates' meeting, or the Dromantine meeting of 2006, if a verbal assent of living with it is all that supports it. I wonder how much longer the Anglican Communion itself has before it fractures....

Anonymous said...

The HOB didnt close the door to issuing the clarifications as required in the Communique; I believe they will cave in a deal before September.

Don't count your chicks before they have hatched.