Down to the Wire: Just $7,078 left to match to win our Challenge Grant. Your gift will still be doubled!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

bowing to the inevitable, but not too fast

By Diogenes (articles ) | Aug 27, 2008

 The burning question that divides the Anglican communion is homosexuality. At the Lambeth Conference, Anglican divines discussed how they could resolve that question-- or, better, agree to leave it unresolved. Looking back upon those discussions, the Archbishop of Canterbury observes:

Second, on the controversial issue of the day regarding human sexuality, there was a very widely-held conviction that premature or unilateral local change was risky and divisive, in spite of the diversity of opinion expressed on specific questions.

The question, again, is whether the Anglican communion, as a body, should agree to scrap 2,000 years of Christian teaching that homosexual acts are immoral. Conservative prelates, particularly in Africa, worry that their European and American colleagues will take that leap into the moral void, if they haven't done so already. The Lambeth discussion was intended to ease those fears, reassuring the conservatives that the world's Anglican leaders really haven't made up their minds. 

Notice that the proposed answer to the Africans' complaints doesn't really address their fears. The fact that English bishops might not forsake the Christian tradition is hardly an assurance that the tradition will be preserved intact. ("Are you going to blow up this house? You haven't decided? Oh, good; then I can continue living here in confidence.")

But the Archbishop of Canterbury goes even further. The problem, he instructs the Anglican faithful, is with "premature or unilateral local change." Although his statement is designed to be placatory, he clearly conveys the notion that a change in Anglican doctrine and discipline is coming; it just shouldn't come prematurely. And when it does come, that change should be made on a universal, rather than local, basis. 

From the perspective of the African conservatives, then, the Anglican ship is definitely headed for the rocks. It's not all that promising to learn that the captain has ease back on the throttle without altering the course. Nor is it comforting he really really wants you to stay on board. 

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($57,347 to go):
$150,000.00 $92,653.13
38% 62%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

The gift of orthodoxy: A mercy and a challenge to mercy 3 hours ago
Getting Marriage Right November 25
O Earthly Lord, vouchsafe to us high speed Internet. November 25
No 'Francis effect' in Strasbourg November 25
What Pope Francis told European Parliament, and what Pope John Paul II said November 25

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Europe seems 'elderly and haggard' CWN - November 25