the more things change, the more they stay the same
After meeting with Pope Benedict, and reassuring himself that Nothing Has Changed, the Archbishop of Canterbury spoke with Vatican Radio. The interview is revealing in two respects:
Few men can say "Hmmm," in response to a reporter's question, as beautifully as Dr. Williams. His tone is deep and resonant. He encourages the questioner, acknowledges the gravity of the issue, indicates his willingness to handle the tough questions, suggests that he has been pondering the question-- all without saying a word. You can read a lot into that "Hmmm" if you're inclined to do so. Given current circumstances, the Archbishop of Canterbury is required to show sympathy for all sorts of people, without saying anything that inflame the resentments of others who have incompatible beliefs and practices. Dr. Rowan Williams has responded to the challenge admirably, with his world-class "Hmmm."
Regarding homosexuality, you'll be pleased to know that "the position of the [Anglican] communion remains exactly what it was 10 years ago." Dr. Williams concedes that there are tensions surrounding the issue: all a matter of perceptions, evidently, since no changes have taken place. To minimize those tensions he hopes that the different branches will "keep in step with one another" and not rush ahead. Those images suggest movement, and yet in the past decade, he tells us, there has been none. Hmmm.
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