The Archbishop of Canterbury offered his qualified personal endorsement to Gafcon today, telling the congregation of All Saints Cathedral in Nairobi his vision for the future of the Anglican Communion was of a Bible-based church dedicated to mission and evangelism – goals shared by the Gafcon movement of the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (FCA).
While Archbishop Justin Welby stopped short of giving Gafcon his formal imprimatur, he conceded the existing instruments of communion were no longer fit for purpose in ordering the life of the Anglican world.
I can’t put my finger on it, but I can’t bring myself to trust this man. Maybe it’s the years I’ve spent in the oil industry. I think he’s trying to find a business deal between the two sides of the Anglican Communion when such is inappropriate, to say the least. It’s like the oil company executive who’s trying to convince a state-owned monopoly to start a joint venture; not only will it violate the monopoly’s principles, but generally there are only two results: either the oil company takes over everything, or it gets taken to the cleaners (or nationalised) by the parent country. In the more “colonial” past, the former was the usual result; since the rest of the world has “come up to speed” the latter is not unusual.
And the provinces that make up GAFCON have certainly come up to speed.
Then there’s this back-pedalling:
The archbishop also hinted the Communion may not be able to count upon the Church of England to hold the line on issues close to the heart of the Gafcon movement. Archbishop Welby recounted his strong public opposition to the British government’s same-sex marriage bill, noting it had come at a great “personal cost” to him as the culture and government were hostile to the church. However, he was silent on whether the Church of England would permit the blessing of gay civil unions.
No kidding. The Church of England is, after all, a creature of the state. That’s something that both Welby and his GAFCON audience ignore at their peril.