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Hallo again to all on Epiphany II.

The lead story in the Church Times this week is about a book whose authors are listed as two Anglican primates. We have not seen the book; what we know about it is from the excerpt in the Church Times; you can read what we know about it by looking here in our News Centre. We would summarise by saying that it is a proposal to give the assembled primates enough authority to resolve controversies, in particular of homosexuality and of ordaining women. They would presumably use this authority to force out of the Anglican Communion any province whose practices did not agreee with the majority opinion about sex.

Leaving aside the interesting question of just what is the Anglican Communion, we sometimes grow weary of the assumption that our Communion is primarily interested in the area between the navel and the knee, that the entire ethical realm reduces to questions of plumbing. It seems to us worryingly possible that this one issue is going to result in two churches, dividing North and South in much the same way that the Great Schism of AD 1054 divided East and West. The relationship between consensus and truth is at best tenuous, and in any conflict such as this, each participant is quite convinced that it is armed with the truth. If there is a split, neither side would 'win' and neither side would be the true church or the true Anglican church, would it? Each side would presumably call itself the true church and the other side the impostor. (We've all been here before. Do note that today's Revised Common Lectionary readings included 1 Cor 12:4-7.) However, we note that Canterbury is in England and the word 'Anglican' fundamentally means 'English'; the Archbishop of Canterbury is appointed by the British Government, in a country that is increasingly secular.

Today's RCL readings also included John 2:1-11, which makes us think about this: These days we often see references to 'What would Jesus do?'. Most groups that are attempting to push an agenda on others do so in the honest belief that Our Lord would support them. Naturally we think He would consult our News Centre to catch up on what's happening, and we have a nagging feeling that he would be much more distressed to learn that most weddings these days are not religious ceremonies. Jesus performed his first miracle at a wedding in Cana. You will note that this wedding was not performed on a blimp or under water or on the backs of camels.

See you next week. We promise that here at Anglicans Online there will be nary a blimp nor a camel in sight.

Cynthia McFarland's signature
  Brian Reid's signature
Cynthia McFarland
  Brian Reid

Last updated: 14 January 2001