Bishop Jones is going to be treated as a dangerous man by the Anglican right–and as a silly one by the Anglican Communion Institute/Fulcrum crowd who would condescend to Einstein on the topic of relativity. But the risk may be worth it if he is truly committed to the let-and-let-live solution he has articulated to the Anglican crisis over homosexuality.
Many, many bishops expressed a preference for this sort of solution at the Lambeth Conference in 2008, but Rowan Williams would not lead in that direction, preferring to place the burden of keeping the communion together on the backs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered Christians, who were asked to abandon any hope of first-class citizenship in the Church until Williams had persuaded some of the most bigoted men in the Communion that it wasn’t such a bad idea.
Williams’ approach hasn’t worked. It has done tremendous damage to the witness of the Church in the United States, Canada, and in his own country, where the public has turned away from a Church viewed ever more widely as a seat of reaction. Jones’ speech points the Church of England, and perhaps the entire Communion, in a new direction. Whether it has the wisdom to follow is another question.