The leader of ACNA-Canada says the pope's invitation to disaffected Anglicans was neither helpful nor welcome.
Addendum. Bob Duncan, leader of ACNA was present.
"Apart from being an intrusion at the very highest levels of one major church into the internal affairs of another, under the guise of being ecumenical, this invitation offers very little that is new," Bishop Don Harvey, moderator of the Anglican Network in Canada, told the group's annual synod Thursday morning. [UPDATE: Harvey's full address is now available here.]
That according to a report in The [Toronto] Star.
The Anglican Communion, of course, is not a church. Harvey's statement does apply to the intrusion of the Church of Nigeria or the Southern Cone into the affairs of the Anglican Church of Canada or The Episcopal Church.
Harvey also told the synod:
"I find the words in the official joint communique referring to 'the Catholic Church and the Anglican Tradition' offensive in the extreme and reporters who suggested that this may be a solution to the Network's needs are not really aware of what we truly profess."Reporters would do well to listen to Harvey. On what basis can you draw the conclusion that the pope's invitation will have much if any effect? How many disaffected Anglicans and former Anglicans are there? And how many of those are unattracted if not repelled by the pope's invitation? In more diplomatic language ACNA (which claims a membership of 100,000) has declined the offer, as has its subsidiary, CANA, as has another subsidiary, the Anglo-Catholic Jack Iker, as have the Global South Primates led by Archbishop Peter Akinola. Tsunami, not.
The Star also interviewed Harvey. Some extracts:
"This is not just a matter of wearing different clothes or having a few more rules," Bishop Don Harvey of the Anglican Network in Canada said in a phone interview from his home in St. John's, Nfld. "If you go this route, you cannot say you are Anglican of some sort – because you are not." .... "This would be out of the frying pan and into the fire," he said of joining the new Catholic structure.
Harvey said while conservative Anglicans share many theological beliefs with Catholics – both oppose same-sex marriage and gay clergy, for instance – there are still many differences between the two.
Anglicans, he said, would chafe at any notion of the infallibility of the Pope, and do not accept Catholic teachings about Mary's immaculate conception, her assumption body and soul into heaven or the transubstantiation of Christ.