The Anglican Communion News Service reports that Canon Dr Alyson Barnett-Cowan has been appointed Director for Unity, Faith and Order at the Anglican Communion Office.
The Secretary General, Canon Kenneth Kearon, has announced the appointment of Canon Dr Alyson Barnett-Cowan as Director for Unity, Faith and Order at the Anglican Communion Office. The post is a new one in the Communion, and arose after some restructuring following the election of Canon Gregory Cameron, formally Director of Ecumenical Affairs and Deputy Secretary General, as Bishop of St Asaph in the Church in Wales.
Canon Barnett-Cowan is currently Director of Faith, Worship and Ministry of the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada, a post she has held since 1995. She has wide experience of the life of the Anglican Communion, having been a member of the Lambeth Commission on Communion (2003-4) and of the Inter-Anglican Standing Commission on Ecumenical Relations (2000-2008). She is currently a consultant to the Anglican-Lutheran International Commission, and has been a member of the Plenary Commission, Faith and Order at the World Council of Churches.
Update: The Anglican Journal writes:
“It’s an extraordinarily important position and a huge honour,” said Ms. Barnett-Cowan in an interview from Christchurch in New Zealand, where she is on sabbatical. “I am very excited that they’ve accepted a woman [who is an] ordained priest from Canada, particularly when the ordination of women is still an open question for discussion within the Communion and with many of our ecumenical partners.
“It means that the Communion is willing to have ordained women in positions
of responsibility,” she added. “I feel that I’ve put my head out into the
wind and it’s blowing strong there now.”
“I told [Bishop] Victoria [Matthews] that I don’t know why I’m giving up
what I always thought was the best job in the Anglican Church of Canada.”
(Bishop Matthews, the former bishop of the diocese of Edmonton, is now
bishop of the diocese of Christchurch, in the Anglican Province of Aotearoa,
New Zealand and Polynesia.)