Members of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission will hold the first meeting of the third round of dialogue in May.
One of the Anglican members was ordained to the priesthood in the Episcopal Church and was one of the theologians who authored "To Set Our Hope on Christ: A Response to the Invitation of Windsor Report Paragraph 135."
The co-Chairmen and co-secretaries of the new phase of the Anglican – Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC III) have drawn up a plan for the first meeting of the Commission. This will be hosted by the Monastery of Bose, northern Italy, from 17 to 27 May 2011. The new phase of ARCIC’s work was mandated by Pope Benedict XVI and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, at their meeting in Rome in November 2009.
The co-Chairmen are the Most Reverend Bernard Longley, Archbishop of Birmingham, England (Roman Catholic) and the Most Reverend David Moxon, Archbishop of the New Zealand dioceses (Anglican).
The task of this third phase of ARCIC will be to consider fundamental questions regarding the ‘Church as Communion - Local and Universal’, and ‘How in communion the Local and Universal Church comes to discern right ethical teaching’. These interrelated topics emerged from the Common Declaration of the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The international membership of this new phase of ARCIC represents a wide range of cultural settings, and brings to the Commission a variety of theological disciplines.
One of the Anglican members is the Rev. Dr Mark McIntosh, Van Mildert Canon Professor of Divinity in the Department of Theology and Religion at the University of Durham in England. His biography includes the following:
My interest in this common spring of theology and prayer began while studying History as an undergraduate at Yale University, working with Jaroslav Pelikan, Hans Frei, and Louis Dupré. I then earned a second BA in Theology at Oxford University, residing and training for ordination at St. Stephen’s House. After a Masters of Divinity from the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church, I served as a member of the clergy of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago. In 1993 I received a Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Chicago, writing a dissertation on the intersection of theology and spirituality in the Christology of Hans Urs von Balthasar, under the supervision of David Tracy, Bernard McGinn, and Anne Carr. Since then I have been a member of the Theology Department of Loyola University Chicago, during which time I also served as a chaplain to the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church, and as canon theologian to the 25th Presiding Bishop and Primate.
To Set Our Hope on Christ was prepared by a group of seven theologians, including McIntosh, and one historian at the request of Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold in 2005. The Episcopal News Service said at that time:
In his foreword to the 130-page text, Griswold writes: "The Episcopal Church in the United States welcomes the request made in paragraph 135 of the Windsor Report: 'We particularly request a contribution from the Episcopal Church (USA) which explains, from within the sources of authority that we as Anglicans have received in scripture, the apostolic tradition and reasoned reflection, how a person living in a same gender union may be considered eligible to lead the flock of Christ.'
"The Episcopal Church has been seeking to answer this question for nearly 40 years, and at the same time has been addressing a more fundamental question, namely: how can the holiness and faithfulness to which God calls us all be made manifest in human intimacy?"
The foreword continues: "Though we have not reached a common mind we have come to a place in our discussion such that the clergy and people of a diocese have been able, after prayer and much discernment, to call a man living in a same sex relationship to be their bishop. As well, a majority of the representatives of the wider church -- bishops, clergy and lay persons -- have felt guided by the Holy Spirit, a gain in light of prayer and discernment to consent to the election and consecration."
The paper was offered earlier today in Nottingham, England, to the international Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) as part of a presentation made by the Episcopal Church as invited by the ACC.
"As this paper is an explanation of how this action could have been taken by faithful people it makes the positive case," the Presiding Bishop states in the foreword. "It does not attempt to give all sides of an argument or to model a debate" or "to replicate or summarize the conversations that have taken place in the church over nearly 40 years. The Appendix does that."
The theologians who prepared the paper are:
* The Rev. Dr. Michael Battle of the Virginia Theological Seminary;
* The Rev. Dr. Katherine Grieb of the Virginia Theological Seminary;
* The Rev. Dr. Jay Johnson of the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley;
* The Rev. Dr. Mark McIntosh of Loyola University Chicago;
* The Rt. Rev. Catherine Roskam, Bishop Suffragan of New York;
* Dr. Timothy Sedgwick of the Virginia Theological Seminary; and
* Dr. Kathryn Tanner of the University of Chicago Divinity School.
Dr. Pamela W. Darling, a historian of General Convention legislation and Episcopal Church ministry, prepared the Appendix "which delineates the formal contents of the debate over these last four decades," the Presiding Bishop said.
Last Pentecost, the Archbishop said that:
'declines to accept requests or advice from the consultative organs of the Communion, it is very hard to see how members of that province can be placed in position where they are required to represent the Communion as a whole. This affects both our ecumenical dialogues...and our faith-and-order related groups.'
So while the Episcopal Church was dis-invited from IASCUFO, one of the authors of our official response to the Windsor Report is included in ARCIC III because he is now in the Church of England.