The confusion of the last couple of days of how the proposed Anglican Covenant might be adopted is a direct consequence of the evolving situation in the ACC and the shared understanding of the Covenant in Jamaica right now.
According to the Episcopal News Service, reporting on a press conference given by Archbishop Drexel Gomez and Bishop Gregory Cameron the process being used is still changing. And that state of change is what is giving rise the contradictory statements that have been made about the process and the implications over the past week.
"Anglican Communion Deputy Secretary General Gregory Cameron told reporters 'we're feeling our way' in terms of the implications for those provinces that decide not to sign onto the covenant, whether entities other than the provinces which are now members of the Anglican Consultative Council (as listed in the council's constitution) would be allowed to adopt the covenant and whether there would be a time limit for provinces to decide."
Further down the article reports:
Cameron said it would be up to a province to decide if its dioceses could adopt the covenant. A group of active and retired Episcopal Church bishops recently challenged the polity of the U.S.-based province by saying that they believed that its dioceses could take that action. There has been no official response to that claim.
The JSC draft resolution, which Cameron said was meant for purposes of discussion only and would no doubt change before the ACC voted, called for provinces to act by December 2014. Cameron said that some participants have said "they would like to see a tighter timeframe for the reception of the covenant."
"Obviously, it's too early to say where the mind of the council will settle," he said. "I don't hear any voices saying they'd like it to be longer."
Provinces allowing dioceses to sign on their own behalf even if the Province demurred is yet another new idea that has surfaced today. That's not something that has been explicitly stated before.
Read the full article here.