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Archbishop Fred Hiltz on the bishops’ discussions in the Anglican Church of Canada, including the Anglican covenant

Archbishop Fred Hiltz on the bishops’ discussions in the Anglican Church of Canada, including the Anglican covenant

Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, gave the Anglican Journal an overview of what dominated the bishops’ discussions over the course of the Nov. 20-24 meeting.

The major areas discussed between the Anglican and Lutheran bishops included confirmation, marriage, open table, human resources, competency, and of course, the Anglican covenant:

Section IV continues to be the sticking point in this document, designed to deal with dissent within the Anglican Communion. “There are no difficulties with sections I to III. The language sounds very relational and very Anglican,” said the archbishop. “Section IV also starts off relational but begins to sound juridical, and that creates a problem.” While upholding autonomy, this section also makes it clear that the exercise of autonomy has consequences. “My personal concern is what happens when the direction you move in is not in accordance with the standards of the communion. You’re out. It does not end on a note of restoration or hope, so I say it falls short of the Gospel,” Archbishop Hiltz said. A guide to navigating the covenant was posted last June on the church’s national website.


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Rod Gillis

Its worth noting that these comments come out of a meeting of The Canadian House of bishops ( with their Lutheran full-communion counterparts).

Its also worth noting, that despite a study program on the proposed Covenant, really very little has been done to engage its content across the Canadian Church. This may be the reason why there is little information about what came from The Primate’s plan to do a “cross country check-up” on the Covenant at the bishop’s meeting. Note the report to the Canadian Council of General Synod (CoGS) in this link.

Very hard to find out what conversation, if any, is being had on the Covenant by priests and laity across The Canadian Church, and what they may be thinking.

Michael Russell

Those who continue to suggest that the first three sections are “ok” are just buying a pig in a poke. The hermeneutic of the Covenant elevates tradition and dismisses Reason as a source of authority. It is not Anglican at all, but the Frankenstein sewing together of tradtionalism and scripturalism.

It is part of the conservative attack on Reason and Rights now championed by the likes of N.T. Wright and the Primates of Uganda and Nigeria.

Reason is the lynchpin of Hooker’s dynamic view of revelation and authority.

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