The Rev. John Yates, rector of the schismatic Falls Church, is entitled to his own opinion about the events that led him and his followers to break with the Episcopal Church. He is entitled to having those opinions published in The Washington Post. He is not, however, entitled to his own facts.
Regarding the church’s future, Yates writes:
We will stay in the Anglican Communion under the Archbishop of Canterbury, but through a different branch.
The facts are these: When Yate’s church left The Episcopal Church it left the Anglican Communion. His church is a member of the Anglican Church of North America. ACNA is not a member of the Anglican Communion. It has not applied for membership to the Anglican Communion. Its leader, Archbishop Robert Duncan, has never been invited to the Primates Meeting, which is chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury. When a member of ACNA attempted to attend a meeting of the Anglican Consultative Conference on behalf of the Church of Uganda, the Council–which is also chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury–refused to seat him.
ACNA has close relationships with numerous provinces within the Anglican Communion. ACNA argues that because some of its bishops are considered bishops of these churches, that they are therefore bishops in the Anglican Communion. But individual provinces do not have the authority to confer corporate membership in the Communion unilaterally.
It may not be important in the long run whether ACNA is a member of the Communion or not. It isn’t clear that membership in the Communion would affect its future prospects one way of the other. It seems unlikely that lack of membership in the Communion would harm its already solid relationship with churches that are members of the Communion. That said, Yates misrepresented the facts.