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Outgoing ACC Standing Committee response: “receiving” means “neither endorsed nor affirmed consequences”

Outgoing ACC Standing Committee response: “receiving” means “neither endorsed nor affirmed consequences”

The outgoing Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council has issued Outgoing SC response final, “Walking together: a clarification” (pdf).

A key paragraph,

In receiving the Archbishop of Canterbury’s formal report of the Primates’ Gathering and Meeting, ACC16 neither endorsed nor affirmed the consequences contained in the Primates’ Communique. There was no plenary discussion or decision with respect to the Primates’ Communiqué. From our perspective there did not seem to be a common mind on the issue, other than the clear commitment to avoid further confrontation and division. ACC16 did welcome the call for the Instruments of Communion and the Provinces to continue to walk together as they discern the way forward. No consequences were imposed by the ACC and neither was the ACC asked to do so.

Emphasis added.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has stated a different opinion on several occasions — as recently as last week on his website:

By receiving my report, which incorporated the Primates’ Communique, the ACC accepted these consequences entirely, neither adding to nor subtracting from them. There was no attempt during the Meeting to increase the consequences or to diminish them. No member of TEC stood for office at the ACC elections. All this passed without a vote, as part of a block of motions agreed.

So much for that issue, which has been much distorted in comments since the end of the ACC.



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Martin Reynolds

Thanks Tobias.
I am glad for your help.

It seemed like another attempt to make gay people pay the price of keeping the Communion happy!

Cynthia Katsarelis

It may have been framed that way, I’m not sure.

TEC was lifted up by +Josiah for our “walking together” with conservatives. The fact that no priest or congregation is required to do inclusive sacramental marriage is, in my view, a very fine example of walking together and worthy of being lifted up. I’m not sure that view is shared!

The issue is the 7 dissenting bishops and how “provisions” are made for gay couples in those dioceses seeking marriage. There’s a heap of confusion and hurt over that.

Martin Reynolds

Another PR disaster!
As some have said, the journalism is very poor.
The outrageous condescension towards the former chair and vice chair is mind bogglingly inept.
“What nice people you are to serve the Communion so well over the years, but now you are nobodies and what you think doesn’t count anymore and besides you were only the Chair and vice chair and a band of reps on the Executive and you are in any case wrong. Me and the Archbishop of Canterbury are right, so there!” … sort of.
This will just make the whole thing run and run. It will end badly.
Somebody PLEASE tell me what’s going on with Curry and the so called Communion partner bishops, if it’s not too much trouble …..?

Tobias Haller

Martin, I believe (not on the basis of first hand information, but from what I’ve read) that this is simply Bishop Curry being in conversation with the bishops who remain opposed to SSM; on how, given their opposition, they can meet the requirements of the resolution adopted by General Convention — which gives them oversight of the trial use, and the charge to provide access to the liturgies. Apparently various accommodations have been proposed and implemented, and I assume that the PB is simply trying to monitor and shepherd this process. I do not think there is anything sinister going on; just the usual bump in the road when any change is at hand.

If I am mistaken, I hope someone will post a more accurate assessment or report. As I say, my knowledge on this is second or third hand — but it seems likely.

Joan Gundersen

Anyone who knows parliamentary procedure can tell you that “receiving” a report is not the same thing as “approving” it or “adopting” it or in Welby’s words “incorporating” it. Receiving basically says “Thank you, we acknowledge that you have submitted this” and implies no endorsement or action.

Tobias Haller

Joan Gundersen is, of course, precise and correct on this. I can only add that the reason “received” is used in such circumstances is due to the reports in question being essentially factual (or regarded as such), as in a treasurer’s report. The ABC’s “report” included reference to the communique, which was itself a kind of summary report of the meeting of the Primates. So in receiving the report the ACC merely acknowledges the Primates’ “gathering” took place and issued a communique — without endorsing any of its conclusions or opinions.

Rod Gillis

Good reminder. I just tracked back to your comment above. Perhaps worth adding that in terms of the Anglican Communion News Service, one is advised to treat the word “News” with a hermeneutic of suspicion. It is perhaps more accurately described as P.R.

Rod Gillis

David, sure thing. However, I’m thinking that readers of something with an impressive name like Anglican Communion News Service could use the reminder. Interesting that they appear to have waited until they had a comment from the GS before engaging the story, which in turn gives them a particular caption, focusing not on the statement form the ACC outgoing executive but on the response from the GS.

David Allen

Isn’t that a given on almost any “news service” that exists to report about the entity to which it is beholden for existence? Episcopal News Service?

I realize that isn’t the case in Canada and ACoC & Anglican Journal. They recently reported being shut out of having an inside track.

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