Some see few positive consequences of signing on to the proposed Covenant. True, it would perhaps show some institutional humility and a willingness to “continue the conversation” with other member churches of the Communion. But we are continuing to do this now without the Covenant: Bishop Councell noted that there were three archbishops from other Communion members in attendance at the recent House of Bishops meeting. And Episcopal Church dioceses continue companion-diocese and other relationships with other dioceses throughout the Communion. Perhaps endorsing the Covenant would only furnish a perception of willingness to stay in the Communion -a willingness that is already there in actuality.
Many are worried about the negative consequences of endorsing the Covenant. Among these consequences are the establishment of a new unnecessary hierarchy, the loss of diversity within the Communion, the loss of connection to churches that may not endorse the Covenant, destruction of the Anglican ethos, the forced abandonment of GLBTQ Anglicans, attenuation of the voice of the laity in the life of the Communion, and by putting decision-making in the hands of the Standing Committee, the hierarchical structure will reduce the incentive for churches with differing views to communicate one-to-one, as they do now. And finally, to the extent that representatives from The Episcopal Church may end up on the Standing Committee acting under Covenant Section 4.2, we may participate in being an instrument of oppression of another church within the Communion.