Two bishops at the heart of a deepening rift between the U.S. Episcopal Church and much of the worldwide Anglican Communion will not be invited to a global gathering next year of Anglican leaders, the secretary-general of the communion said Tuesday.
Neither Bishop V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire nor Bishop Martyn Minns of the breakaway Convocation of Anglicans in North America have been asked to attend the next Lambeth Conference, a once-a-decade gathering hosted by the archbishop of Canterbury. The conference is scheduled for next summer in England.
The communion’s secretary-general, the Rev. Canon Kenneth Kearon, spoke at a briefing for reporters in London, and his remarks were later distributed.
In the invitation sent Tuesday to more than 850 Anglican and Episcopal bishops, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the spiritual leader of the 77-million-member communion, said he had decided to forgo invitations to Robinson and Minns so that the meeting would focus on holding the increasingly fractious fellowship together.
Including bishops “whose appointment, actions or manner of life have caused exceptionally serious division or scandal within the communion” would hurt efforts to create trust, Williams said.