Network welcomes Kenya’s decision to care for U.S. Anglicans

from the Anglican Communion Network website

The leadership of the Anglican Communion Network welcomed news that the Anglican Province of Kenya has elected The Rev. Canon Bill Atwood Suffragan Bishop of the All Saints Cathedral Diocese in Nairobi. Among other duties, Bishop-elect Atwood will be initially supporting Kenyan clergy and congregations in North America. He joins Bishop Bill Cox of the Southern Cone as another domestic bishop cooperating in ministry with the Network, which has strong links with many international congregations under overseas jurisdiction through its International Conference. The Network welcomes Archbishop Nzimbi’s actions which also support its “Biblical, Missionary and Uniting” work.

“Anglicans around the world continue to make clear their support for Christ-centered Anglicanism in America in both their words and their actions. We are deeply thankful for this step by the Anglican Church of Kenya. As Archbishop Nzimbi said in his announcement, Canon Atwood’s election and consecration is ”˜part of a broader and coordinated plan with other provinces,’ to provide unity and pastoral care for those who have left or been forced out of The Episcopal Church,” said Bishop Robert Duncan, moderator of the Network.

The Anglican Communion Network remains committed to its International Conference representing parishes in relationship with the provinces of Kenya, Uganda, Southern Cone, and Central Africa as it also remains committed to working with its partners in CANA, AMiA and the broader Common Cause Partnerships. Following its mission to be a uniting force in the ongoing Anglican realignment, the Network continues to build relationships among all faithful Anglicans, those that have left the Episcopal Church and those within.

The full text is here (including Abp. Nzimbi’s letter)


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Latest News, - Anglican: Primary Source, -- Statements & Letters: Organizations, Anglican Communion Network, Episcopal Church (TEC)

56 comments on “Network welcomes Kenya’s decision to care for U.S. Anglicans

  1. seitz says:

    I wonder if we can conclude that when reference is now made by ‘Network’ to ‘Network’ this means, in respect of Bishops, Duncan, Beckwith, Scofield, Akermann, Iker? Does it mean as well, Salmon, Love, Howe, Steenson, Herlong/Bauerschmidt, Stanton? Anyone running the web site have any information?

  2. steveatmi5 says:

    Why is Seitz-ACI asking this question in this venue? Surely this is a question for Bishop Duncan directly. Is Seitz-Aci determined to divide people? Is this useful?

  3. AnglicanFirst says:

    ECUSA’s leadership could bring about a reconciliation of Anglicans in the United States by stating that it won’t permit any more ordinations/consecrations of clergy living in a sexual relationship outside of marriage between a man and a woman and by stating that it will not support same-sex blessings.

    But it is a sure bet that ECUSA’s leadership won’t do this.

    ECUSA is walking away from the other Anglican provinces and the guilt for this schismatic action rests directly on Schori and most of ECUSA’s other bishops.

  4. Eugene says:

    Why do this now? Why not wait until 30 September? It will come back to haunt them (us).

  5. seitz says:

    Dividing people? It is public knowledge that something has been created–an International Coalition, etc–and this appears now to be gathering Minns, Atwood, Duncan and others. It has not been endorsed by any of the older Network bishops in SC, TN, Albany, C-FL, Dallas, Rio Grande — that I know of. This is not a matter for a private conversation between myself and Bishop Duncan — what would that accomplish in the public realm? The Windsor Bishops are meeting next week and I am sure it will be useful to know whether now the ‘Network’ has become something else. I might have thought the ‘Network’ web-site might provide some information about that. How am *I* dividing anything? Seems like that is happening quite well without any involvement from myself or ACI. Or maybe you can enlighten otherwise?

  6. steveatmi5 says:

    Eugene, I would rather that they would wait also. But the situation is increasingly serious. The HOB clearly rejected Dar Es Alaam. Rowan Williams did nothing as a result, and has not even proposed to support the parts of that plan which he could have. This means the Archbishop sense of urgency looks very different in retrospect.

    Further, TEC Bishops continue apace with same sex blessings in defiance of the Communion, and then RW invited all bishops from North America save one to Lambeth at the present time. This latter was crucial. RW bypassed the Primates and gave a green light to Canada (esp Michael Ingham) and to the leading reappraising bishops in TEC BEFORE the September 30th deadline.

    Also, finally, the Windsor Bishops so called, in spite of numerous peoples and groups insistence on their value, have been essentially AWOL and were thoroughly ineffectual at the recent HOB meeting.

    So what exactly is supposed to be done then? They are trying to som something to help in the midst of a terrible situation–at great cost to themselves, btw.

  7. seitz says:

    In terms of facts, it should best be stated this way:
    1. TEC is slowly rejecting all that Dar asked; we have yet to see their response to moratoria; probably less nuanced and more direct than Canada;
    2. ‘clear rejection of Dar’ therefore, requires the passing of 30 September and the prosecution of Dar by those who set the deadline, the Primates (not six but all)
    3. the idea that ‘RDW did nothing at all’ is an opinion because the author cannot know what he is doing and has done; RDW does not report his actions on T19; moreover, prosecution of Dar is not an RDW matter, but a matter of the Primates Meeting; Drexel Gomez has assured the public that a prosecution will happen so long as he has anything to say about it;
    4. the Windsor Bishops meet next week. They are in close contact with Drexel Gomez.
    Just so that we can keep some facts straight. Not to do what anonymous blog commentators want, when they want it, in the form they want it, is not failing to act.

  8. Jordan Hylden says:


    Seitz asked a fair question. I mean, it’s pretty obvious that not all of the Network dioceses are participating in the “Common Cause” venture. That’s why, for instance, you have Bp. Howe inviting Abp. Gomez to his diocese, and etc. It’s been reported in several venues now that the the Network dioceses seem to be of several minds about +Duncan’s strategy. I think the Living Church mentioned it in a recent editorial, if my memory serves me correctly.


    I feel the same way. I mean, Sept. 30th isn’t that long from now. And then we’ll have the primates’ response to ECUSA after that, and then the final word (whatever it turns out to be) on the Lambeth invitations– which by no means are a done deal right now, as +RDW himself indicated.

    I wish +Duncan well, and I know that he’s the sort of man that cares deeply about the Gospel, but I just don’t see how this helps the church right now. He doesn’t even have the whole Network on board for this. And the Network itself is only a portion of the Windsor bishops’ group. When we stood together at Camp Allen, we really had something– which was proved when the Dar es Salaam Communique named the Camp Allen principles specifically as the way forward. How exactly do we argue that we’re against ECUSA’s defiance of the Instruments of Communion if we defy them ourselves?

    Y’know, it’d be nice to have someone here from the +Duncan group participating in the conversation here on the blogs. The ACI folks participate quite regularly, and I try to add my voice to theirs as well. I would really like to have someone from the +Duncan crowd explain how this all isn’t going to lead to one great big mess. If they’re so confident that it won’t, then they must have their reasons. But it’s a pretty darn important discussion, and it’d be nice if we could all join in. I don’t like the idea of a “new orthodox Communion” being thought up behind closed doors. There are a whole lot of people with pretty solid orthodox creds who apparently aren’t being consulted here. Everyone knows what ACI thinks, and they’ve talked with us here at great length. What’s +Duncan’s big plan?

  9. steveatmi5 says:

    #7 No, the facts are very different.

    The purported Windsor Bishops were supposed to stand up at the House of Bishops and be counted in welcoming DAR and protesting any attempt to do otherwise–it didn’t happen.

    RDW has not done anything public to continue to support the pastoral scheme nor to give any indication that he has urgency to do so. If you know of something he did in the public domain, then please say as much.

    RDW undermined a whole series of Communion leadership promises and steps by unnecessarily in advance inviting all N amer bishops save one to Lambeth at this time. This has a direct relationship upon any prosecuation of DAR, and makes it all but impossible. Your comments above fail to mention any of this–why? If people want Globla South Primates to wait until after September 30th, then why did RW do this BEFORE sept 30?

    Drexel Gomez is a wonderful leader, but he is one person. Already Greg Venables has made it clear to the Telegraph that under the present circumstances–created by RW who consistently has shown an unwillingness to “discipline”–Lambeth cannot happen.

    It is all such a confusing situation.

  10. Karen B. says:

    Jordan, can you really honestly tell me you think there’s even the tiniest chance that ++Rowan is going to rescind any of those Lambeth invitations? That act alone (of blanket invites to all ECUSA and Canadian bishops except +VGR) has done more to sabotage the Primates’ process and the whole tortuous Windsor process than anything.

    I mean to issue those invitations BEFORE Canada’s General Synod and any vote by them on SSBs. And to issue those invitations before Sept. 30 and ECUSA’s response. Why should Canada or ECUSA now bother to respond in accordance with the Primates’ requests? What would one have to do to get disinvited? All of VGR’s consenting bishops and consecrating bishops are invited. Michael Ingham is invited. It just boggles the mind.

    And then to have Bishops like +Howe (whom I deeply respect and pray for often) having done so much to undermine any stand by the Network and Windsor bishops at the HoB meeting with his proposed resolution that ECUSA demand ++Rowan come and meet with them.
    The process was broken.

    I have been deeply grieved and troubled by the potential 50-50 split in the Network that has been discussed in various forums over the past 2 months. I am hoping and praying tonight that the reality of the HUGE risk of serious fragmentation / Anglican Alphabet Soup / a repeat of the sad divisions of the Continuing church, etc etc. will spur the orthodox leaders to VERY VERY serious action & prayer to figure out what it will take to achieve true unity that glorifies Christ. I can only imagine how soul-wrenching these last few months have been for so many of our catholically-inclined orthodox leaders (I think of +Duncan and Kendall and many others.) No one can imagine they want this split that has emerged. But the alternative to just continue the silent bleed out as individual families leave and parishes die is much much worse as I view it.

  11. Rob Eaton+ says:

    SteveatMi5 (sounds veddy English),
    Regarding your questioning of the question in #1, are you kidding? Are you a new reader to this weblog? Have you seen some of the things people have asked in the past – off-topic, on-topic, over-topic, under-topic, relevant, irrrelevant, mistaken, rancid, vapid, raging, understated, etc., etc.
    So here is a posting from Kendall re: a new development that gives light to a recent Telegraph article, and Seitz asks a serious question with larger implications in the comment section looking for answers, or perhaps simply to vent his frustration. This is quite within the realm of a reasonable comment.
    I’m not here to defend Seitz’ comment, but to defend the ability of anybody to make their comment – the Elves (God bless them) will see to the necessary parameters.
    This is very bull-doggy of you. I probably wouldn’t have reacted this way to your comment if you had directed your comment to Seitz himself, instead of the rest of “the readers” your jury.


  12. Dee in Iowa says:

    As a layperson reading this thread – I can only say – Reappraisers, mission accomplished, they are eating their own…….

  13. steveatmi5 says:

    #11, the point is the question is best directed to network leadership, not to a general and public audience.

  14. AnglicanFirst says:

    In comment #10 Karen B. said,
    “That act alone (of blanket invites to all ECUSA and Canadian bishops except +VGR) has done more to sabotage the Primates’ process and the whole tortuous Windsor process than anything.”

    I agree Karen and +++Williams’ actions trouble me deeply. I am still trying to believe that he is and has been trying to be both an Anglican leader and an ‘honest broker’ in this ECUSA initiated crisis.

    But, my experience in life is leading me to try and determine if there is some sort of underlying game plan that can explain +++Williams’ behavior. And some of the scenarios that I am envisioning include the possibility that he is going to do whatever he can to weaken the orthodox in the Anglican Communion.

    I hope that I am wrong but what has developed over the very recent past smacks of ‘passive-aggressive’ gamesmanship. I have seen some masters play that game and it seems to be the game in play at this time.

    I truly pray that I am wrong in my fears.

  15. chips says:

    I think +Kenya’s move is great. He already had 20+ parishes here – Sept is rapidly approaching and there is what may be a big common cause meeting after the HOB meeting. Kenya needs to have a Bishop to go to the meeting to represent those parishes and to have someone sign onto the “deal” assuming one is created. If the meeting announces a Federation and 6 or more provinces recognize it as the legitamite Anglican Presense in America then +ABC has a bigger problem than the Sept 30 deadline passing. Pressure should be such that he will have to recognize the new Federation at least in some capacity as being part of the communion. If I were the +ABC a soft-left but institutionalist theologian trying to hold the factions together – I would offer associate status to the new “Federation” in exchange for a consensus to keep TEC in to offfer it associate status in the post covenant Communion.
    So many comments are concerned with it being a mess – TEC and the status quo is a real mess. The battle for reform is lost – those elements pushing further to the left/heresy have never been nor will be disciplined. They are committed to a new theology and are willing to wrap themselves in the American Flag (such irony) in order to promote it.

  16. cssadmirer says:

    “When we stood together at Camp Allen, we really had something…”

    Jordan, this says a lot. Who is the “we”? What exactly did “you” have? Presumably you were not there. The Bishops (and a few others) who were there are a cobbled together coalition of folks who are very institutionally oriented overall. When the scheme got to Tanzania it had to be modified specifically so that interventions could continue. Why? Because the TEc leaders were continuing their defiance AND because a number of key Anglican leaders could not see any meaningful leadership WOULD ACTUALLY come from this group of Bishops to provide meaningfully for whats left of the orthodox Anglicans in North America.

  17. Kendall Harmon says:

    Dee in #12, I actually am not in agreement with you, in that honest diagreements are actually quite important and quite healthy as long as they are done in a Christian way.

  18. Scotsreb says:

    I may be wrong in my estimation of timing, but, the new Kenyan bishop is to be consecrated on the 30th August, in Kenya. This is a normal process, a regular process. IMO, it merely opens the play book, to show how best to carry the ball down field in the next series of downs.

    None of those plays will go into effect as yet, as the ball is still held by TEC and will be, until after their HoB meeting near the end of Sept. and then, 30th September, when the Primates deadline is met.

    On Oct. 1st, the ball will be turned over to the GS Primates for them to begin running their plays.

    Due diligence requires that all preliminary issues are faced, overcome, accomplished or discarded, BEFORE the important work begins.

    Whether their strategy will succeed, whether a single orthodox Anglican province is crafted and becomes real, remains to be seen.

  19. seitz says:

    #9 — we have access to different facts. I have said all I can on the matter. I believe +RDW and the Primates are not done with Dar; that the Windsor Bishops require that for their own sense of Communion integrity; that TEC is slowly but surely walking apart; that a new College of Bishops from Duncan et al does not include the Network Bishops in toto; that actions now from 6 Primates may be a kind of ‘rod of Assyrian fury’ but also, negatively, could divide the GS Primates; that those who offer doomsday scenarios–RDW has sold us out, Windsor Bishops are ineffectual, end of story–are both poor on saying what the brave new anglicanism will look like, after putting facts on the ground has had its way, and better at impatience and insistence that nothing is happening, because it has not appeared in public on a blog.
    I do not think the Communion will work this way and I am also comforted that God knows this and hears the prayers of those who are working for support of Anglican Communion mission, beyond our present days of The Book of Judges.

  20. jamesw says:

    A few thoughts about this mess.
    1. I think it seems pretty clear now that whatever Rowan Williams intended to do, his Lambeth invitations have proven to be a monstrous blunder. He has undermined his credibility with a large number of the primates and conservative leadership. Seitz, the ACI, and others may be right that RDW has some masterful strategy in the end, but for now they look increasingly like a battered woman defending her abusing husband, grasping at whatever straws they can to excuse inexcusable behavior.

    2. The orthodox have worked long, hard and patiently at the Windsor/Dromantine/DES process and I am not convinced that now is the time to abandon the effort. Yes, it MAY be a sham. Yes, RDW may do nothing. But I think we need to give it this last chance. It is only 4 months away! If TEC rejects DES formally and according to the procedure set out, and if the ACCanada approves SSB’s this month, and RDW does nothing and blocks the primates from acting, then yes, by all means, the time will have come to put a bullet to the head of a dying Canterbury club that is incapable of disciplining itself. But why the rush now? Trust the primates!

    3. At the same time, I am not so convinced that Matt Kennedy and Christopher Seitz need to be on the opposite sides. Past history shows that Rowan Williams will try to let TEC off as easily as he possibly can UNLESS he is PRESSURED to do otherwise. I agree with Seitz that for now the DES process needs to be adhered to. I agree with Kennedy that RDW will do absolutely nothing unless a big fire is lit under his hindquarters.

    4. I think that the fire to be lit under RDW’s hindquarters must be big and hot in order for him to act as he should. Accordingly, I think it is important for conservative Anglicans to have a “bad cop.” I think that the Duncan/Akinola/Kennedy/Orombi/Nzimbi group can play that bad cop role. They can present to Rowan Williams what the future will look like if he keeps dithering and avoiding action.

    5. On the flip side, it is also important for us to have a “good cop.” The good cop can point the way forward for Williams in a way that the bad cop can’t. The Gomez/Windsor bishops/ACI can act as good cop. They can present to Williams what needs to be accomplished. The good cops can say “do this, or face that.”

    6. Lacking a bad cop, Williams will probably ignore what the good cop faction will advise him. Lacking a good cop, Williams will just be upset and angered at the threats and forceful actions of the bad cop faction. We need both. Both are essential to our success.

    7. The liberals already have this game down to a science. The wackadoo TEC bishops like Ingham, Robinson, Bruno, Chane, etc. play the part of the liberal bad cop. Then you’ve got Kearon, KJS, etc., who act the part of the good cop.

    Let’s stop the infighting. We need to realize that this is a political fight. It shouldn’t be, but it is. Let’s win the political fight if we can – it is still an open question. Let’s not snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Once we have won the political fight, then it will be time to reform the Anglican Communion (and I agree wholeheartedly with Matt that that will include a definition of membership that is not in the hands of a single British government appointee).

  21. Peter says:

    Well, I rather suspect that Kenyas decision will be accepted by all and sundry at one level or another soon enough. Like others, I’d hope very much that these are only temporary entities.

    Perhaps of more concern is the rift between the communion and non-communion conservatives. I have seen, first hand, the same thing here North of the border, between the Federation and Network approach.

    The trouble is that while all folks have similar aims, the methods are different and the reality is that the methods are held with as much passion as the aims. The question seems to be is whether we are able to work with folks whose methods we seriously disagree with? The kind of anger I have seen flying about, passive-aggressive or otherwise, just underlines the problem.

    One other thing. I have wondered what RW is up to, as has the rest of the Anglican world perhaps? The proof in that pudding will not come until after September I guess. I have sometimes thought he is inviting and allowing TEC/ACC to uninvite themselves by their actions? It would fit his character.

  22. robroy says:

    Why now? I think it is clear that this is in response to the ABC’s near-unconditional invitations to the arrogantly defiant HoB. Probably ABb Nzimbi started the process to ordain Bp elect Atwood the day after the announcements of these invitations. The ABC has himself to thank for this. He sends a message and the GS sends a message.

  23. cssadmirer says:

    Can someone explain to me why Seitz-ACI is so upset and angry here and on Stand Firm? Prayers for him and all of us in this difficult time.

  24. Peter says:

    I *think* I just did. You are welcome to disagree!

  25. Grandmother says:

    I don’t understand. ++Akinola, ++Orombi, et al have already stated that this is a TEMPORARY situation,and they will gladly hand the parishes back if there is someone/something to hand them back to.
    Even ECUSA, IF they repent and mend their ways.

    I have been among those who whined and complained because the Network, +Duncan, et al, did not seem to be doing anything, and if they were would not tell us about it. I apologize, here and now.

    Now they’ve at leasted hinted at what they are doing, and what happens, loud grumbling, mumbling, and armchair quarterbacking.

    What would you have them do? Embargo any plans, ignore what’s going on? Then, after Sept 30, on the off-chance something happens as punishment/disapproval of ECUSA, suddenly jump up and start planning? Meanwhile, these parishes contain souls, adult and children.

    I know, lets wait til September 30, Lambeth 08, or maybe 10 years for a covenant. Then we can pick up the broken pieces, and start American Anglicanism all over again…

    Sorry folks, but this comments on this thread seem very disturbing. This is the day the Lord has made, rejoice and be glad in it.

    Grannie Gloria

  26. jamesw says:

    Grannie and others: Let me be clear. I do NOT oppose the planning and pending imposition of the plans as described. Not at all. I don’t even oppose Kenya adding to the alphabet soup at this point. I also do not oppose planned gatherings after Sept. 30, nor to I oppose the preliminary planning for a coordinated new American jurisdiction.

    What I would oppose is the actual implementation of a coordinated GS primatial solution prior to Sept. 30. Why? Because that would be undercutting the DES Communique.

    I think that it is a GOOD thing to PREPARE for TEC’s rejection openly and with detail. It is a GOOD thing for Rowan to see what will happen if he continues his dithering and maintains invitations to bishops who have repeatedly rejected the mind of the Communion.

    But I think that the DES reception process is not set to end yet. We should not short circuit that ourselves, but allow TEC to be the one to reject it.

  27. steveatmi5 says:

    Perhaps Jordan did not intend it, but phrases like “the Duncan crowd” are profoundly disrespectful and unhelpful.

  28. plainsheretic says:

    Seeing is beleiving. When I see one or all of these new diocese/ asscociatiions/ mission outpost/ networks actuall combine and give up thier own kingdoms, then i’ll beleive that all this we “temporary.” I think they are permanant. I don’t think the AMIA or CANA or the Network or the new thingy will ever truly become one. They just can’t. There are fundemental disagreements within these seperate movements. If not, then why not combine as each is formed?

  29. jamesw says:

    Plainparson: They are all under the authority of a primate. All it takes to unite them is the primates (that is the primates involved) getting together and giving the say-so.

  30. plainsheretic says:

    Are you sure about that? It that were so, why the seperate primates now? Why all the seperate consecrations? I won’t beleive it until I see it.

    CANA and AMIA have seperate legal structures. The Network is all over the place.

    Some of these primates have a vested intrest in keeping thier extra-provincial churches. It pays- AMIA sends 10% to Rwanda! Do you think Rwanda wants to give that up? I doubt it.

  31. seitz says:

    Gosh, I suppose I ought to feel honored in some way to be in a contest with +Matt Kennedy! This depiction catches me off guard, however. My only concern ever was that ACI was being massively misconstrued by Kennedy and his followers. I never sought, nor has ACI sought, some sort of equal footing with a combatant. I really do not know what the so-called fed-con position is, but I have gotten some clearer picture recently. ACI does not run a blog. I got involved because I felt ACI was, frankly, under attack for our work with very fine Bishops of ECUSA, including MacPherson, Howe, Salmon, Steenson, Lilliebridge, Herlong, MacDonald, Smith, et al. For our efforts, we were charged by Kennedy with breaking up the Network, dividing conservatives, being supporters of a feckless +RDW, and on it goes. So far as I am aware, I never sought to delineate a strong alternative and attack it with the weaponry of my own blog.

    Is Kennedy within his rights to do this? You bet. Have we sought to do the same, armed with a blog and a provocative position meant to state that all is not going to work, and he and his friends are to blame, etc. No we have not. The difference is that ACI is actually involved in hard work with Primates, CA Bishops, chairing meetings and holding conferences, etc. Matt Kennedy is not doing that, nor should he, I suppose. He is a parish priest with (an amazing amount of) time to run a blog.

    I wish him no ill. But I never thought ACI was chiefly about finding an equal combatant in Matt Kennedy and fighting him as a non-ally. Perhaps we have made a big mistake in discussing our views on blogs. I know I have worried about that. But I got involved because I did not like constant aspersions being cast about our work, much of it inaccurate, to my mind. It was always a toss-up between saying, ‘it is a blog, who cares, don’t dignify this’ and ‘this medium requires response.’

    I just bristle at the idea of ACI being some kind of foil or alternative position to Matt Kennedy. I really can only speculate about his private and public views and so far as I know, he is running a blog, not actually working closely, almost full time, with principals in this struggle.

    I say this not to diminish his work–it is what it is! And God knows what it all means. But there is a distinct level of incommensurability, so far as I am concerned. I am sorry if my contributions here have confused that matter, but I judged it appropriate to speak up in defense.

  32. seitz says:

    #23–many thanks indeed for your prayers for ACI. We have ten years in this struggle and have only ever been able to work on–I have surmised–because people like you kept us in your prayers. Please keep them up. Angry? Not in the least. Concerned to protect our work from misrepresentation? You bet. Smart to do this on a blog? I am not so sure!! So, in all this, your prayers are welcome.

  33. Philip Snyder says:

    The situation is what it is. I met (briefly) Canon Attwood today at Bishop Jecko’s funeral and was impressed with his love for Jesus. The funeral was a wonderful service of praise and thanksgiving to God for the life and ministry of Bishop Jecko.

    I also met (briefly) Bishop Minns. The funeral was held at Christ Church, Plano – a former parish of the Diocese of Dallas and now an AMiA parish.

    I pray that these three strains of Anglcanism – AMiA, CANA and this new one (whose acronym I forget) – can work with the orthodox bishops (Windsor, Network or Camp Allen – take your pick) to form a united Anglican force for the spread of the Gospel. If we can meet around the Altar and share the body and blood of Jesus when a dear friend of all dies, then why can’t we work together to witness the Good News of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ. Why can’t we make our first and greatest apology “See how they love each other?”

    Phil Snyder

  34. seitz says:

    PS–I am very busy with work in Canada–the General Synod is about to commence–and so will be out of commission. That is probably good news for most people here! I apologise if my remarks have not furthered the cause of Christ. That would not be a good thing, and perception on a blog is more weighty than intention. Good wishes, in Christ!

  35. Sarah1 says:

    RE: “Y’know, it’d be nice to have someone here from the +Duncan group participating in the conversation here on the blogs. The ACI folks participate quite regularly, and I try to add my voice to theirs as well. I would really like to have someone from the +Duncan crowd explain how this all isn’t going to lead to one great big mess. If they’re so confident that it won’t, then they must have their reasons. But it’s a pretty darn important discussion, and it’d be nice if we could all join in. I don’t like the idea of a “new orthodox Communion” being thought up behind closed doors. There are a whole lot of people with pretty solid orthodox creds who apparently aren’t being consulted here. Everyone knows what ACI thinks, and they’ve talked with us here at great length. What’s +Duncan’s big plan?”

    Jordan, it does not seem as if you have heard the Federal Conservatives.

    When you say “I would really like to have someone from the +Duncan crowd explain how this all isn’t going to lead to one great big mess” I cannot imagine your not having heard people say “yep — it’s going to be one great big mess.”

    That is a given. We are in a mess. And the Federal Conservatives have pretty much decided that the Anglican Communion will not discipline itself, and so it is better to leave the Anglican Communion. Will it make a mess? Sure. Will it be any more of a mess than the current situation? Probably not. So . . . each group is dividing out as to which sort of mess it is willing to live with. Clearly, the FedCons are unwilling to live with an undisciplined Communion.

    RE: “I don’t like the idea of a “new orthodox Communion” being thought up behind closed doors. There are a whole lot of people with pretty solid orthodox creds who apparently aren’t being consulted here.”

    Jordan — I suspect that the Fed Cons are well aware of what the Communion Conservatives believe. And they don’t believe what the Communion Conservatives believe. So why would they wish to consult with Communion Conservatives, when the two camps simply do not agree on the nature of the problems, the nature of the church, communion, how to form a unified body, etc. etc.

    I don’t see that the Fed Cons are thinking up a “new orthodox Communion” behind closed doors. I see that they are thinking up a “body with which we could be a part of” behind closed doors. The two are very different things. It seems clear to me that the Fed Cons have decided “oh well . . . looks as if discipline will not occur — who’s willing to get together and move on together to a new entity?”

    I don’t think that they flatter themselves that the Communion Conservatives will consider their new body, made for themselves.

  36. Peter says:

    #34 Perhaps I will see you there. Are you working with Essentials?

  37. Karen B. says:

    James W. your comments have been really interesting, but I was especially fascinated by your #20.

    I bet you just made Matt Kennedy’s day and perhaps even his week or month!

    Accordingly, I think it is important for conservative Anglicans to have a “bad cop.” I think that the Duncan/ Akinola/ Kennedy/ Orombi/ Nzimbi group can play that bad cop role.

    A lowly parish priest (and a young’un too) in the company of 3 Primates and a diocesan bishop who is also the Network moderator. Wow. The heights to which good blogging can take one! LOL!!! 😉

  38. Karen B. says:

    Chris Seitz, I appreciate your participation on the blogs of late. For better or worse, they have proven an important and useful resource as we try and find a way forward through this mess. It has been incredibly helpful to be able to hear and read perspectives from those as different as you and Matt Kennedy, etc. as well as our “worthy opponents” as Sarah would call them. Perhaps it’s a public process of iron sharpening iron. We all get our ideas tested and reshaped a bit in this process of public debate. I’ve been challenged countless times to move beyond a merely emotional response “what I’d like” to think things through on a more systematic / theological level because of what I’ve read on the blogs. So, thanks to you and your ACI colleagues for continuing to give us so much to think and pray through. So much of your work has been essential reading.

    If you seem to be under attack by many on the blogs, I would think that it is partly because you’re vocal and your work is out there, available to be dissected and analyzed. You’re a sounding board in that sense, people can bounce their ideas off of yours and may thus tend to specifically identify in what ways their positions differ from yours. Not an easy position to be in, but I think it’s a sign of the respect so many have for your (plural) work and a recognition of its import. Also, as someone noted above, there is less high-level material being publicly disseminated from the Fed-Con side to justify what the group that is talking of splitting off from ECUSA within the Network is thinking. (+Duncan, +Iker, +Schofield etc.) So while many of us speculate about their plans, strategies and motives, there is not something very tangible to critique…

    Anyway, we will make sure to add you and your work to the prayer list over on Lent & Beyond, especially in relationship to the Canadian General Synod. Thanks for your faithful service.

  39. William#2 says:

    Well, I don’t say much around here anymore, but I would like to comment on the Seitz-Kennedy discussion and perhaps bring it into a larger context. Rev. Seitz appears to be an academic think tank sort of guy who hangs out in the big councils and synods he refers to; Rev. Kennedy is a parish priest. So its fine for Rev. Seitz to urge patience and continued meetings and dialogue in an effort to reach a “communion solution” from his point of view, but Rev. Kennedy and his wife Rev. Anne are there at a parish as shepherds with actual souls to care for on a daily basis.
    Rev. Seitz, sorry, but there was only so much I could endure for the sake of your communion. Some of us who are in relationship with Jesus Christ simply cannot take the daily pain of being part of a church in rebellion against Him, whose leaders denigrate Him, and teach others that its ok not to claim Him as our only means of salvation. Its hard enough to walk to and with the Lord; its REALLY hard to do, and harder still to bring others to Him, and all the while add the millstone of TEC about your neck.
    Rev. Seitz, if God has called you to this work thats fine; He frequently does things I don’t understand! But the patience you counsel in others, I humbly suggest you find in yourself, to understand that some of us simply can’t wait anymore for your church to end its rebellion against our God.

  40. seitz says:

    PS. For the avoidance of doubt, — My Dear Matt, I meant ‘parish priest’ as a vocation of respect! (I have six family members in three generations who labour/ed in this vocation full time). Odd business, blog communicating, all good wishes and Godspeed. C

  41. robroy says:

    Chris Seitz and the ACI have taken a lot of heat because they are trying to stand with all the instruments of unity and currently there is one instrument of unity who is seen as manipulative and duplicitous by many orthodox (and probably many liberals depending on the weather and time of day). He and they have also consistently against the safe havens of AMiA, CANA, etc: “anomalies”, “unhelpful”, “perhaps, necessary”, etc. Truly these organizations are much more on the battlefront suffering the darts and arrows sent out by the enemy, which, in this case, is my own church, than more mainstream organizations like the ACI. He and they are quick to point out the disunity in the ACN or GS. After every pronouncement, it seems we hear Prof Seitz saying “Well, they are hardly of one voice.” Where is there unity in all of this mess? Actually, the most unified front is from the common cause coalition that seems to be developing. Witness the accolades of the Kenya move: Nigeria, Uganda, Central Africa, Kenya, CANA, AMiA, Duncan, Iker.

    I do not believe that the alphabet soup is a bad thing. People have argued it is similar to the flotilla at Dunkirk. What is needed is strong leadership (as I believe Bp Duncan can provide) to bring these groups together after the battle.

    The ACI is meeting this summer. I hope that they restructure their planning to ally with Common Cause more closely (perhaps Bp Duncan would enjoy a jaunt to England to speak). I have contributed to ACI to help with this conference and encourage others to do the same. See their website.

  42. KAR says:

    I really appreciate the debates between Matt+ and Dr. Seitz. Often some of the truth of the current situation in the orthodox camp only comes out when one is holding the other accountable. Dr. Seitz really has added to these discussions and I’m personally glad he has joined us in blogosphere.

    However, I am concern about some of the tone between you two, sometimes it seems to go from passionate intellectual discourse to being a bit personal. Risking getting myself rapped up i this — I think post #40 is a personal defense of something outside of T19, maybe as Christians we can let some of that go?

    I due urge charity in our debates.

  43. Greg Griffith says:

    The difference is that ACI is actually involved in hard work with Primates, CA Bishops, chairing meetings and holding conferences, etc. Matt Kennedy is not doing that, nor should he, I suppose. He is a parish priest with (an amazing amount of) time to run a blog.

    Dr. Seitz,

    You have been increasingly shrill about the role of blogs and bloggers lately, and I can’t help but notice that it’s coincided with the ACI’s “inside strategy” finding itself on the ropes.

    The ACI began with an idea, and has pursued it with varying degrees of success. Stand Firm began with a different idea, and has pursued it with varying degrees of success. We do different things, and to belittle blogs because they don’t chair meetings and hold conferences is to misunderstand thoroughly the roles of both your organization and ours.

    Lately you have spent an extraordinary amount of time posting to blogs whose value you question at best, and dismiss with contempt at worst. That alone should settle the question (for you, anyway) of just how valuable the blogs are; but if it doesn’t, just ask yourself this the next time you wonder how much power the blogs wield: How different would the last 3 and half years have been in this debate, without TitusOneNine, Stand Firm, and CaNN?

  44. plainsheretic says:


    While your comments are directed at one person, they are public so I will respond.

    I don’t think there would have been much diffrence without the blogs you mentioned. The issues are fundemental, and I beleive the Primates, which is where most of the conversation/ decisions are made, would have gone down the same road. While a number of people read these three blogs, most who comment are inline with the editors view points, and I beleive evidence would show a large carry over between the three blogs readership.

    I think the coverage on CNN, FOX, and other news networks and in the papers contributed more to the highlighting of the issue than anything else. Also individual rectors, bishops, and intrested lay people. The Blogs only offer one small vioce and maybe amplify, some voices, but few people really read them.

    You didn’t mention Virtueonline, who has been around the longest. He bost “millions” of readers. Probably more like a few thousand who repeat visit each day.

    I wouldn’t get too grandious about the blogs influence. Do people read them, yes! But most of it is repeat traffic by a realtivily small number of folks in comparison to the total membership of the Episcopal Church. Even if say 10,000 individuals read the blogs, it is still a very small portion of the church.

    One thing about blogs though, it does give rise to people who would not have been voices in the conversations otherwise.

  45. steveatmi5 says:

    Plainsperson, while you are to be commended for reading viewpoints you diagree with, I would not give you high marks for your listening to them closely or understanding them very well. There are significant differences in the blogs you mention. Also, the reason Virtue online is not mentioned is because that is in a different category altogether, with its blatant inaccuracies and unhelpful rhetoric, etc. Your choice of verb there is apt–“boasts” indeed. It is a huge turn off and embarrassment to many of us.

    If you read the reappraising blogs, one of the things by which one is struck is the large lack of awareness of what occurs among reasserting Anglicans. Blogs are a lot more influential than you think. A VERY large number of leading anglicans and/or their offices, for example, monitor places like T19.

  46. plainsheretic says:

    The convesation earlier was about three blogs and there influence, and some about ACI’s work.

    In my comment above, i would say the same for the reappraising blogs. They are read by a few in comparison to the total number of members. They share in readership and thier influence is not as much as one might assume. If anything the reappriaser and reasserter blogs only is amplify- I don’t think they influence.

    Take the Dar meeting. While the various blogs reported information- the real influence was within the meetings and those close to the primates. The blogs are at most reporting devices. And, as I said before the give a vioce to people who would not have it otherwise.

  47. seitz says:

    Mr Griffith–You are doubtless correct, if a little provocative for rhetorical value!. Points taken all the same. Very best wishes and every success with the enterprise. Apologies to all for any perceived intemperance. Would not want that!

  48. KAR says:

    #46 Plainsperson,

    I must confess that I agree with #47’s comment. Blog are read and even attempted to be manipulated by some very powerful people in the discussion.

    In fact, I may have been the one expressing “uninformed concerns” about +Minns installation, but I was responding to a story in the Washington Times when made some comments (I had a very minority position and this story was not widely circulated on the blogs).

    So an odd thing happen, either +Duncan is accusing various other members of the Episcopate of being ill informed of their own intentions and opinions or the Washington Times of improper & poor journalism or he didn’t know about the one article but did know about some ‘uninformed’ idiot (my word for myself) babbling on a blog. I think the last one is most likely, if so then blogs had a greater influence that the mass media in this one instance.

  49. Jody+ says:

    I have to disagree with those who say that the orthodox front represented by AMiA, CANA, a portion of the Network et al. is unified. Yes, they are unified when faced with a common enemy in the errors of the Episcopal Church, and support one another in efforts to provide various forms of oversight, however–and it’s a big however–there is the “fact on the ground” that there are multiple organizations of orthodox Anglicans with different structures, different affiliations and different viewpoints. If CANA were well loved, why would +Nzimbi not simply transfer oversight of his congregations to +Minns and Nigeria? If AMiA were well respected by all orthodox, why create CANA? The answers are complex in the sense that many parishes have disaffiliated with ECUSA and found safe-harbor where their rectors or other leadership already had relationships, be it with Belize, Uganda, Kenya etc… but the “facts on the ground” also include the fact that these groups haven’t found it in their hearts to join together organically, and common-cause, while it has a web site, hasn’t done a whole lot in most places to add cohesion to the flotilla at an organizational level. The cohesion there is, is ideological and would exist one way or the other since people view themselves as fighting different aspects of the same battles. But there is almost as much disunity among the orthodox as there is between the reasserters and reappraisers. AMiA still carries a lot of baggage with orthodox folks in ECUSA and, frankly it seems, in CANA as well. Over the past several years I’ve heard a lot of things from orthodox priests which can be summarized in the following way: AMiA bruised feelings because they left too early, cost this or that orthodox person a bishop election by taking parishes out of a diocese that had been on the fence, they’ve offended other orthodox folks by where they’ve decided to plant churches, by the fact that they’re based out of a parish whose membership in the Diocese of South Carolina is disputed, and–perhaps most importantly really–they’re mistrusted because their leadership structure isn’t traditional and it seems more corporate. Why else would +Minn’s feel it necessary to make the point that “CANA is a gift without strings” except to ease the concerns and take a shot at the organization of AMiA with it’s close ties to Rwanda? On the flip side, some people in AMiA have been felt to be abrasive by others who have stayed in ECUSA longer by making seemingly accusatory statements about how they should have come out of Babylon much sooner. Ditto the way some continuing Church members have reacted. The concern that there may soon be “more purple than people” is a legitimate one, especially given the fact that most people who are leaving the Episcopal Church don’t seem to be going to any of the other Anglican alternatives.

    Perhaps I’m cynical, but I think we may be giving too much credit for planning and forethought to decisions that are being made for immediate concerns without a lot of thought as to how a reorganization of all the disparate entities might occur. How many Bishops are there on the orthodox side these days? Will there be enough people to justify that many dioceses in whatever structure comes out of all this? Or will the Neo-Anglican orthodox movement wind up like the continuing church, despite it’s somewhat brighter beginning and languish in division and ego-centered conflict? Is our standard the cross of Jesus Christ or “for every tribe a flag?” These are just some of my concerns as I see events unfold. And what saddens me is that, while I worship Jesus the best in the Anglican tradition, at the moment none of the orthodox options is very attractive for a variety of reasons, but mostly because of disunity and the prevalence in one on one conversation of old conflicts. I’m a young man and a young priest, why do I want to waste my time working with bunch of old men fighting personality conflicts that are 10-30 years old?

    So, I’ve supported ACI and their goals. I consider myself a “Communion Conservative” because communion discipline and institutional integrity seems the best way to avoid competing cults of personality and petty conflict, and it seems to me that it’s the most faithful way to proceed–at least for the way I understand communion and discipline from the scriptures.

    And, as long as I’m rambling, I have to express my discomfort with the threats of some in the global south to boycott Lambeth? Why would they do that? After Lambeth 1998 the orthodox have a majority, any boycott may well give the reappraisers the victory they want. Saying this as humbly and respectfully as I can given the Godly leadership of the GS in the past, it would be a travesty if we allowed what appears to be a degree of pride to prevent us from saving the Communion and taking a stand for the Gospel in the councils of the Church. I’m sure there are a number of people on Kendell’s blog who know a great deal more about the workings of the communion, but it seems to me that there’s no way the reasserters could out vote the orthodox at Lambeth if the orthodox showed up. From my perspective, and I know others have expressed similar concerns, we seem to be poised to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Has there been any answer to the ACI’s questions as to why the Primates have yet to appoint their members of the pastoral council? Or +Rowan? The House of Bishop’s sneezes and the orthodox throw up their hands and start pushing their own agendas? Why not go ahead with the Dar Es Salaam plan with or without ECUSA’s official approval (adjusted accordingly of course), rather than run in such varied directions. If there is some master plan behind all of these things, then I’ll certainly recant my comments, but right now it just seems like people deciding to play different ball games on different courts while still claiming to be on the same one.

  50. plainsheretic says:

    Good insight. I agree. I think until we actually see real unity, not just kind letters showing support, the rhetoric is just that rherotic.
    I think there is too much to gain for many of the primates to simply let go. People forget the Archbishop of Nigeria asked Griswold to set up a seperate nigerian ministry long ago, when they were friends.

    There are to many divisions- and currently the rhetoric says they are uniting around common essentials- but I won’t beleive it till it happens.

  51. jamesw says:

    Dr. Seitz: I realize that you are not interested in being one of the star attractions in a “Seitz vs. Kennedy” match of the World Conservative Anglican Wrestling Federation. However, as has been noted in other posts, the debate between you and Kennedy has gotten rather personal.

    You seem to be saying to Kennedy that the FedCon position is about to undermine all of the ACI’s work in using the official channels to reform the Anglican Communion. Kennedy then responds that you and the ACI are mere dupes of Rowan Williams’ machinations and in so being are undermining any hopes of reform in the Anglican Communion.

    My point is to suggest that the end goal of both Seitz and Kennedy is a disciplined and disciplining orthodox Anglican Communion. From my perspective, the best way to achieve that goal is with a diversified set of forces. I don’t think that either the inside or outside strategies – on their own – will be sufficient. I also believe that both you and Kennedy are understating the problems inherent with your strategies, while perhaps overstating the problems with the opposing strategies.

  52. Connecticutian says:

    I will confess to having one foot in both the “Communion” and “Fed-Con” camps. I see the wisdom and integrity of the communion approach, and yet I am concerned about the here-and-now of my own family and parish needs. I don’t yet know where the Lord is going to put us, but I’m more concerned about being faithful to his call, than in supporting any particular strategy. What strategy can stand against his will, anyway?

    So, I’m grateful to both the ACI and the SF gang (among the many others) who contribute to the debates. (No need to get personal, though.)

    As an aside, I wonder if we assume too much that there’s a coordinated strategy responsible for every development in the mess? In this case, why do some assume that this is part of +Duncan’s “plan”? While I’m sure there’s a level of coordination and consultation, is it not just as possible that this is merely a development on the part of Kenya that +Duncan (and everybody else) has to react to? While I wish ++Nzimbi had waited until October, I now have a choice to bless him or curse him. I choose to bless him, and consider that we’re on the same side in this war.

  53. Dee in Iowa says:

    I started out by joining on Yahoo – which led me to TitusOneNine, David Virtue, Standing Firm, Baby Blue…..please never under estimate the power of the information furnished by the blogs. National news, CNN, Fox, and the like, have given very little coverage. The blogs have made it possible for me to learn about and find out about what TEC is doing. Believe me, those TEC members, who do not blog……are still in the dark and are hearing only what their parish priest and/or bishop want them to hear……
    I would never have heard of/about ACI and ACN were it not for the blogs furnishing me with the web pages…….

  54. Dale Rye says:

    I was following this discussion wondering what I might add when I came upon #51 by Jody+. That says what I would like to have said.

  55. robroy says:

    I have to disagree with those who say that the orthodox front represented by AMiA, CANA, a portion of the Network et al. is unified.

    What I said is that, in this whole mess, they are more unified than any other coalition. I think that the dismissal of the things that they are doing “because they are not unified” is disingenuous, a cheap shot. They are growing in influence in a light speed fashion. I have said that any solution to this mess will have to include them and anyone or any organization that seeks to exclude them in the final game plan (including ACI or the ABC) will be left out.

  56. Jody+ says:

    Robroy #57,

    I wasn’t responding directly to you, but in order to agree with you, I’d have to believe that there is a game plan. I don’t. And the more options for orthodox Anglicans proliferate, the less likely it will be that there will be anyone or any entity to put one together, especially if the orthodox don’t themselves listen to the primates meeting, which is the only entity, apart from Lambeth that would seem to be able to exert any authority over this whole chaotic mess. Individual primates and even groups of primates can do exactly what they have done–any real “solution” has to come from the primates meeting as a unit, otherwise it’s just a bunch of people doing their own thing.