I am both amazed and delighted that the Anglican Covenant was defeated in Wakefield. Some of us spent time scrabbling to get information about what happened. I didn't even know that the debate was happening. Some dioceses have lots of people who are part of our 'No Anglican Covenant' campaign, but Wakefield is certainly not one of them. I will have to visit the town when I am better to pay tribute, it has now been dubbed 'Wakeful'.
As usual, I feel extremely frustrated about the lack of information available. I have drawn a blank from the diocesan website. How is it I can find out exactly how many runs have been scored in a cricket match the other side of the world, but I can't find out the information on an important diocesan vote? I did my usual job of ranting to myself about the Church of England getting into the twenty-first century! (Am I the only one who is perpetually frustrated by this?)
Anyway, the information that I think is accurate is as follows:
Laity 10 for 23 against,We hastily put together a Press Release, telling people about the news. I was clearly not the only one who was surprised because one well known journalist responded with a single word..... 'gosh'. I believe there will be quite a bit in the Church Times this week on the Anglican Covenant, so look out for that.
Clergy 16 for and 17 against with 1 abstention
and Bishops 2 for
Tentatively I have been given a bit of a feel about the points made in the Wakefield debate - that it was one thing for people to put themselves out of communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury, but a very different thing for the Archbishop to put himself out of communion with them. There were concerns made about how this would affect our relationship with churches in the Porvoo Communion, and a general feel that excluding people isn't a good way of resolving disputes, conversations should continue.
The points in favour were that we've come so far with this process that we may as well sign up to it and there isn't any alternative on the table.
Lichfield Diocese are the next to debate the Covenant - there is a rather proud boast that 'Lichfield Diocese could be first to adopt Anglican Communion Covenant', which makes it sound like a bit of a rubber stamp job. An alternative title to the article could be 'Lichfield Diocese could be the second to reject the Anglican Communion Covenant'... just saying. Anyway, they have Graham Kings as their only guest speaker , who has declared that 'The Anglican Covenant is the only way forward', we wait to see whether the people of the Lichfield Diocese agree.
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