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England allowed to discuss Anglican Covenant: The Church of England Newspaper, June 17, 2012 p 2. June 21, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Consultative Council, Anglican Covenant, Church of England, Church of England Newspaper.
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Canon Elizabeth Paver with Canon Kenneth Kearon of the ACC

The standing committee of the Anglican Consultative Council has held that the rejection of the Anglican Covenant by the Church of England will not affect the Archbishop of Canterbury’s role as president or Canon Elizabeth Paver’s role as vice-chairman of the ACC.

In a statement released on 1 June 2012 summarizing the ACC Standing Committee’s 30 May to 1 June meeting in London, the Anglican Communion News Service reported that “The Standing Committee received an update on the progress of the Anglican Communion Covenant. It was noted that eight Provinces had endorsed the Covenant to date, in some cases with a degree of qualification. They were the only responses received so far by the Secretary General. The committee also noted that the President, Chair, and Vice-Chair all hold their offices other than as representatives of their Provinces.”

The ACNS also reported “there was general agreement that no timeframe should yet be introduced for the process of adoption of the Covenant by Provinces. The Standing Committee will return to this question following ACC-15.”

Under the terms of the Anglican Covenant, provinces that do not ratify the agreement would not be able to participate in decision-making about the covenant.  While the Church of England cannot reconsider the covenant until 2015, the Standing Committee carved out an exception to this rule to allow the Archbishop of Canterbury and Mrs. Paver, the Church of England’s lay representative to the ACC to remain part of the process – though not as a representatives of the Church of England.

The desire to continue talking about the covenant past ACC-15 in New Zealand is unlikely to change the political calculus within the Anglican Communion.  Scotland’s rejection of the Covenant last week makes passage of the agreement unlikely.

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

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