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ACC won’t let Uruguay go: The Church of England Newspaper, December 9, 2012, p 5. December 12, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Consultative Council, Church of England Newspaper, La Iglesia Anglicana del Cono Sur de America.
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Holy Trinity Cathedral, Montevideo

The Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council has declined to back the July 2012 request from the Diocese of Uruguay to allow it to secede from the Iglesia Anglicana del Cono Sur (de América).  Meeting last month before the start of ACC general meeting in Auckland, the standing committee turned down Uruguay’s plea to move from the conservative Southern Cone to the liberal Anglican Episcopal Church of Brazil.

The ACC recommended Uruguay focus on electing a new bishop to succeed the Rt. Rev. Miguel Tamayo who was to retire last June. However the diocese responded that this advice was unhelpful as it had elected the former general secretary of the Anglican Church of Canada, Archdeacon Michael Pollesel to be its bishop, but his election was not ratified by the Southern Cone’s House of Bishops.

The Anglican Journal reported Uruguay would hold another election, but it was not optimistic that its choice of bishop would pass muster with the wider province as grave “missiological, philosophical and theological differences” remained.

On 12 Nov 2010 the diocese voted to secede from the Cono Sur after the provincial synod declined to authorize the ordination of women priests.  Uruguay had proposed the women priest resolution, which was passed by the lay and episcopal orders, but defeated in the clergy order at the provincial synod in Buenos Aires.

The diocese had “sought to allow a diocesan option in the matter, rather than Provincial wide adoption, so that the diocese could proceed to minister within a very difficult agnostic milieu. Uruguay felt that after a nine year hiatus since the last vote for approval, a patient wait would be rewarded. That was not the result and so the Uruguayan Synod took this measure to move away from the Province,” provincial spokesman Bishop Frank Lyons of Bolivia said in a statement given to the press.

The 12 – 15 November 2011 meeting in Asunción, Paraguay of the provincial synod rejected Uruguay’s requested to secede, but adopted a motion requesting a study in the feasibility of dividing the province into Atlantic and Pacific halves with Peru, Bolivia and two dioceses in Chile comprising one province and Argentina, Northern Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay comprising the second.

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.