Updated: Archbishop of Canterbury sets out vision for 2017 primates meeting

Episcopal Church Anglican Consultative Council members issue statement on ACNS story's claims

Editor’s note: This post was updated at 5:05 p.m. EST Feb. 1 to add the following statement from the Episcopal Church’s three Anglican Consultative Council members in response to the Anglican Communion News Service story below.


Statement from the Episcopal Church’s members of the
Anglican Consultative Council

As the Episcopal Church’s members of the Anglican Consultative Council, we were dismayed to read in today’s Anglican Communion News Service (ACNS) an article that claims we did not vote on matters of doctrine or polity at the most recent meeting of the ACC, known as ACC-16, held in Lusaka, Zambia in April 2016. This report is wrong.

Each of us attended the entire ACC-16 meeting and voted on every resolution that came before the body, including a number that concerned the doctrine and polity of the Anglican Communion. As the duly elected ACC members of a province of the Anglican Communion, this was our responsibility and we fulfilled it.

It could be inferred from today’s ACNS story that we did not fulfill our voting responsibilities at ACC-16 to comply with a communique issued by the primates of the Anglican Communion in January 2016.  The communique sought to impose consequences on the Episcopal Church for its adoption of marriage equality at our 2015 General Convention. Such an inference would be incorrect.

At the beginning of ACC-16, the Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion issued a statement saying that it had “considered the Communiqué from the Primates and affirmed the relational links between the Instruments of Communion in which each Instrument, including the Anglican Consultative Council, forms its own views and has its own responsibilities.” After ACC-16 had concluded, six outgoing members of the Standing Committee released a letter reasserting that “ACC16 neither endorsed nor affirmed the consequences contained in the Primates’ Communiqué.”

As members of the Anglican Consultative Council, we thank God for the time we have spent with sisters and brothers in Christ from across the globe, and for the breadth and diversity of our global Anglican family. We are firmly committed to the Episcopal Church’s full participation in the Anglican Communion, and we hope that, in the future, our participation will be reported accurately by the Anglican Communion News Service.

Rosalie Simmonds Ballentine
Ian T. Douglas
Gay Clark Jennings
Episcopal Church members of the 16th Anglican Consultative Council, Lusaka, Zambia

The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings, left; Rosalie Simmonds Ballentine, second from right; and Connecticut Bishop Ian T. Douglas, right, pose April 18, 2016, with Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby during the 16th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Lusaka, Zambia. Photo: Mary Frances Schjonberg/Episcopal News Service


[Anglican Communion News Service] Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has written to every primate in the Anglican Communion to set out his hopes for the next Primates’ Meeting, which will take place in Canterbury Oct. 2-6.

In the letter, Welby sets out his vision for the meeting in Canterbury as an opportunity for relaxed fellowship and mutual consultation. He invites the primates to submit items for the agenda and says he’s aware of the pressures under which many of them live.

Full article.

Complete Episcopal News Service coverage of the ACC-16 meeting can be found here.

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