Who is going to Lambeth? Where is Lambeth going?

Jun 17, 2022 by

by Andrew Goddard, Psephizo:

The Lambeth Conferences opens on July 26th, just over a month away. In recent days there has been quite a flurry of activity—including two announcements from the Archbishop of Canterbury—which has highlighted some of the challenges that it will face.

The first communication was the text of a letter sent on 27th May by Archbishop Justin and Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon (Secretary General of the Anglican Communion) to the Primates of the three provinces which have so far refused to attend the Conference (Nigeria, Rwanda and Uganda). This was in response to a statement from these Primates (who are members of GAFCON’s Primates’ Council, which includes 4 other Communion Primates and 2 other non-Communion Primates) following the Communique released after the March Primates’ Meeting that they had also not attended. In the course of writing this piece the Primates have replied with an even more robust letter. Worryingly, their response seems to deny the indisputable fact that Lambeth I.10 not only upholds traditional teaching but speaks against homophobia. Their letter also, as in earlier correspondence by the Archbishop of Nigeria, uses language which many will find offensive and in contravention of those parts of I.10 (warning against “irrational fear of homosexuals” and calling for “listening to the experience of homosexual persons and assuring them that they are loved by God”) as well as poor use of Scripture. Its reference to Sodom and Gomorrah, for example, fails to recognise that there is a significant consensus including among traditionalists that warns against simplistic appeals to this text in current disagreements (Richard Hays says it is “actually irrelevant to the topic” (Moral Vision of the New Testament, p. 381) and Robert Gagnon that “to the extent that the story does not deal directly with consensual homosexual relationships, it is not an ‘ideal’ text to guide contemporary Christian sexual ethics” (The Bible and Homosexual Practice, p. 71) and that it has historically been misused in damaging ways.

The second release was a short video in which Archbishop Justin announced that instead of issuing no statements (like the 2008 Conference) or issuing resolutions (as at all 13 Conferences from 1867 to 2008) the 2022 Conference will issue Calls, a development explained in more detail on the Conference website and in a short 5 page booklet.

Read here


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