Of the newly-formed-province-in-transition "Anglican Province in North America."
I watched some of the Live Stream video from Wheaton Evangelical Free Church in suburban Chicago community of Wheaton, Illinois for about as long as I could stomach it (I may have gone to EDS but I know enough not to preach in a chasuble, for pity's sake!), but I did hear Bishop Murdock say that it had been decided that Bob Duncan would be their new Archbishop.
Even called him, "Your grace." Duncan laughed and squirmed in his seat, but he was clearly enjoying every minute of it.
And the crowd went wild with applause.
Honest to God.
That's about the time I switched off.
Actually, they were just about to "formally subscribe" to the Jerusalem Declaration of the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON) and affirm GAFCON's Statement on the Global Anglican Future. That was more than enough for me.
Leaders of the Common Cause Partnership released the draft constitution of what they called "an emerging Anglican Church in North America" during the worship service. I'll be curious to read Brother Mark's take on it after he has a chance to read, mark and inwardly digest it.
You can find the ENS story here: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/79901_103344_ENG_HTM.htm
There were lots of people in attendance I didn't recognize, but I did see Jack Leo Iker, former bishop of Fort Worth. I also spotted David Anderson, and John Geurnsey, two former Episcopal priests who left TEC and were ordained by African bishops (I think Rwanda, but I fear I don't recall. Sorry.).
I thought I also saw Peter Beckwith, present bishop of Springfield, and Keith Ackerman, recently retired ("on the advice of my physician") bishop of Quincy and newly announced assisting bishop of Springfield (miraculous healing, no doubt).
It's all so very terribly sad.
Oh, not that they are leaving and forming a new Anglican Province. Good on them. God Bless and prosper the work of the ministry in the name of Jesus.
I hope they're happy, but I'm guessing it won't take three months before they start to play the same zero-sum "somebody else has to lose in order for us to win" game they've been playing with members of TEC but now, not having either uppity women or uppity LGBT people who want to be ordained priests, they'll do it with each other.
I'm being generous, giving them three months. If the issue of women's ordination doesn't get 'em, lay presidency will. The "Thirty Nine Articles" so dearly beloved by Evangelicals and loathed by Anglo Catholics will prove to be 39 pickets in the fence that will divide them even further.
Not only that, but I predict that the chances of their being "approved" by 2/3 of the Primates at their next or any meeting - or accepted by the Anglican Consultative Council - or invited to the Lambeth Conference by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 2018 is about the same as the chance of the largest snowball in the hottest places of hell.
It's not as much sad as it is monstrously pathetic.
They can call themselves "Anglican." That don't make it so. Anglicanism has always been about making room at the table - not casting those who don't agree with you into the outer darkness.
Meanwhile, I've been reading the latest issue of Christian Century, December 2, 2008 which arrived today - just in time to provide me a little intellectual diversion from the temptation to lower my IQ a few points by watching the goings on in Wheaton.
There, on page 19, I stumbled onto this newsflash:
"A Maryland appeals court has ruled that a suburban megachurch that split from the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church in 1999 must relinquish millions of dollars in property back to the denomination. The Heart Church Ministries in Temple Hills, Maryland, must turn over more than $30 million in property, including three sanctuaries, an office building and a large tract of property owned by the ministry, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals ruled in an opinion filed October 28. Thomas L. McCally, a lawyer for the denomination, views the decision as significant for the individual church and others with similar hierarchical structures."
Almost ten years in court, eh? But, they won. Right. The truth will have out.
Giddyup! Let's get on with it.
Meanwhile, I'm going to keep asking the question until someone answers:
I mean, if we can say "Archbishop Duncan" surely we can say 'it is finished.'