Canadian Anglicans reduce role at council: Limited participation in Anglican Consultative Council

May 31, 2005

Like their Episcopal colleagues in the U.S., Canada’s Anglican church representatives will “attend but not participate fully” in the June meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Nottingham, England.

The decision was made May 8 at the conclusion of a meeting in Toronto of the Council of General Synod, the church’s governing body between triennial meetings of the General Synod.

The move means that Canadian Anglican churches will give up their voting and speaking rights at the meeting of the global church to appease conservatives angered by their support of same-sex unions. The Canadians will also take part in a parallel hearing to explain their stance on the blessing of same-sex unions.

The decision was in response to a February request by the primates of the church that the U.S. and Canadian Anglicans voluntarily withdraw from the council. Each church has been allotted 90 minutes to “set out the thinking behind [its] recent actions” on same-sex unions and the ordination of gay bishops.

Canadian Anglican delegates at the meeting also concluded unanimously that the blessing of same-sex unions “is a matter of doctrine, but not core doctrine in the sense of being creedal.” Earlier, Canadian bishops approved a two-year moratorium on the blessing of same-sex unions. -Religion News Service