The serious actions of the bishops and the archbishops that are driving the Prayers of Love and Faith process are tantamount to a devastating mis-use of power and are threatening to ‘dissolve the glue that holds the church together’, argues Andrew Goddard, in his most recent article, published by Living Church.
“We have archbishops openly rejecting the teaching they vowed to uphold. The bishops are showing a lack of respect for a clear, recognisable link between liturgy and doctrine, refusing to follow the proper synodical processes for introducing new (particularly controversial) liturgy in the life of the church, side-lining public theological reasoning and the work of FAOC, and possibly seeking to introduce new guidance contrary to existing doctrine without the proper synodical process that respects the principle of bishops not acting on their own but always as bishops in synod. Alongside this they are also effectively tearing the Church of England away from the Anglican Communion and wider church catholic”, says Goddard.
He argues that these are not minor technical matters but are threatening to tear apart the Church of England.
“The bishops appear to be abandoning precious gifts that have helped preserve, structure, and cultivate our often fragile common life together across our differences. They are disregarding and undermining well-established, tried and tested, theologically and pastorally (not simply legally) founded principles and practices that enable “good disagreement.” It is, however, only by living within their constraints that bishops will nurture trust and embody integrity, especially as we navigate contentious proposed changes in our teaching and practice”, he continues.
Read more here