We are pleased to announce the establishment of an association of bishops in the Anglican Church of Canada who are committed to a policy of ‘gracious restraint’, embodied in observing the three-fold moratoria as enjoined by the Windsor Report (1). Between ourselves we agree to observe the discipline of the Windsor moratoria until such time as there is clarity in the Communion about the final status of the Anglican Covenant and our mutual obligations.
The purposes of the association will be:
1. To provide fellowship, support and accountability for those who are committed to remaining within the Anglican Church of Canada and the Anglican Communion;
2. To encourage some of our episcopal colleagues who are themselves in dioceses deeply conflicted on matters dividing the Church;
3. To preserve and promote the conditions for constructive discussion of the nature of Communion and the place of the Covenant, particularly in light of General Synod’s express will that we study the Anglican Covenant;
4. To respond to a call issuing from across the Church for greater episcopal leadership regarding matters threatening our fellowship; and
5. To issue a message to the wider Communion that there is an association of Canadian bishops who greatly value the efforts being made to strengthen our common life through the Covenant.
The association is open to any others who share in these commitments and purposes.
+Stephen Andrews (Algoma) +Fraser Lawton (Athabasca)
+William Anderson (Caledonia) +Andrew Atagotaaluk (Arctic)
+Michael Hawkins (Saskatchewan) +Larry Robertson (Yukon)
(1)‘Gracious restraint’ was urged on the Communion by the Primates’ (‘A Letter from Alexandria to the Churches of the Anglican Communion’ (2009), para 12) and was a factor in developing the Anglican Covenant (see report of the Covenant Design Group, April 2009 (The Ridley Cambridge Report of the Covenant Design Group), para 3.2.5). The three-fold moratoria include: 1. consecration of clergy to the office of Bishop who are living in a same gender relationship, 2. the authorization of public rites of blessing for same gender unions, and 3. interventions by Bishops into ecclesiastical provinces other than their own. These were affirmed at ACC14 in Jamaica 2009.
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