The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, urged the worldwide Anglican community on Tuesday to adopt an agreement designed to maintain unity over divisive issues such as gay bishops and same-sex unions.
"It is an illusion to think that without some changes the Communion will carry on as usual," the archbishop told the General Synod.
"The unpalatable fact is that certain decisions in any province affect all," he said.
"If we ignore this, we ignore what is already a real danger, the piece-by-piece dissolution of the Communion and the emergence of new structures in which relation to the Church of England and the See of Canterbury are likely not to figure significantly." (Ah, there's the rub)
Williams said the pact would not create a centralized system, and that it was "dispiriting to see the Covenant still being represented as a tool of exclusion and tyranny."