From THE CHURCH TIMES:
The Archbishop of Nigeria, the Most Revd Nicholas Okoh, and the Archbishop of Kenya, Dr Eliud Wabukala, suggested this week that the Archbishop of Canterbury should no longer chair the Primates’ Meeting. The chairman should instead be elected by the Primates themselves, they said.
Archbishop Okoh said: “My thought is that it will be better to have an Archbishop [of Canterbury] who is respected, honoured, for historical reasons, but that the Anglican Communion eventually should think about organising itself around a chairman, who will have a tenured office, of four or five years, and then hand over to another person.”
He continued: “It seems that the Church of England is not carrying along everybody in the Communion, and that is why you can see there is a crisis; if we will solve the problem, we have to change the system.”
Asked if any Primate, such as the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church in the US, would be eligible to stand as chairman, Dr Wabukala said that the position should be open to “those who subscribe to what the Anglican Communion stands for”. Asked to elaborate further, he said that the Jerusalem Declaration, which was drawn up at the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON) in Jerusalem in 2008 (News, 4 July 2008), “captures exactly what almost everybody is looking for”.
Now this is what happens when a person in a purely symbolic post gets ideas above his station and starts acting like he is the pope of the Anglican Communion and takes to politicking in order to gain more power for himself. Of course, it was only a matter of time before power grabbers such as the Head of the Family Firm and racist's with a chip on their shoulder would want a piece of the uber-archepiscopal action.
What the narrow minded bigots of unenlightened Bibliolatry are suggesting is actually, in the new dispensation foisted upon us by the machinations of Lambeth Palace during the last decade, perfectly reasonable. No democrat could argue against it. However, it is guaranteed to speed up the demise of the Anglican Communion. Remember, the English dioceses voted against the Anglican Covenant because they did not want to hand the running of their province over to foreign control. No way would they ever approve of this back door grab for pseudo-covenantal power by foreign prelates. And the US branch of the Anglican Communion won't even be invited to join, that much has been made patently obvious.
So, why go to all the expense of having an international (all expenses paid) fight over this if the outcome, the end of the Anglican Communion, is unavoidable? It would be less costly and less stressful if we just all became independent provinces claiming the title "Anglican" if we wish and united only by voluntary and casual agreement made between individual provinces. The bishops could still meet up for their ten year freebie in Canterbury; the primates could even boost their egos by having special meetings just for people with "arch" in front of their title (excluding the Head of the Family Firm who isn't a real archbishop). But no extra-provincial meeting, group, association or conference should have any authority to tie their provinces into any agreement whatsoever. It would work. I know it would work because that is how most of our social lives work. When you make friends with someone or fall in love with someone, you don't first sit down and decide on a whole set of rules that you both have to adhere to. Relationships are about constant accommodation and negotiation. No relationship is democratic. Our relationship with God is just the same. If God was the Archbishop of Nigeria humankind would have gone to hell in a handbasket on the eighth day of creation.