You have to wonder sometimes, especially when he makes comments like this:
The Archbishop of Canterbury warned yesterday that damaging infighting over women bishops and gay priests could result in a permanent split in the Anglican Communion.
No freaking way. Somebody call Geraldo. This could be the story of the century.
Was he not at the press conference when the new Anglican structures were unveiled? You know, the ones set up to enable the conversion of potentially hundreds of thousands of Rowan's nominally existent flock.
Dr Rowan Williams stressed that he did not “want or relish” the prospect of division. He called on the Church of England and Anglicans worldwide to step back from a “betrayal” of God’s mission and to put the work of Christ before schism.
Tell me, Rowan, what is this God's mission of which you speak? Might it be a small problem that your peeps in the "Communion" can't even agree on what that is?
Referring to the unity document currently being developed as a way of finding a common doctrine, Dr Williams admitted: “It may be that the covenant creates a situation in which there are different levels of relationship between those claiming the name of Anglican. I don’t at all want or relish this, but suspect that, without a major change of heart all round, it may be an unavoidable aspect of limiting the damage we are already doing to ourselves.”
Interesting how he is preaching about unity, but basically lays down the reasons for why unity among Protestants is impossible. "Finding common doctrine" is an impossibility for those who find their true authority in their own wills.
The best that Rowan can do is propose multiple levels of common ruin:
In such a structure, some churches would be given full membership of the Anglican Communion, with others on an outside, lower-level track with only observer status on some issues.
Sort of like having different tiers of mileage points or discounts at Sears. For all practical purposes, it sounds to me like acknowledging there is a schism, but being imaginative enough to come up with a bunch of different labels for the schismatics to avoid actually using the s-word. It's not that there is one Lord, one Faith, and one baptism. There are multiple shades of each. How could something this brilliant not work?
It reminds me of Stripes where Bill Murray points out that it's erroneous to claim that a shirt is clean or dirty. There are many subtle levels to be considered.