Sunday, February 08, 2004

Aftermath. Martyn Minns statement in today's TFN on the Virginia Council held last weekend:
Council Aftermath
The 209th Annual Council of the Diocese of Virginia took place last weekend. It was a painful time for many of us. The Diocese is profoundly divided. The hostility and anger displayed by those in favor of the actions of General Convention was never far from the surface. No substantial actions were taken but I left enormously saddened by the experience. The divisions are deep and growing deeper.

Where does this leave Truro? First of all, I am very thankful for the faithful witness of our clergy and people. I was overwhelmed by the number of people
from around the Diocese who made a point of telling me how grateful they are for the stands that we have taken. Our witness to the transforming truth of the
Gospel has never been more important.
For many, we have become a lighthouse of hope.

Where do we go from here? We will continue to stand firm. We will stay engaged in mission. We will work on building up the Network of Anglican Communion Dioceses and Parishes. In the next few days you will be hearing more about the role that the Network will play in the wider communion. Those provinces that have been dismayed and alienated by ECUSA are increasingly looking to the Network to be their Anglican partner in the USA.

We are also working on strengthening the life of the Network within the Diocese of Virginia. Detailed structural proposals have been developed and are being refined. Our goal is to find a way to function within the constitutional framework but exercise our mission and ministry without compromise. One of the positive developments at Council was the recognition that there are many more congregations who share our perspective and are anxious to walk with us.

One final comment about the Reconciliation Commission – I do believe that as Christians we have an obligation to work for reconciliation whenever and wherever we are given the opportunity. However, the defining issue for us is not one of unreconciled relationships but of two different understandings of Truth. This is a spiritual battle for the Church that will not be won in a Commission but only by prayer and the full armor of God.

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