By ACNS staff
Members of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) are today and tomorrow reflecting on the present and future of the Instruments of Communion.
In his introduction to the group discussions on this issue, Australian bishop the Rt Revd Stephen Pickard said IASCUFO had been given a ‘very specific mandate’ by the last ACC meeting to reflect on the role and responsibility of the Lambeth Conference, the Primates’ Meeting, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the ACC.
Referring to the report that had been sent to ACC members, IASCUFO Vice Chair Bp Pickard said “the commission had decided to begin with an introductory report which outlines the historical development of the Instruments of Communion.”
He told members that the reason for doing this was because “it would be difficult, if not impossible” to find ways of enhancing the Instruments without first understanding their history.
He went on to highlight the theological reflection on the Instruments in the report and said that there needed to be a proper understanding of the Instruments as a gift for the Communion that is primarily about relationships.
“The Instruments of Communion can lose their focus,” he said. “Their primary concern is the mission of God. Their horizon should be God’s work in the world. All deliberations, arguments [and] desire for corporate discernment, ought to be directed to God’s work in the world.”
Bp Pickard stressed that this report marked only the first stage of the commission’s work. “It’s a work in progress, we’re looking for input and feedback from wide consultation,” he said. “The next stage will feed off those comments and suggestions.
“It’s a two-stage process. The overall purpose is to explore the effectiveness of Instruments of Communion and ask how we may enhance deeper harmony among the Instruments. How do they work together? How might they be creatively part of the process of evolution of the Anglican Communion?”
The reflection about the Instruments continues tomorrow. Much of the feedback on the work of IASCUFO is due to be heard in plenary on Tuesday.
For more information the media should contact Mr Jan Butter on +64 (0)2102991797 (international media) or the Revd Jayson Rhodes 021661319 (New Zealand media)
Notes to Editors
1. The 15th Anglican Consultative Council (ACC-15) is meeting in Auckland, New Zealand between 27 October and 7 November. This is an advisory body comprising lay and ordained delegates from all Provinces that consider the present and future life and work of the Anglican Communion.
2. The Anglican Communion Office serves the Anglican Communion, comprising around 85 million members in 38 regional and national member churches around the globe in more than 165 countries. http://www.anglicancommunion.org/
3. For all the latest news, features, podcasts, videos, tweets and Facebook posts from the conference please visit http://www.aco.org/communion/acc/