Welby Skips GAFCON II

Saving the travel budget?

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will not be attending the GAFCON II Conference in Nairobi this month, a spokesman tells Anglican Ink, due to a schedule conflict.

A spokesman from the Lambeth Press Office said the Archbishop had been invited to address the 21-26 October 2013 meeting of centrist and conservative Anglican leaders set for All Saints’ Cathedral in Nairobi. However, he “is unable to attend because of a long-standing commitment on the same date. He will be sending a pre-recorded video greeting,” the spokesman said.

Although many Anglicans lament this, I think that GAFCON and its allies should breathe a collective sigh of relief.  His usual habit at conferences with this makeup of idea is to lecture them on their “intolerance”, and I think that the conference attendees have to endure enough people looking down their nose at them not to have to endure one more.  Personally I wouldn’t even play the video greeting if I were GAFCON.

The reality now is that there are two “Anglican Communions” with two different ideas.  The “bonds of affection” are pretty much a thing of the past.  Hopes (especially in North America) of a rightward shift in Canterbury were unrealistic to start with (their own experience should have taught them that) and that should be clear to everyone now.

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