The Archbishop of Canterbury responds

Earlier in the week we had coverage of the release of letters written by the Archbishop of Canterbury about his private views on the question of the sanctity of same-sex unions.

This statement appeared on the Archbishop’s website:

“In response to the recent coverage of the correspondence dated back to 2000, The Archbishop Canterbury has made the following statement:

In the light of recent reports based on private correspondence from eight years ago, I wish to make it plain that, as I have consistently said, I accept Resolution I.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference as stating the position of the worldwide Anglican Communion on issues of sexual ethics and thus as providing the authoritative basis on which I as Archbishop speak on such questions.

That Resolution also recognises the need for continuing study and discussion on the matter.  In the past, as a professional theologian, I have made some contributions to such study.  But obviously, no individual’s speculations about this have any authority of themselves.  Our Anglican Church has never exercised close control over what individual theologians may say.  However, like any church, it has the right to declare what may be said in its name as official doctrine and to define the limits of legitimate practice.   As Archbishop I understand my responsibility to be to the declared teaching of the church I serve, and thus to discourage any developments that might imply that the position and convictions of the worldwide Communion have changed.”

Read the full article here.

Also linked at the article is the letter that 19 bishops of the Church of England published responding to charges that the Archbishop was being less than forthcoming in leading the Communion and holding to one position when his private views were at variance.

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