Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Are We Listening?

The Anglican Communion Office (ACO) today released a report on the "listening process" that has been mandated since the 1978 Lambeth Conference of Anglican bishops, urging that all provinces within the Anglican Communion consider deeply the issue of homosexuality.

The Anglican Communion Office offers this background:
The 1978 Lambeth Conference recognised “the need for deep and dispassionate study of the question of homosexuality, which would take seriously both the teaching of Scripture and the results of scientific and medical research.” It also said that “While we reaffirm heterosexuality as the scriptural norm, we recognise The Church, recognising the need for pastoral concern for those who are homosexual, encourages dialogue with them.”
The statement goes on to note that the Anglican bishops meeting at Lambeth in 1988 and 1998 reiterated and expanded this call for a "listening process."

The ACO was called to monitor the results of this "listening process" by ACC 13 and commended by the Primates in their communiqué of their meeting in February 2005. Background information and a summary of responses to the "listening process" are reported on the ACO website. Then click here for detailed responses from the Anglican provinces.

In addition to the summaries, and the materials being formulated on the Anglican Communion website, a study guide, "The Process of Listening to Gay and Lesbian People and Mutual Listening on Human Sexuality," is underway for use at the Lambeth Conference 2008. The facilitator requests contributions for the study guide, full details of which are on the website.The Study Guide is available here.

Episcopal News Service also carries this story. Click here to read it.

Update 03.28.07: The Anglican Centrist offers thoughtful comments to the report here.

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