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Auckland diocese opposes Covenant

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The Anglican Diocese of Auckland meeting in their diocesan synod, yesterday passed the following motion:

That this Synod,

•  noting that the General Synod/te Hinota Whanui has approved in principle Sections 1-3 of the proposed Anglican Covenant, and asked Episcopal Units to respond to its 2012 Session, resolves as follows:

(a)    Sections 1 & 2 of the proposed Anglican Covenant may be considered to be a useful starting point for consideration of our Anglican understanding of the Church

(b)   Section 3 of the proposed Covenant contains an acceptable description of the basis for relationships between the churches of the Anglican Communion, and suggests a series of commitments which provide a useful framework within which churches of the Communion could discuss differences between them.

(c)    Clause 4.2 of the proposed Covenant contains provisions which are contrary to our understanding of Anglican ecclesiology, to our understanding of the way of Christ, and to justice, and is unacceptable to this Synod.

(d)   The other parts of Section 4 contain technical provisions that are acceptable to this diocese if Clause 4.2 is rejected.

• Notes that some other Episcopal Units have rejected the proposed Covenant, and anticipates that a variety of views on the proposed Covenant will be expressed by the various Episcopal Units.
• Asks General Synod/te Hinota Whanui, if it rejects the proposed Covenant in part or as a whole, to commit itself by Standing Resolution to following processes similar to those set out in Section 3 of the proposed Covenant if another church of the Communion raises concerns about actions this Church takes or considers taking.
• Asks General Synod/te Hinota Whanui to request its representatives to the Anglican Consultative Council to bring a motion to the 2012 meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council to affirm that full membership of the Anglican Communion is not conditional on adoption of the proposed Covenant.


Our own diocesan synod (Christchurch diocese), also meeting this weekend, will not be discussing the Anglican Covenant until March 2012. Our primary focus is response to our earthquakes and about eight thousand aftershocks. The presentations and discussions around our response were IMO very positive, thoughtful, and moving.

There will be discussion of the planned illegal Prayer Book printing. There is a motion about Ashes to Fire (a Lent and Easter resource) which may require its own blog post but, in essence, it appears that if it is passed, it will not be possible to use anything other than that.

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