article in the Weekly Standard about the apparent looming resignation of the current Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. It appears his position has become untenable in the delicate and difficult balancing act between the overt and defying actions of the American hierarchy over gay and lesbian marriage and clergy and the conservative and more vibrant Anglican church life in Africa (among other places).
The story here is that there is no story -- nothing we would notice. Perhaps that is symptomatic of a world awash in other urgent problems and issues or perhaps it is testament to the growing marginalism of the Anglican Communion (at least the form in England, Canada, and America). Either way, it is a sad story. Williams is not such a bad man -- a literary figure and poet of some renown. But who can stand in the right place where the tensions between Protestantism and anglo-catholicism, social liberalism and traditional morality, defiance and tradition? Perhaps this is a job for no one -- except a figure head who can look good in a mozetta, rochet, crozier, and miter. It might help if one could avoid the embarrassments of friendliness toward sharia law. It might help if he had a few tricks up his sleeve or there won't be anyone left to marry the heirs to the throne and perform the important civic functions the Archbishop of Canterbury must fulfill.
It is a sad story for a church once closely connected to Lutheranism and one that returned the favor by helping us translate liturgical texts into English, one with whom we share a great body of hymnody, and one whose history was marked by missionary endeavor and theological seriousness -- at least until more recent times. Now it appears left to the Africans to give doctrinal weight and substance to the liturgical tradition that has identified Anglicanism. Perhaps they can pull it off. One can only look with sadness on what the Western homes of Anglicanism have become and pray that someone can pull this church body from the abyss of contemporary social justice parading as faith and a morality in which there are no wrongs except intolerance.