My friend Jim Naughton has written a very helpful back ground piece for those who are wondering what all the fuss is about this week in New Orleans where the Episcopal House of Bishops will be meeting with the Archbishop of Canterbury:
“In February, the Primates of the Anglican Communion released a set of ‘recommendations’ to the Episcopal Church; warned that if the Church did not comply there would be ‘consequences for the full participation of the Church in the life of the Communion,’ and set September 30 as the deadline for the Church’s response.
On Thursday, just 10 days before the deadline, Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury and members of the Joint Standing Committee of the Primates’ Meeting and the Anglican Consultative Council, begin two days of meetings in New Orleans with the Episcopal Church’s House of Bishops to determine what sort of response is forthcoming. But much of the drama that one will no doubt find the press drumming up this week has already been drained from the situation.
In inviting the bishops of the Episcopal Church (with the significant exception of Gene Robinson of New Hampshire) to the Lambeth Conference next summer, the Archbishop has already signaled that he is not eager to exclude the Episcopal Church from ‘full participation’ in the various quasi-governmental bodies that help hold the Communion together. And in jumping the deadline and ordaining bishops to work in the United States, primates such as Peter Akinola of Nigeria, Henry Orombi of Uganda and Benjamin Nzimbi of Kenya have already played their most potent card to much fanfare, but uncertain—and quite possibly minimal—effect.
But if September 30 deadline has lost much of its dramatic luster, the meeting in New Orleans may nonetheless yield significant results.”
There’s much more and links to a number of important background articles over on Episcopal Cafe. Do read it, and if you know other people looking for a similar “quick-start-guide” point them there as well.
Read the rest here: Daily Episcopalian