The Lambeth Commission - Reception

Windsor Report Reception Process

The work of the Lambeth Commission on Communion was commissioned by the Archbishop of Canterbury in October 2003, following the special meeting of the Primates and Moderators of the Anglican Communion at Lambeth Palace in that month.

The official process of reception for the Windsor Report 2004 therefore began in February 2005 during the regular meeting of the Primates and Moderators which was held in February 20th - 26th in Northern Ireland.

In order to prepare for this meeting, the Archbishop of Canterbury, in conjunction with the Primates' Standing Committee, appointed a Reception Reference Group (RRG), under the chairmanship of the Most Revd Peter Kwong, then Primate of Hong Kong, to assist the Primates by monitoring the way in which the Windsor Report had been received across the Anglican Communion and by our ecumenical partners. In a letter to the Provinces, Archbishop Peter wrote, "My hope is really to be able to gain some sense of where Anglicans, Episcopalians and members of the United Churches stand on the issues raised in the Report, and the recommendations made...This is a formidable challenge but I feel it is vital that the Primates are able to have the widest and best possible information for their meeting next February."

The members of the Reception Reference Group were:

  • Archbishop Peter Kwong, Primate, Hong Kong, Chair
  • Archdeacon Jim Boyles, Provincial Secretary, Canada
  • Bishop John Gladstone, Bishop of South Kerala, South India
  • Dr Ishmael Noko, General Secretary, Lutheran World Federation
  • Bishop Kenneth Price, Suffragan Bishop of Southern Ohio, USA
  • Bishop James Tengatenga, Bishop of Southern Malawi
  • Bishop Tito Zavala, Bishop of Chile

Staff Consultants were:

  • Canon Gregory Cameron, ACO, Secretary
  • Canon John Rees, ACC, Legal Adviser
  • Revd Sarah Rowland Jones, CPSA

Responses to the Windsor Report

Several questions were developed for consideration by groups around the Communion as they considered the Windsor Report.

The questions posed by the Primates' Standing Committee to the Provinces of the Anglican Communion were:

  1. What in the description of the life of the Communion in Sections A & B can you recognise as consistent, or not, with your understanding of the Anglican Communion?
  2. In which ways do the proposals in Section C & D flow appropriately from the description of the Communion's life in Sections A & B?
  3. What do you think are the ways in which the recommendations and proposals of the Report would impact on the life of the Communion if they were to be implemented?
  4. How would you evaluate the arguments for an Anglican Covenant set out in paragraph 119 of the Report? How far do the elements included in the possible draft for such a covenant in Appendix Two of the Report represent an appropriate development of the existing life of the Anglican Communion?

The questions offered to our ecumenical partners by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion were:

  1. What do you find helpful in the Windsor Report 2004?
  2. What questions does the report raise from the perspective of your church?
  3. If the recommendations of the Windsor Report were implemented, how would this affect your church's relationship with the Anglican Communion as an ecumenical partner?

Some more general questions of a non-specialised kind were also formulated for consideration by those who didn't have a knowledge of the Windsor Report:

  1. How can the 44 churches of the Anglican Communion be helped to stay together?
  2. How should a Christian behave when another Christian does something which they believe is deeply offensive to the Gospel?
  3. Would you like to see Anglican/Episcopal churches moving closer together or going their separate ways?

A total of 322 responses were received. These were of varying size: some in the form of short, one-paragraph emails; others, two or twenty pages of thought-out views; others in book form representing a more in-depth analysis of the Windsor Report.


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