The Inter Anglican Standing Commission on Ecumenical Relations
Communiqué - Monastery of Bose, Italy 30 November - 6 December 2002
The Inter Anglican Standing Commission on Ecumenical Relations (IASCER) met in the Communità monastica di Bose near Turin, Italy, from 30 November to 6 December, 2002, at the invitation of the Rt Revd Geoffrey Rowell, Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe. Archbishop Drexel Wellington Gomez, Primate of the Church in the Province of the West Indies, was in the chair.
IASCER continued its programme of reviewing and discussing all the present international ecumenical dialogues involving Anglicans, and received information on several provincial and regional initiatives towards unity with other Christians.
A major part of the Commission’s work at this meeting was to consider Anglican – Lutheran relations which have been developing rapidly in different parts of the world.
The Commission studied Growth in Communion, the report of the Anglican – Lutheran International Working Group, that reviews the progress made in Africa, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Europe, USA, and other regions, and makes recommendations for future action. The Report was received positively and with enthusiasm, but there were a number of points within it that the Commission wished to have clarified or set in a wider context in order to respect the consistency and coherence of the Anglican Communion’s dialogues with other ecumenical partners. The Commission welcomed the decision of the Anglican Consultative Council to support the proposal to establish a new Anglican – Lutheran International Commission.
The new Commission for dialogue with the Oriental Orthodox Churches, building on the work of other dialogues and the work of the earlier Anglican – Oriental Orthodox Forum, reached an historic Agreed Statement on Christology at its first full meeting in November, 2002. IASCER studied this agreement and supported plans to turn attention next in this dialogue to the Holy Spirit and the work of the Spirit in the Church.
Relations with the Roman Catholic Church internationally embrace both the on-going theological dialogue in the Anglican – Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC) and the newer International Anglican – Roman Catholic Commission for Unity and Mission (IARCCUM). ARCIC will shortly complete a new Agreed Statement on the place of Mary in the life and faith of the Church. IARCCUM is preparing a concise summary of the extensive agreement in faith now reached between the Roman Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion, and will oversee the process of study and reception of agreement between the communions, as well as promoting practical outcomes from the spiritual communion that already exists.
The Commission attempts to do its work with an awareness of the studies of the Inter Anglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission (IATDC). IASCER is assisted from time to time by the work of the International Anglican Liturgical Consultation IALC).
The Commission enjoyed the physical beauty and the warmth of the welcome at the Monastery of Bose, where it was possible to share in and be supported by the Community’s life of prayer and worship. The community of almost eighty men and women is young and dynamic and has a special charism of ecumenism. The Commission made a short excursion to Turin and visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation and had dinner with the priests there.
The Commission consists of members representing each international dialogue involving Anglicans, including the multilateral dialogue of Faith and Order, along with consultants who bring particular regional or theological expertise and members of IATDC & LARC. Present at Bose were: the Revd Prebendary Dr Paul Avis, the Revd Canon Alyson Barnett-Cowan, the Rt Revd John Baycroft (secretary), the Revd Dr William Crockett, the Rt Revd Christopher Epting, the Most Revd Drexel W Gomez (Chair), the Rt Revd John Hind, the Rt Revd Dr John W. Gladstone, the Revd Jane Namugenyi, the Rt Revd Dr Geoffrey Rowell, The Revd Dr Charles Sherlock, the Revd Canon J Robert Wright, and The Revd Karackattil George Pothen of the Mar Thoma Church, Mrs Christine Codner of the Anglican Communion Office and Miss Elizabeth Hughes of Lambeth Palace served as administrative assistants to the meeting.
The next plenary of IASCER is scheduled for 29 November – 5 December 2003 in the United States.
For further information contact
Bishop John Baycroft
Anglican Communion Office, London
Fax: +44 (0)20 7620 1070
Tel.: +44 (0)20 7620 1110