I’ve been following the proceedings of the Anglican Consultative Council, currently meeting in Nottingham (many thanks to titusonenine and thinking anglicans). I’ve read the ECUSA justification of their position, which seemed clear, and the various responses to it. Yet it still seems to me that the most fundamental question keeps being overlooked.
In this question as to whether consecration of a non-celibate homosexual is permissible or not, there seems to be a prior question about whether it is possible for such an amendment to the tradition to be driven by the Holy Spirit. It seems perfectly possible to be opposed to ECUSA on two separate, and profoundly different, grounds: 1. That such a change is possible and in line with how the Holy Spirit might lead us, but that the case in this instance has not been made, and in fact such a change is not consonant with the love of Christ; or, 2. such a change is not possible, and therefore any exploration or consideration of this issue is pointless.
In other words, the underlying question, which keeps getting submerged, is hermeneutical, about the role of Scripture within the household of the faithful. One position sees Scripture as inherently malleable, and not separable from a community of interpretation. The other sees Scripture as fixed, and the role for the community is simply to be obedient.
It seems to me that there is scope for the friendship which ++Rowan called for between ECUSA and those who believe 1., but not between ECUSA and those who believe 2.
For what it’s worth, option 2 seems to me to be profoundly unAnglican, even unChristian, in so far as I understand the faith. “I have many things to say to you which you cannot yet bear… the Spirit will lead you into all truth.”