Bobby Kennedy Interviews Canon Gregg Riley Regarding GAFCON

Read it all.

A snippit:

We have a mutual problem, or crisis. One of the Brits made the analogy that this is like a virus that hit his computer. It began in the U. S. A. and Canada, but it has spread throughout the Anglican Communion. The people in New Zealand are just as concerned about this crisis as we are in America. Like wise, so are the Brits and Ugandans. I think the unique aspect of GAFCON is having this multi-national gathering, or global conference, to deal with the future of the Anglican Communion, by focusing on this one issue we all have in common. This may have started here in America and Canada, but, it has spread throughout the Anglican Communion and affected everyone. Perhaps infected may be a better term.


BJK: Do you have any reservations or concerns about the outcome of GAFCON, particularly concerning the statement that was issued by the assembly?

GR+: Personally, I do not. I mean, as I said, coming from the Anglo-Catholic wing, and speaking to Bishop Ackerman and Bishop Iker personally, they seemed to be pleased with the outcome. Some SSC brothers who were there said, in essence, we got more than we thought we would get. I don’t know how much more we could have gotten out of GAFCON. A majority of the Communion recognizes the chasm between the orthodox and the revisionists in TEC is so wide it cannot be breached. The split has occurred, and the only alternative is a new Anglican Province. GAFCON gave us that, and to me that was the biggest prize. The new province is not a “what if” but it “is.” I don’t know what more we could have gotten.


BJK: What is the next step for the Diocese of Western Louisiana and Grace Church?

GR+: Our Diocesan Convention meets in October and I sit on the executive council of the diocese. The Bishop has told me personally that after Lambeth, the executive council will meet in August. He will then give us his opinion concerning where things are and the options we have for the diocese. It is his desire that IF the diocese chooses to do something that we do it as a whole. I would also prefer that. Being realistic, whatever decision the diocese makes, if we decide to move as a diocese, there will be certain clergy, parishes, and laypeople who will want to remain in TEC. Likewise, if we don’t move as a diocese, there will be clergy, parishes, and lay people who don’t want to stay. That will be a reality after October. The bishop is wise enough, and intelligent enough, to know that is going to happen. No matter what happens at the convention in October, someone will not be happy. There is going to be movement, but the question is where.

7 Responses to “Bobby Kennedy Interviews Canon Gregg Riley Regarding GAFCON”

  1. 1 Aunt B July 13, 2008 at 9:21 pm

    Personally, I pray the diocese, as a whole, decides to move to the new Anglican Province. Should that be the case, however, I’m admittedly nervous as to the future of St. James. While I’m ever hopeful the parish will follow the diocese, real confidence in that remains elusive.

    Nevertheless, being on Resolutions, in October, should be interesting, indeed.

  2. 2 Canon Gregg L. Riley July 15, 2008 at 2:20 pm


    Thanks for the compliment – ditto on the “train wreck.”
    Don’t forget the coon… for the delegation at GC. We need to make our presence known.

    Canon G+

  3. 3 John in the Middle July 15, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    This interview suggests that one way or another our diocese will be splitting after October ’08 with some joining a new as yet unrecognized province.

    It sounds as though by next summer our GC09 delegation may look different. For those of us who will be remaining Episcopalian, do we know if our alternate delegates are likewise leaning toward departure?

  4. 4 Bobby J. Kennedy July 15, 2008 at 9:21 pm

    John in the Middle:

    Are you concerned whether some of the clergy deputies will likely be changed or lay or both?

  5. 5 John in the Middle July 15, 2008 at 9:57 pm

    It sounds like both. If the diocese votes to go this October, then a second convention would likely be called before GC09 to affirm that decision. At that point, I would think that those of us remaining Episcopal would quickly call a convention to reorganize.

    “Likewise, if we don’t move as a diocese, there will be clergy, parishes, and lay people who don’t want to stay. That will be a reality after October.”

    If I read the interview correctly, should the diocese vote not to disaffiliate then it’s likely there would be some delegates, lay and ordained, who would be leaving directly after October. I’m not as familiar with our alternates, and I wonder if we would be represented fully at GC09 should members of our delegation depart for the Anglican province. If the delegation departed, would we be able to call a special convention to elect new delegates to GC09?

  6. 6 Bobby J. Kennedy July 15, 2008 at 10:37 pm

    John in the Middle:

    Interesting points. Everything seems reasonable, as you put it. I don’t know anything about the alternate delegates.

    BTW, your blog name, as I took it, seems to point to neturality or undecicdedness, “in the middle.” What was the deciding factor for you that makes you want to stay in TEC? Just curious. Thanks!

  7. 7 John in the Middle July 16, 2008 at 5:07 pm


    I don’t remember a time when I didn’t love God and love the Episcopal Church. I’m “in the middle” because I’m a cradle Episcopalian of five decades now so I have friends and family on all sides of the issue.

    I’ll stay in TEC along with my family, and closest friends and members of the clergy. I’ve worked in a number of churches of other denominations, even at the national level, and I don’t see that separation is an answer for any problem.

    For me, one possible good outcome though might be reunion with the Diocese of Louisiana and a closer relationship with my friends there from the days before the diocese split just over a quarter century ago.

    Otherwise, I suppose that if the Diocese of Western La departs next year, we will call a convention soon thereafter and reorganize.

    Thanks for publishing that interview btw.

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