It’s about a hundred degrees and getting hotter in the Big Top at Lambeth but the £1 million black hole in the budget at the Lambeth Conference means they can’t afford air conditioning. Expect fainting bishops to be ferried out by ambulances any moment now, if they don’t start shooting each other first. The press conference this morning was a farce. Excommunications officers declined to comment on who is here for reasons of ‘security’ but declined to say what the ‘security’ issues were. Apparently there are some Nigerian bishops at the conference but we are not allowed to know who they are. Even the totally harmless and innocuous Church Press here are being denied access to the evening Eucharists.
The conference is falling apart and it is only day two of official business. The Sudanese bishops, who were, astonishingly, stationed as Salisbury with the US Presiding Bishop and her team before the conference, have almost derailed the whole thing by virtually calling for Gene Robinson’s resignation.
As I write this the Archbishop of Sudan Dr Daniel Deng Bul is sitting behind me in the press room, calling for Gene Robinson to resign. If God had wanted men to be with men, he said, ‘He would have created two Adams.’ He has just come from a meeting of the 150-plus Global South bishops at the Lambeth Conference, representing 17 provinces. And this has just come in from Bishop of Fort Worth Jack Iker: ‘Those Bishops who stand in solidarity with Gene Robinson should withdraw themselves from further participation in the Lambeth Conference. Having failed in several attempts to include Gene in the Conference, his supporters should themselves feel a sense of rejection from the Conference itself. Integrity and honesty would dictate that they should stand with Gene – excluded from full participation in the Lambeth Conference. Is this all talk, or is it backed up by action?’ This represents the hard-line conservative-traditionalist stance at the Lambeth Conference and it is widespread. I wish I wasn’t writing this but things here are really not looking good. The Anglican Communion seems to be falling apart in front of our eyes and it is not a pretty sight.