It started and it ended. With something of a yawn. Church Times has a good round up of the business conducted.
I’m sure good work was done and some of the open (and private) letters are worthwhile. But in the end the whole thing is clouded by the failure (yet again) to seriously consider the tumult within the Communion. How can anything be said about anything when there is no single voice to speak with?
In this instance the commentary no longer focuses on the Americans (their position is immovable) but invariably makes reference to a perceived lack of leadership by the Abp. of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. There are articles such as All is not well in Rowanland, [update: also, A Descent into Irrelevance] and an article from San Joaquin Soundings which states:
“This Primates meeting was a tragic example of the small portion of the World Wide Anglican Communion willing to publicly call Rowan Williams their Archbishop… Instead of being the Archbishop of the WWAC Rowan Williams has marginalized himself to the extent that he has revealed himself to be foremost, a liberal agendist willing to allow the tail to wag the dog.”
I am unwilling to suggest a malicious intent. But to me empty chairs and candles for missing primates do seem a tad patronising. And the Archbishop could have nuanced himself better when quoted at Christian Today
Surely “those of us who are not here” rather than the implied “those of you who are not with us” would have been more conducive for his (vainly?) hoped for ongoing conversation.
So the meeting was ineffectual in anything substantive. But nobody thought it was going to be anything else.