The Inter-Anglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission (IATDC) has initiated a new round of consultation across the Anglican Communion on the relationship between the Anglican churches in preparation for its next meeting in Limuru, Kenya, in September 2006.
The chair of IATDC, the Rt. Rev. Prof. Stephen Sykes, principal of St. John's College in Durham, England, is writing to all bishops and theological education centers in the Anglican Communion to ask them to co-operate with the Commission's work by offering their answers to some of the key questions troubling the Anglican Communion. The text of the letter can be found at http://www.anglicancommunion.org/ecumenical/commissions/iatdc/iatdc_circular.cfm
IATDC was formed in 2001 to develop a theology of 'Communion' and especially to describe the nature of the Communion which exists between Anglican churches around the world. Its work has been suspended over the last two years in order to release funds for the work of the Lambeth Commission on Communion, which produced the Windsor Report in October 2004 in response to developments in North America concerning ministry in the context of same-gender relationships.
At its meeting in June 2005, the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) requested IATDC to resume its work, recognizing the need for further work on the wider theological framework of Anglican identity.
Sykes commented: "Although it is understandable, given the circumstances, why our theological work on 'Communion' was interrupted, we resume it with fresh energy and commitment, convinced that its exploration is vital to the mission of Anglican churches throughout the world."
The Commission began its work by adopting a methodology of active conversation with Anglican dioceses and centers of theological education throughout the world, identifying key issues
(Four Key Questions, www.aco.org/documents/iatdc/fourquestions.html) and debates
(Six Propositions, www.aco.org/ecumenical/commissions/iatdc/sixpropositions/index.html)
which underlie the more public and prominent differences challenging Anglican identity. The ACC also requested that IATDC should include responses to the Windsor Report in its thinking, as it reviews the way in which ideas of authority and subsidiarity have developed among Anglicans in recent decades.
It is hoped that the responses elicited by Sykes' letter will be collated in time for the meeting of the Commission in September. The Commission intends to produce a report for the Conference of Anglican Bishops, the Lambeth Conference, which will be held in Canterbury, England, in June 2008.
For further information, contact the Commission's secretary:
The Rev. Canon Gregory K. Cameron
Secretary to IATDC
Anglican Communion Office
St Andrew's House
16 Tavistock Crescent
London W11 1AP