Anglicans told to stop homosexual consecrations, blessings

|PIC1|A group of senior Anglican clergy presented a document at the Lambeth Conference on Monday demanding a halt to the consecration of partnered homosexual bishops, blessings for same-sex unions and cross-border interventions.

The document warned that if the three moratoria were not observed, the Anglican Communion was "likely to fracture".

"The patters of action currently embraced with the continued blessings of same-sex unions and of interventions could lead to irreparable damage," it added.

The Most Rev Clive Handford, chair of the Windsor Continuation Group which drew up the document, told reporters on Monday that the moratorium would be "retrospective" but later clarified that this did not imply the resignation of openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson.

"We're not asking that he be defrocked. We're just saying that there should not be any more [consecrations]. We're aware that he was elected according to the policies of the Episcopal Church, whatever we may think about that."

The document further recommended the "swift" formation of a 'Pastoral Forum' to oversee breakaway parishes and dioceses, in a bid to stop conservative congregations from seeking alternative oversight from foreign primates.

The Pastoral Forum would, the document said, act as as a "holding bay" for such parishes and "a key mechanism to achieve reconciliation".

The document's authors also stated that the forum should have the powers to respond quickly to conflict.

"We believe that the Pastoral Forum should be empowered to act in the Anglican Communion in a rapid manner to emerging threats to its life," they noted.

The document was handed out to hundreds of bishops at the Conference, due to conclude this Sunday in Canterbury.