Canterbury flip-flop?

Rowan Williams, the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, though theologically orthodox was expected to be a more socially liberal successor to Archbishop George Carey, an evangelical. Williams famously wrote a paper years ago in support of non-celibate homosexual clergy, much to the chagrin of moderates and conservatives. However, honored Archbishop seems to have changed his tune, recently saying that homosexuals must "change their behaviour" to fully participate in the church's life, much to the chagrin of liberals and "revisionists."

Now, I've always had a sort of admiration for Rowan Williams (even when I thought he was a liberal) not least because I know him to be vastly more intelligent than I and also he looks like a wizard. Naturally, I am glad to see that his theological position turns out to be even closer to my own than I suspected. Even so, one has to wonder if political realities resulting from the current crisis within the Anglican communion have influenced him to make this sort of pronouncement or if he would have come to this position on his own suggesting that the current crisis may simply have hastened the change by focusing his attention on these issues.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Though I have never met Rowan Williams, his writings seem to suggest that he is an extremely intellegent person who is very thoughtful. I figure he more than anyone weighs his words very very carefully

3:21 PM, September 27, 2006  
Blogger johnnie raines said...

hi, i stumbled onto your site.

i read an interview in which he was questioned on this issue, and he responded that his essay was more along the line of contributing to dialogue than a presentation of an opinion. i supose i can sort of see where he's coming from on that.

also, his essay didn't seem to me to affirm celibate homosexuality as much as it was a discussion of the necessity of some sort of "natural law" theology in order to arrive at the conclusion that homosexuality is wrong.

i'm right there with you on being a rowan williams fan... especially because he looks like a wizard. i also liked seeing that n.t. wright link up there.


12:05 AM, September 29, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone can get your respect and admiration if they look like a wizard? I'm sitting in class right now, and when I read that comment I busted out laughing, getting looks from a few people around me. --bethany

9:57 AM, October 03, 2006  
Blogger Jason Woolever said...

bethany, that's cool that you're reading blogs during class.
RW looks a little weird if you ask me. I can't respect him on the wizard thing alone. His nose is stubby and not long an pointy as I had hoped.

4:09 PM, October 03, 2006  
Blogger St.Phransus said...

i'm kind of wishing that we had a bishop in the umc. i can't think of anyone who fits that description. i, like stephen think that Rowan Williams must take his words very seriously. I imagine that even if he were to lean on the liberal side when it comes to the issue of homosexuality, as the archbishop- orthodoxy and holding traditionn and reasonn in tension must be weighed heavily and not pushed too terribly hard. Even though I would like to see an even more generous archbishop when it comes to this issue, I have all the respect for him.

Thanks for the post.

8:45 PM, October 13, 2006  

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