The worldwide Anglican Church has its panties in such a bunch over the issues stemming from the consecration of openly gay bishop Gene Robinson they may be willing to sacrifice the unity of the entire denomination once and for all.
The Episcopal Church (the Anglican Church’s U.S. branch) may be assigned “associate” membership in the Anglican Church while the more Orthodox branches will be offered “constituent” membership. All churches will then be offered to sign a “covenant” on which all churches can agree, the terms of which are not likely to be suitable to the Episcopal Church.
The only choice for the Episcopals at that point is to “cut ties altogether” or remain as “associates” within the larger Anglican body.
A year ago, the Episcopalians defended their position on Robinson and gays in a 130-page document they shared with the Anglicans: “Our actions around the question of homosexuality have deeply distressed a number of you…(We) recognize that the Episcopal Church has not reached a common mind on the matter of homosexuality. [However], the overwhelming majority of Episcopalians are committed to living a life of unity in difference…Members of the Episcopal Church have discerned holiness in same-sex relationships and have come to support the blessing of such unions and the ordination or consecration of persons in those unions. We believe that God has been opening our eyes to acts of God that we had not known how to see before.”
The Anglicans, obviously, didn’t see eye-to-eye.
Worldwide Anglican Church to Split Over Gay Bishop [times online]