Episcopal Church lines up principles debate

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THE General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church opens in Edinburgh tomorrow, with the future of the worldwide Anglican communion on the agenda.

The annual three-day gathering, presided over by the Primus, the Most Rev David Chillingworth, will be asked to vote on whether to back the controversial Anglican Covenant, a set of principles drawn up after the rows over gay priests.

Liberal critics say the proposed dispute resolution procedure amounts to an instrument of control, while many conservatives argue it does not go far enough in bringing churches into line. A majority of dioceses in the Church of England have already rejected the Covenant, but on Friday the synod will debate a motion that it agrees in principle to adopt it.

Bishop Chillingworth said: “General Synod 2012 is the point at which the Scottish Episcopal Church decides whether or not it is ready to adopt the Anglican Covenant.”