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I’ve been reading an interesting article by Paul Avis, “Lambeth 2020: Conference or Council?” Theology 122.1 (2019): 1-13.
Concerning what type of councils is the Lambeth Conference as a decision making body, Avis concludes:
Councils - Affairs - Decisions - Effect - Consensus
If most early councils were largely pragmatic affairs whose decisions lacked executive effect; if they typically searched for consensus rather than always taking divisive majority decisions; if large numbers of bishops absented themselves, even from ‘ecumenical’ councils; if they gave rise to bitter controversy; if Vatican II was a pastoral council that issued no decrees and pronounced no anathemas, but devoted itself to expounding and applying the faith of the Church; and if the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church in 2016 similarly issued no canons and pronounced no anathemas and was depleted by mass absences and found its authority challenged by four Autocephalous Churches and a host of critics – if, in other words,...
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