My new Reform Newsletter arrived this week. It has a helpful section on the launch of AMiE written by the Reform Chairman, Rev Rod Thomas. Here’s the text. You can find it here.
A major step forward has been taken in the development of a society. This is now being called the Anglican Mission in England (AMiE) and it was publicly announced at the Evangelical Ministry Assembly on Thursday 23rd June. The purpose of the Mission at the moment is to provide some immediate recognition and oversight for churches that cannot or do not currently receive the oversight of Church of England bishops. It will operate with episcopal oversight from Michael Nazir-Ali, John Ball, Colin Bazley, Wallace Benn and John Ellison. The new Mission has the warm support of the Archbishop of Kenya who is currently the chairman of the FCA Primates. He ordained the first English presbyters for mission in the wider church on Saturday 11th June and their episcopal oversight has been delegated to the AMiE bishops.
There is still much work to be done on exactly how AMiE will operate in future – and in particular on how its bishops will in future be selected and the role they will perform. One possibility is that they will look to local deans of mission to engage with individual congregations. Different levels of church and individual membership also need to be detailed; some members will need the oversight of the AMiE bishops, but others may not – at least for the time being. Their membership will be a matter of fellowship rather than oversight. The Reform trustees have undertaken to do more work on this – both to help AMiE and to demonstrate what the CoE should itself be doing. The formation of the AMiE is the first major practical step the FCA has taken in this country to help churches which are in impaired or non-existent communion with C of E bishops and it puts the emphasis positively on mission rather than division. On behalf of Reform, I have therefore warmly welcomed it and expressed gratitude for the support that it has been given by the Archbishop of Kenya.