Anglicans may boost power of Canterbury

Oct. 24, 2003 at 4:29 PM

LONDON, Oct. 24 (UPI) -- The head of the global Anglican Communion reportedly would gain sweeping powers under secret plans that could force U.S. Episcopalian churches into line.

The Times of London reported Friday the proposed changes in church law would give Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams the power to intervene in the affairs of churches outside England for the first time since the church was established by Henry VIII.

The proposal follows a global outcry over plans by the Episcopalian Church to elevate a practicing homosexual to bishop in New Hampshire.

The proposal has been presented to the 37 Anglican primates who met at Lambeth Palace last week to attempt to resolve the crisis over the election of a gay bishop in New Hampshire.

According to legal advice obtained from a senior canon lawyer by the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement, the proposal could mark the end of the present structure of the Anglican Communion.

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