Archbishop Nutter reported that the Primate wrote to the Archbishop of Canterbury, as requested at the November meeting of the House, and received a response to his letter from Canon S. Van Culin's response were distributed to the Bishops.
According to the formula outlined by Canon Van Culin, as developed at the March 1986 meeting of Primates, the Canadian Church is entitled to send three Suffragan Bishops. No provision is being made for the attendance of the wives of Suffragan Bishops at the Lambeth Conference.
The Metropolitans identified various methods of indicating the Suffragan Bishops who should be invited to attend from the Canadian Church. It was agreed that seniority should be the defining factor, but that no more than one Bishop should attend from the same Diocese. If any Suffragan is unable to go because of illness, or chooses not to go, the next senior Suffragan Bishop should take his place. The Metropolitans agreed that this proposal should be placed before the Bishops for their consideration.
That the three Suffragan Bishops senior by Consecration be those designated to attend the Lambeth Conference in 1988, and that if any of those thus indicated are unable to attend, the next senior Suffragan Bishop shall take his place, with not more than one attending from any diocese. CARRIED
The Primate indicated the hope that it will be possible for the Bishops' wives to accompany their husbands to England at the time of the Lambeth Conference and requested suggestions re wives' participation in the Conference.
The Primate described the role of Suffragan Bishops in England. He said that, in some instances, Suffragans are territorial Bishops who are active in Diocesan activities and meet as a College of Bishops, while in other situations, they work under the Diocesan's authority. The Primate said that Australia shares the same tradition, while in Africa that pattern has been to create more dioceses.
The Primate said that there is a desire to have more representation from India at the 1988 Lambeth Conference.
We recognize that the numbers and the duties and functions of Suffragan Bishops vary widely in different Provinces of the Anglican Communion.
However, in the Anglican Church of Canada, Suffragan Bishops are very few in number, and share fully in every aspect of episcopal and synodical ministry.
Therefore, the National House of Bishops requests that our Canadian Suffragan Bishops be invited to full and equal participation in the 1988 Lambeth Conference, without prejudice to other decisions about the attendance of Suffragans which may be made with regard to other Anglican Provinces. CARRIED #9-9-85