The Telegraph, in the UK, has published a list of who they believe to be the 50 most influential figures in the Anglican Communion. Starting at #50 with The Rev. Dr. Ephraim Radner, an Anglican Communion Insitute fellow and professor of historical theology at Wycliffe College in Toronto, to #1, who else, the Archbishop of Canterbury himself, Dr. Rowan Williams, the list includes a wide variety of Anglicans from every theological stripe.
Of course there are many who would question persons and their ranking in this list, or who got left out--such as the lack of former heavy hitters across the theological gamut, like John Stott or Louie Crew. My personal favorites are the comments section that we all must endure in these uber-interactive days, where individuals lash out because Jesus isn't on the list (bad, bad Christology, but who said we Anglicans are theologians anyway), or they mention someone local that no one fifty miles away from there has heard of.
But the real bombshell in this poll comes in the Top Ten. The Telegraph, no friend of theological conservatives, testifies itself to the giant rift that liberal Anglicans in North America claim is only the schism of a few, when half of those listed in the Telegraph Top Ten attended GAFCON (#9 +Nazir-Ali, #8 +Jensen, #7 +Venables, #5 +Orombi, #3 +Akinola). 5 of the top 10 most influential Anglicans attended the conference designed to provide theological conservatives a viable place in Anglican Christianity.
For those who say that the GAFCON group is leaving Anglicanism, this poll demonstrates that the GAFCON adherents are not just a splinter group. For those who say that the GAFCON group is destroying Anglicanism, it is instead the actions of the "inclusive" "progressives" doing just that, shown once again in the recent CofE decision to consecrate women as bishops without providing safeguards for a significant minority in the church that does not believe women can be bishops. The other members of the Top Ten include radical liberals like +Jefferts-Schori and +Robinson, demonstrating that the most influential are by and large the most disparate in their views of Jesus, the Scriptures and the Church. No wonder we're in such a mess.
You know what Jesus said about a house divided against itself...