Once they have overcome their bemusement at this book's title, Anglicans should find its content fascinating. Like our own Lambeth Quadrilateral, the Methodist version seeks to advance a clear understanding of their tradition's theological foundation. The choice of nomeclature apparently is incidental, for the circumstances and content of the Wesleyan version's rise differ in important respects from our own, and no reference is made to the Anglican alternative. But given Methodism's roots in Anglican tradition, and broader contemporary interest in elucidating and affirming basic components of Christian tradition, this volume holds considerable interest for Anglicans.
Where this volume makes an important contribution to Methodist as well as Anglican discussions is on this very point. The attempt to articulate a coherent sense of tradition concerns more than doctrinal consistency and purity. Tradition and experience stand in complex relation, not only historically but in present debates. It would be too much to say that this book makes a definitive statement. But it broaches a topic that should be addressed far more than it is. Anglicans may not follow their religious offspring in seeking a theological basis for the role and authority of the "conference." But we would do well to seek a more defined conciliar means to address our sense of how tradition and experience now intersect.
--William L. Sachs
Anglican and Episcopal History
September 2000 Issue