Bishops from the US Episcopal Church have agreed to maintain a moratorium on the ordination of gay clergy, raising hopes among Anglicans that their worldwide communion can avoid a devastating split. The agreement came at a six-day crisis meeting of US bishops in New Orleans, the early stages of which was attended by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
However, the Guardian's religion correspondent Stephen Bates reports that the decision may not be enough to prevent a split. The Bishops have only agreed to continue a moratorium and this does not amount to a permanent commitment. Conservative Anglicans, particularly from African churches, have been calling for the 2.2 million strong US church to be expelled from the communion, and traditionalists in the US are already making plans to set up their own church.