|Williams tackles the complexity of modern reality and its fragmentation out of conflict and tragedy.|
From Schleiermacher's typology of poetic, rhetorical and descriptive, theology has these responsibilities:
Williams weaves between them:
Williams is not systematic; he is:
(1972) (ed.) Gemini Twin, Oxford: Gemini Press, 1974.
(1972) (ed.) The Gemini Poets, Cambridge: Gemini Press.
(1976) Pascal P. (R W translator from French), The Religion of the Russian People, London: Mowbrays.
(1979) The Wound of Knowledge: Christian Spirituality from the New Testament to St John of the Cross, London: Darton, Longman and Todd.
(1982) Eucharistic Sacrifice: the Roots of a Metaphor, Grove liturgical studies, no.31, Bramcote: Grove Books.
(1982) Resurrection: Interpreting the Easter Gospel, London: Darton, Longman & Todd.
(1983) The Truce of God, London: Collins, with Faith Press.
(1984) and Collier, M., Beginning Now: Pt.1; Peacemaking Theology: A Study Book for Individuals and Groups, London: Dunamis.
(1987) Arius: Heresy and Tradition, London: Darton, Longman & Todd.
(1988) with Beck, A., Hunt, R, (eds.), Speaking Love's Name: Homosexuality - Some Catholic and Socialist Reflections, London: Jubilee Group.
(1989) (ed.) The Making of Orthodoxy: Essays in Honour of Henry Chadwick, Cambridge University Press.
(1989) Christianity and the Ideal of Detachment (1988 Frank Lake Memorial Lecture), Lingdale Papers, No 12, Clinical Theology Association.
(1989) Violence, Society and the Sacred, Oxford Project for Peace Studies.
(1990) The Wound of Knowledge: Christian Spirituality from the New Testament to St John of the Cross, London: Darton, Longman and Todd.
(1994) After Silent Centuries, Oxford: Perpetua Press.
(1994) Mission and Christology, Church Missionary Society, Welsh Members Council.
(1994) Open to Judgement, London: Darton, Longman and Todd.
(1999) Bulgakov, S. (R W ed., R W introduces), Sergii Bulgakov: Towards a Russian Political Theology, Edinburgh: T&T Clark.
(2000) Christ On Trial: How the Gospel Unsettles our Judgement, London: Fount.
(2000) Lost Icons: Reflections on Cultural Bereavement, Edinburgh: T&T Clark.
(2000) On Christian Theology, Challenges in Contemporary Theology, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.
(2001) & Rowell G., Stevenson K. (compilers), Love's Redeeming Work: The Anglican Quest for Holiness, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
(2001) Arius: Heresy and Tradition, 2nd edition, London: SCM Press.
(2001) & et al, Darkness Yielding: Angles on Christmas, Holy Week, and Easter, Sheffield: Cairns.
(2002) & Aiken, N., Family Prayers, London: SPCK.
(2002) Ponder These Things: Praying with Icons of the Virgin, Norwich: Canterbury.
(2002) Resurrection: Interpreting the Easter Gospel, revised edition, London: Darton, Longman & Todd.
(2002) The Poems of Rowan Williams, Oxford: Perpetua Press.
(2002) Writing in the Dust: Reflections on 11th September and its Aftermath, London: Hodder & Stoughton.
(2003) Griffiths, A, (originally, English translation by R W on facing pages), Wele'n Sefyll rhwng y Myrtwydd, Y Drenewydd/ Newtown: Gwasg Gregynog.
(2003) Silence and Honey Cakes: The Wisdom of the Desert, Oxford: Lion.
(2003) Teresa of Avila, London: Continuum.
(2003) The Dwelling of the Light: Praying with Icons of Christ, Norwich: Canterbury Press.
(2004) Anglican Identities, London: Darton, Longman & Todd.
(2005) The Truce of God: Peacemaking in Troubled Times, revised and updated edition, Norwich: Canterbury.
(2005) Why Study the Past?: The Quest for the Historical Church, Sarum Theological Lectures, London: Darton, Longman & Todd.
As Archbishop of Canterbury he seems to have emphasised the Anglican Communion, which, due to its divisions, is impacting on parties in provinces all the more. His idea for a Covenant, which could exclude those who do not opt in, especially if some provinces want other provinces not to opt in, has the potential to formalise a split and potentially lead to other Covenants and splits between parishes. His approach, when the Nigerian Church takes a hard line in a country that could imprison gay men simply for meeting together, can be seen as morally neutral especially if the job is interpreted as trying to keep the Anglican Communion together whatever the ethical argument. It would be bizarre to exclude those who are inclusive towards minorities (to a different Covenant) and yet include those who would have them criminalised just for being who they are.
Williams has also emphasised real presence, which for some in its timing has sounded like a plea for closeness to Roman Catholicism, although it is likely to be his view. He recognises a distance from the Articles on this. Nevertheless Williams' approach appears to be heavily based on narrative, and one wonders what the detail adds up to in a wider sense.
He has moved quite a difference from some published views and his part in establishing Affirming Catholicism, which tries to replicate (but cannot) the old Broad Church approach for the whole Church of England. Much liberal theology has become more radical, and many evangelicals have become more strident: they identify Affirming Catholicism with other liberals. Williams cannot satisfy these evangelicals despite his lurch to the theological right, and has lost the support of many liberals. The division point is faced by open evangelicals, who explore evangelical theology, to either go with theological liberals or more conservative evangelicals (many of whom dismiss open evangelicals); open evangelicals might support Williams but for his Anglo-Catholicism (this group already split into liberals and sidelined traditionalists after the ordination of women in 1994). One wonders how Williams can return to his theological pursuits after the damage to him of the Archbishop post, which not only has limited his freedom to explore but has led to him stating views he did not state in his reasoned work.
Pluralist - Liberal and Thoughtful