4 Ispent last week in London, away from Jerusalem, attending the international board meeting and annual membership meeting of the Compass Rose Society. Compass Rose is an international mission organization, with concentrations of membership in Hong Kong and North America. Formed a little over 20 years ago by then-Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey and his Lambeth Palace staff, Compass Rose responds to needs in the global Anglican Communion by supporting the Archbishop of Canterbury’s ministry of relationship and connection. The Archbishop of Canterbury remains the patron of the Compass Rose, and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion is an ex officio board member. The Compass Rose Society is not a relief organization – that’s for Episcopal Relief & Development, Primates World Relief & Development Fund, and others. Compass Rose also is not specifically about education, consultation, and coordination of Anglican relief organizations – that’s the brief of the Anglican Alliance. Instead, Compass Rose’s focus is on connection, on raising and distributing resources to promote communication and dialogue and strengthen the bonds of affection within and among the provinces of the global Anglican Communion. I’ve always liked to think of Compass Rose as the unofficial fifth instrument of communion, right behind the actual four instru- ments – the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Primates Meeting, the Lambeth Conference, and the Anglican Consultative Council. That the Society is unofficial, based solely on relationships, seems so very Anglican to me. I think of the African concept of Ubuntu that Archbishop Desmond Tutu has often described in the context of Anglicanism: we are who we are because of others, and we belong in the great bundle of life. Compass Rose’s holy opportunity in mission is to participate in that great bundle. And to help, where it can, to bring the great bundle of life that is the Anglican Communion together and strengthen its connection — through unity without seeking unanimity. Ubuntu. One of the updates I look forward to most each year is the report of the Secretary General, Archbishop Josiah Idowu- Fearon, on the Anglican Communion. A highlight of his cover- age this year was plans for Lambeth 2020, and I was inspired to hear that Archbishop Justin has chosen 1 Peter for Lambeth 2020’s bible study. 1 Peter (the Biblical focus of the upcoming Lambeth Conference) is a passage that has had special meaning for me since my time in Tanzania during the Diocese of Western Tanganyika’s Jubilee, with its themes of cornerstones and the Ebenezer stone. 1 Peter is a holy rock collection, with every stone in scripture stacked in a pile in a single chapter, including the only mention I’ve ever been able to find of living stones. Come to [Jesus], a living stone… and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house. In the kind of coincidence, I’ve come to expect in the past six weeks in Jerusalem, living stones is also the popular pilgrimage term for today’s Palestinian Christians. I look forward to the study and reflection this passage will yield. We also heard from Phil George, the new CEO of the Lambeth 2020 Conference, whose focus is the mechanics and logistics of Lambeth 2020, and whose presence permits Archbishop Josiah to be, in his own words, an evangelist rather than an administrator. And it was a privilege to meet and speak with the newly elected primate of Tanzania, Archbishop Maimbo Mndolwa, and to meet the Chief Moderator (Primate) of the Church of South India, Bishop Thomas Oomen. We also heard from the charismatic and competent Michela Southworth, the new Director of Finance and Resources. Straight from the upper reaches of the private sector, Michela brings sophisticated experience, a fresh eye, and a GOD’S KINGDOM FROM THE BACK OFFICE: A Report From the 2018 Annual Meeting & Some Thoughts about The Compass Rose Society By the Reverend Della Wager Wells The Rev. Della Wager Wells is a recent graduate of Berkeley Divinity School at Yale, and currently a Porter Fellow and Episcopal Church Missionary at St. George’s College in Jerusalem. She was ordained to the transitional diaconate in the Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island. The week before she departed for the Middle East, she wrote this note in her blog Living Stones and Holy Hills. Della is the Secretary of the board of directors of the Compass Rose Society and is its legal counsel.