Updated Monday and again Thursday and Friday
Monday Concerning the document below: there was an article in Christianity Today in November 2005, that discussed an earlier version in some detail, Anglicans ‘Severely Wounded’ (hat tip AG).
Thursday And there is now an interview with Bishop Rodgers, about this document in the Christian Post here.
Friday The Church Times carries a news report also: Root out tares from Anglican wheat, says Rwandan bishop.
The Rt. Rev. John K. Rucyahana is bishop of Shyira diocese, in Rwanda. He has recently published a large document which can be found at the website of The Society for the Propagation of Reformed Evangelical Anglican Doctrine (SPREAD). This body has an HQ address in Illinois, and its chairman is The Rt Rev John H. Rodgers,Jr. He is a former dean of TESM and a retired bishop of AMiA.
The document, which is in PDF format, can be downloaded here (650K). The covering letter includes this:
…This document is not written to compel or demand any action. Rather, we seek to clarify the state of the Anglican Communion and advise what actions we may need to take to defend the Anglican faith and promote the Gospel. We want to “know the times” and “understand what we should do” (1 Chronicles 12:32) as faithful followers of Jesus in the Anglican Church.
I hope this record will help us to be aware and alert as we engage in covenants with others in the Communion, so that we know fully who and what we are covenanting with.
This document is meant to help assess the level of contagiousness of the apostasy, heresy, and denial of the Bible which may be imported into our churches from the wider Communion. I am thankful to the Society for the Propagation of Reformed Evangelical Anglican Doctrine for their research and work on this document.
The petition is 44 pages long but starts out this way:
PETITION TO THE THIRD GLOBAL ANGLICAN SOUTH TO SOUTH LEADERSHIP TEAM AND PRIMATES ADVISORY GROUP
TO: The Leadership Team under the presidency of the Most. Rev. Peter Akinola and the Primates Advisory Group elected at the Third Global Anglican South to South Encounter held in Egypt on October 25-30, 2005.
The petitioner, The Society for the Propagation of Reformed Evangelical Anglican Doctrine, is a society dedicated to the spread of faithful, Biblical theology, as found in the historic Anglican Formularies and such other information as will support the same, to all people and all churches, particularly to those who are members of the Anglican Communion. The petitioner wishes to thank the Primates of the Global South for their orthodox leadership, and to share with your Graces the results of some of our research and analytical thought so that we may be equipped for whatever action the Lord graciously calls us to undertake…
The document argues at great length (emphasis and words in square brackets added) that:
…II. What the Global South upholds is true and historic Anglicanism. At one time the whole Anglican Communion was united in the Anglican faith, which is defined by the Articles of Religion and the doctrinal tenets contained in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer and Ordinal, and which holds as a central tenet that the Church is subordinate to the sovereign authority of Scripture.
III. The controversy over whether the Church should approve of same gender sexual relations shows that the Anglican Communion is no longer united in the Anglican faith, but is divided over whether the Church is subordinate to the sovereign authority of Scripture.
IV. Our research and reflection indicates that the churches and bishops of the Anglican Communion are divided into three groups concerning whether the Church should approve of same gender sexual relations and whether the Church is subordinate to the sovereign authority of Scripture.
V. The view of the authority of Scripture held by the revisionist [Rowan Williams] and traditionalist/pragmatist [George Carey] groups is irreconcilably contrary to the view thereof held by the Anglican [Peter Akinola] group.
VI. The revisionist and traditionalist/pragmatist groups can go together in the Anglican Communion because they share the fundamental belief that the Church is not subordinate to the sovereign authority of Scripture.
VII. Since the members of the Anglican group believe that the Church is subordinate to the sovereign authority of Scripture, they cannot go together with the members of either the revisionist group or the traditionalist/pragmatist group.
VIII. Scripture gives clear direction on how faithful Anglicans should deal with the revisionist and traditionalist/pragmatist groups, who are essentially false teachers in the Biblical sense.
IX. The ability of the Anglican churches to carry the faith will be weakened and finally destroyed if they wait too long to carry out the Biblical instruction on how to deal with false teachers…