Sunday, 22 July 2012

Global South Primates issue a Communiqué from Bangkok

The full text of the document: Communiqué of the Global South Primates Bangkok, Thailand, 20 July 2012

It starts out:

1. We, the Primates and representatives of 17 Global South Provinces, met in Bangkok, Thailand, from 18-20 July 2012, in conjunction with the Global South Conference on the Decade of Mission and Networking.

2. The theme of Conference called the Church to “Be Transformed by the Renewing of the mind to Obedience of Faith for Holistic Mission in a Radically Changing Global Landscape”, offering our sanctified bodies and renewed minds as living sacrifices for our Lord’s glory.

And it includes this passage:

6. We note with great sadness the passing of Resolution A049 at the 77th General Convention of The Episcopal Church which authorized a liturgy for blessing same-sex unions. This action confirms our disappointment that The Episcopal Church has no regard for the concerns and convictions of the vast majority of Anglicans worldwide.

7. We stand in solidarity with our brethren in the Communion Partners who have dissented from this action. We uphold them in prayer and support them in fellowship as they continue in their commitment to the evangelical faith and catholic order of the Church, as expressed in their Minority Report known as The Indianapolis Statement.

8. We also appreciate and support all the faithful in Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) as well as those in the Anglican Church in Canada who remain true to our biblical and historic faith.

9. We deeply respect and appreciate our historical and spiritual relationship with the See of Canterbury. We have written to the Crown Nominations Commission with concerns from the Global South and important principles for consideration as it nominates candidates for the appointment of a new Archbishop of Canterbury.

Those present are listed:

Primates Present or Represented:

The Most Rev Dr Mouneer Anis, Primate of Jerusalem & the Middle East
The Most Rev Nicholas Okoh, Primate of Nigeria
The Most Rev Ian Ernest, Primate of the Indian Ocean
The Most Rev Bolly Lapok, Primate of South East Asia
The Most Rev Dr Eliud Wabukala, Primate of Kenya
The Most Rev Stephen Tan, Primate of Myanmar
The Most Rev Henri Isingoma, Primate of Congo
The Most Rev Daniel Deng, Primate of Sudan
The Most Rev Bernard Ntahoturi, Primate of Burundi
The Most Rev Onesphore Rwaje, Primate of Rwanda
The Most Rev Valentino Mokiwa, Primate of Tanzania
The Most Rev David Vunagi, Primate of Melanesia
The Most Rev Joseph Kopapa, Primate of Papua New Guinea
The Right Rev Dr Johannes Seoka representing Southern Africa
The Right Rev Matthias Medadues-Badohu representing West Africa
The Right Rev Dr Chad Gandiya representing Central Africa
The Right Rev Peter Bartlett representing the Southern Cone

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We note with great sadness the passing of Resolution A049 at the 77th General Convention of The Episcopal Church which authorized a liturgy for blessing same-sex unions. This action confirms our disappointment that The Episcopal Church has no regard for the concerns and convictions of the vast majority of Anglicans worldwide.

We note with deep resentment that the Episcopal Church in the United States won't hate as we think they should hate. This action confirms our commitment to marginalizing the Episcopal Church and anyone else who rejects our hatred and rejection of our gay children.

Posted by: Daniel Berry, NYC on Sunday, 22 July 2012 at 2:24pm BST

Well, that's actually pretty tame for them, isn't it?

Posted by: Charlotte on Sunday, 22 July 2012 at 2:39pm BST

Interesting to see Chad Gandiya of the Central African Province in this group. He's probably trying to assert his 'conservative' credentials for a domestic audience that is much harangued and troubled by the anti-gay rhetoric of Nolbert Kunonga, the renegade Bishop of Harare, Zimbabwe.

At almost the same time the Central African Archbishop Albert Chama was recently married by the Anglican Church of Canada (mentioned in item 8) which is of course considered 'of the devil' for its liberal tendencies.

I suppose that its a case of running with the hare and hunting with the hounds.

Otherwise, this Global South grouping is mainly Equatorial African and they are risking quite a lot by allowing themselves to be quite so closely associated with the fissiparous Anglican Church of North America. For example, who paid for their visit to Bangkok?

Posted by: Concerned Anglican on Sunday, 22 July 2012 at 2:57pm BST

Charlotte asks if this is pretty tame for this grouping.

Yes.

Noticeable that now Anis, Ernest and Deng, amongst others, are taking a leading role the shrill rhetoric is much reduced.

Lambeth and the ACO were wringing their hands at the "loss" of these "moderates", but perhaps there was a deeper strategy?

Posted by: Martino Reynoldo on Sunday, 22 July 2012 at 6:16pm BST

The meeting was embedded in a wider Global South Conference for the Decade of Mission and Networking. No list of participants is included in their communiqué, and the photo accompanying it isn't high res enough to see quite who was there, but a note on another Anglican blog/news site says "[TEC Communion Partners] had some really fine men present in Bangkok, and one must suppose the same was true of those invited from ACNA." So there were a good handful of US conservatives, and it would be startling if there was no-one from Sydney.

As usual, "South" is a place in the mind. And it's just "men" who live there.

Posted by: A. McG. on Sunday, 22 July 2012 at 11:14pm BST

"We have written to the Crown Nominations Commission with concerns from the Global South and important principles for consideration as it nominates candidates for the appointment of a new Archbishop of Canterbury."

It would be interesting to see those concerns.

Especially now that the Anglican "Covenant" has crashed and burned in England.

Methinks the next Archbishop would be well advised to control GS expectations.

Posted by: Jeremy on Monday, 23 July 2012 at 12:15am BST

I have asked the Archbishop of Melanesia (who was present at Bangkok) about this “Global South Primates’ Communiqué” and he says he knows nothing about it. He says TEC, same-sex blessings and the Anglican Church of Canada were not even on the agenda or discussed; that the main focus was on mission and resource sharing issues and that in this respect the conference was very good. He says the only statement the Primates signed was a letter to the Crown Appointments Commission asking them to appoint an ABC who could hold the Communion together. Therefore, this “Global South Primates’ Communiqué” is a totally specious document, not discussed or agreed upon by the Primates but put together afterwards by a small group of people (some Primates and their US advisors possibly?) and put on the Global South webpage without the consent of the Primates whose names are attached to it. Notice that those names are only attached as “present” at the meeting and not as agreeing to or signing on to what was written above their names. Most of them do not realize such a statement has been sent out. A similar sort of thing happened after one of the earlier Global South Primates meetings when Primates’ names were added without their permission.

Posted by: Bishop Terry Brown on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 at 5:22am BST

I think Bishop Terry Brown makes a very important point here. If the archbishop of Melanesia knew nothing of the 'Global South Primates Communique', why on earth was his name appended to it?

It seems that 'there are more things in heaven and earth' going on here than even people present at the meeting were aware of. A wee bot sinister?

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 at 11:58am BST

Very interesting post indeed, Bishop Terry Brown.

Posted by: Lapinbizarre/Roger Mortimer on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 at 12:32pm BST

Yes, Bishop Terry's account reminds me of the old days!

That was when the ACO would turn up at Primates Meetings with the "Draft" Communiqué already written ............

It's helpful to be reminded of previous occasions when the Global South produced statements that were subsequently repudiated by those who were supposed to be signed up. It was a cause for scandal.

The ACNA types and their friends are a suppurating wound in our family life ...... they are orchestrating the Kenyan nonsense ....Fie on them!

Posted by: Martino Reynoldo on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 at 8:02pm BST

Bishop Terry Brown's information deserves a follow up by the press.

If true, it's a shocking indictment of the Global South and their Primates.

Posted by: Observer on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 at 9:02pm BST

To get a better feel for what happened at the conference you may want to check out Bp. Dan Martin's blog http://movingdiagonally.blogspot.com/. He was actually there and blogs about the writing of the communique. On July 20 Bp. Martin expresses frustration at the process of wordsmithing in English by those in charge who were not native English speakers while he and other native English speakers looked on.

Posted by: Rob+ on Wednesday, 25 July 2012 at 10:45pm BST

@Rob+ - It appears that Dan Martins is talking about the Conference communique which no one has suggested is anything less than legit (whether they agree with it or not). Here we are talking about the phony communique from the so-called "Global South Primates" which was clearly written without the knowledge and consent of several of the people it claims to be speaking for.

Hold the other children's hands and stay with the tour.

Posted by: Malcolm French+ on Thursday, 26 July 2012 at 4:47am BST

Whichever document he is referring to, +Dan Martin's blogging shows that the two communique's are not as neatly seperable as you would like to pretend. Clearly there were Communion Partner representatives from TEC there at the conference and like it or not, the result of this representation was recognized in the Primates' Communique. The conference Communique's lack of mention of this and ++Melanesia's purported ignorance does not make the Primate's Communique "phony" nor a "totally specious document." Rather +Dan's blogging supports the Primate Communique's authenticity. ++Melanesia should make a public disavowel of it if +Terry's blog comment here is correct as written. Why doesn't he? I suspect there is a more reasonable and less conspiritorial reason for the disconnect with ++Melanesia. Clearly we don't have all the information, and certainly not enough to cast such aspersions on official communiques' of the Global South Primates. But by all means stay on that tour of assuming the worst if it blesses your soul so much.

Posted by: Rob+ on Thursday, 26 July 2012 at 6:15pm BST

It is entirely possible that the so-called "Global South Primates Communique" was written and approved by all it claims to speak for. But since they have a regular history of adding people as signatories to documents those folk had never signed, I'm inclined to take the Primate of Melanesia at his word.

Dan Martins is clearly talking about the Conference communique. There are two documents and conflating them into one to suit your argument is . . . disingenuous.

Posted by: Malcolm French+ on Friday, 27 July 2012 at 6:12am BST

To reiterate, the Archbishop of Melanesia told me that he was not aware of a Global South Primates' Communique, even though he is a Global South Primate and he attended the whole meeting. Therefore, the so-called Global South Primates' Communique would appear to be an after the fact re-write or summary or addition to the overall Conference Communique, to which the names of the Primates were added without their permission. There was representation from both TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada at the overall conference, for example, the Bishop of Algoma was there. I have the impression that even the whole Conference was not excessively concerned with TEC, Canada or same-sex blessings. Part of the problem, I believe, is the the so-called Global South Primates website, which seems to have its own rigid agenda regardless of what the Global South Primates actually do or say. I have not had a chance to discuss this further with the Archbishop but will do so.

Posted by: Bishop Terry Brown on Friday, 27 July 2012 at 7:51am BST

For some reason the official communiqué of the conference - www.globalsouthanglican.org/index.php/blog/comments/a_communique_from_the_global_south_conference_on_the_decade_of_mission_and_ - is open for comment, whereas the "conference communiqué" discussed in this thread, is not - a practice, apropos of nothing, that is normal for Anglican Mainstream posts.

Posted by: Lapinbizarre/Roger Mortimer on Friday, 27 July 2012 at 4:03pm BST

The fact that 'Mainstream' doesn't allow comment on its posting should not be too surprising, when one realises that they have tried to usurp the true character of Anglicanism. I think that the title 'Slipstream' might be more descriptive of their real influence in Anglican affairs. They have little of any lasting consequence to offer in argument.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Saturday, 28 July 2012 at 12:16pm BST

I have had a further conversation with the Archbishop of Melanesia about his follow-up of the Global South Primates’ Communiqué of which he hadn’t heard. The Primates attended the full Conference during the day; they then met every day at 4:30 p.m. on their own. However, on the last day, the Primates’ meeting was moved up by a couple hours. Not all Primates (including Melanesia) were told or heard, so that when they appeared at the regular meeting time of 4:30 p.m., the meeting was finished. It was at this last Primates’ meeting that the Primates’ Communiqué was discussed. As Melanesia vigorously refused to sign the Singapore GSP Communiqué, it is tempting to think that he and others who might object to the Communiqué were simply excluded from the conversation. So, I take back my comment that the Communiqué was not produced by the Primates' meeting. It was produced by a limited number of Primates only, all the names were added and the result not shared with those who were not present.

Posted by: Bishop Terry Brown on Monday, 30 July 2012 at 6:14am BST

"So, I take back my comment that the Communiqué was not produced by the Primates' meeting. It was produced by a limited number of Primates only, all the names were added and the result not shared with those who were not present." - Bishop Terry Brown -

After Bishop Terry's elucidation of the fact that not all Primates of the global South were present to discuss the contents of the Communique (issued in the name of all of them), it is obvious that there were some Primates - located in the Global South' geographical area - who do not necessarily go along with those Prelates who are connected with the GAFCON agenda.

This does point out the necessity of separating out the separatist intention of GAFCON from the unitive intentions of some Global South Provinces.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Monday, 30 July 2012 at 10:13am BST

Yes, I do think this was more than just a GAFCON Primates meeting – there were those there who are not interested in being part of GAFCON, I am sure, such as Melanesia, PNG, Central Africa, Southern Africa, Kuching (new SE Asia Primate), etc. One question, though, is whether every “Global South” Primate was invited; in the recent past Brazil, Central America and Mexico have not been invited because of their supposedly liberal views; given the somewhat fluid definition of “Global South” which includes the economic powerhouse of Singapore-Malaysia and the church in mainline China, where was the Province of Hong Kong? Were they even invited? They are certainly not interested in GAFCON. Or did they decline to attend, fearing the GAFCON agenda? Aside from the closing session, the GAFCON issues were not such a part of this Conference and I still think this point should be appreciated.

Posted by: Bishop Terry Brown on Monday, 30 July 2012 at 8:39pm BST

It's long been evident that "Global South" is a name that was cynically chosen for PR purposes. It does not include Provinces in the "global south" that disagree with the schismatic agenda it lays out. But I suppose "Mostly Southern Reactionary Provinces Evangelized by CMS and SAMS, Plus Other Bits in the North That Agree With Us" was too unwieldly. The name was chosen to allow the group to ride the geopolitical coattails of anti-colonialism, in spite of the fact that the sort of Christianity it espouses is in fact itself a legacy of colonialism.

Posted by: Bill Dilworth on Sunday, 5 August 2012 at 5:24pm BST

I completely agree with you Bill. We in New Zealand, the South Pacific and Australia are geographically 'Global South', but do not (apart from Sydney) share the GAFCON exclusivist agenda. 'G.S'. does not represent a large area of the truly Global South.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Saturday, 11 August 2012 at 12:16pm BST
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