Thursday, 10 March 2016

Primate says Kenya will not attend ACC-16 in Lusaka

According to an announcement on the GAFCON website, the Anglican Church of Kenya will not participate in the upcoming Anglican Consultative Council meeting in Lusaka, Zambia, in April. The full statement is available here as a PDF - from the official provincial website, and is also copied below the fold.

The Most Rev’d Dr Eliud Wabukala has been the Chairman of the GAFCON Primates Council since 2010.

Earlier this year, he issued this statement following the Primates Gathering in Canterbury in January.

And then in February he issued this pastoral letter.

To the Bishops, Clergy and all the Faithful of the Anglican Church of Kenya

from the Most Rev’d Dr Eliud Wabukala, Primate of Kenya and Bishop, All Saints Cathedral Diocese Nairobi

Statement on Anglican Consultative Council 16, Lusaka

Greetings in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ!

I am deeply committed to the unity and restoration of our beloved Anglican Communion. It was for this reason that I and brother Primates from GAFCON and other orthodox provinces were willing to accept the Archbishop of Canterbury’s invitation to a meeting of Primates in Canterbury earlier this year, despite the representation of Provinces with which the Anglican Church of Kenya is in a state of broken communion.

It seemed that this might be an opportunity to restore godly faith and order and, although the resolution agreed by an overwhelming majority of those present was not all we hoped for, it sent a powerful message around the world that the collective mind of the Communion was to remain faithful to the Scriptures and God’s purpose for man and woman in marriage.

In particular, the Episcopal Church in the United States (TEC) was required to withdraw its representatives from groups representing the Anglican Communion ecumenically and it was agreed that TEC should not participate in votes on doctrine and polity in the Communion’s institutions.

However, the Presiding Bishop of TEC has made it clear that his Church will not think again about same sex ‘marriage’ and he expects his Church to play a full part in next month’s Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) meeting in Lusaka. This defiance of the Primates’ moral and spiritual authority has been supported by the Chairman of the ACC, Bishop Tengatenga, who has confirmed that TEC will participate fully.

There can be no true walking together with those who persistently refuse to walk in accordance with God’s Word and the Anglican Church of Kenya will not therefore be participating in the forthcoming meeting of the ACC in Lusaka.

An opportunity has been missed to use the ACC for good and it is increasingly clear that the GAFCON movement must continue to provide a focus for that godly unity so many of us desire.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Thursday, 10 March 2016 at 4:28pm GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Anglican Communion
Comments

"How these Christians do hate each other." Or am I remembering it wrong? I do remember the bit about Jesus refusing to eat with sinners and tax gatherers, though.

Posted by: Nathaniel Brown on Thursday, 10 March 2016 at 8:25pm GMT

“Let him go, let him tarry, let him sink or let him swim. He doesn’t care for me and I don’t care for him” The only question is how many others will swim along with Kenya and Uganda? Honesty should have dictated the way forward! Agree where we can and live as best we can with difference, the original plan for the meeting. This whole “Meeting of Primate” has become a shameful sham.

Posted by: Fr Paul D Dean on Thursday, 10 March 2016 at 8:45pm GMT

Another bunch homophobes walk off in a sulk. Good riddance.

Sooner they set up their own communion, the better.

Posted by: James Byron on Thursday, 10 March 2016 at 9:13pm GMT

There are only two ways of looking at this. The proposed non-attendance is either childish hubris or the result of pressure from American schismatics.

Posted by: Nicholas Henderson on Thursday, 10 March 2016 at 10:18pm GMT

'There are only two ways of looking at this. The proposed non-attendance is either childish hubris or the result of pressure from American schismatics.'

Well, I'm sure it makes you feel good to say that. However, there is a third possibility: that they genuinely believe they are being obedient to the will of God.

Posted by: Tim Chesterton on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 3:47am GMT

"This defiance of the Primates’ moral and spiritual authority."

It is good that he acknowledges that the Primates had no legal authority in the matter. Whether they have moral or spiritual authority is surely in the eye of the beholder. Many of us believe the contrary.

Sad that the fudge in January may have put negative pressure on the Canadian Anglican Church and other provinces.

Posted by: Iain Baxter on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 6:17am GMT

"Another bunch homophobes walk off in a sulk. Good riddance.

Sooner they set up their own communion, the better."

Fine if you are an LGBT person in the West but if I was a Kenyan I would want my archbishop there and having to listen to TEC and would be praying his ears might be opened and his mind unblocked.

Posted by: Kate on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 12:56pm GMT

Tim and Nicholas, it may well be a combination of all three, as they are not mutually exclusive.

Posted by: Tobias Haller on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 2:47pm GMT

"The proposed non-attendance ... there is a third possibility: that they genuinely believe they are being obedient to the will of God."

From a fundamental point of view, regardless of the merits of the current controversy, I have a significant problem with that point of view.

Jesus spent a lot of time with the unrighteous to the point of being accused of being a glutton, a drunkard, and a friend of tax collectors and sinners.

Jesus's response was that he had come to call not the righteous, but the sinners.

Jesus calls us, not to wait until the sinners are righteous enough to come to us, but for us to go out to the sinners.

If Archbishop Wabukala believes TEC is a sinner, then he should come to the meeting to convince TEC of the errors of its way. Again, and again, and again. It simply does not do to wait until TEC becomes sufficiently righteous on its own.

Posted by: dr.primrose on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 8:13pm GMT

So far only African Archbishops are declaring interest not to attend the ACC meeting in Zambia. I feel so sad to say let them go and this boycott of important meeting/gathering is more of a western method than an African way of dealing with dispute. Recently I wrote to the Archbishop of Uganda
http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/you-need-to-read-this-christians-response-to-an-anti-gay-ugandan-archbishop/#gs.Z_grElk
The hold of America schismatics on our African bishops is the new dangerous slavery that needs to be dealt with.

Posted by: Davis Mac-Iyalla on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 9:34pm GMT

Kate, it's rare that you can reason someone out of a position they've not been reasoned into. Kenyan bishops have heard all the affirming arguments, met LGBT people, and chosen to stick to their beliefs. If compassion or argument was likely to have moved them, it would've happened already. These aren't uneducated or unworldly men; they're simply men who're devoted to orthodox Christianity.

By trying to stay in the same club, you'll just retard progress in the West. Let them go their own way, offer asylum to any LGBT Kenyan who wants it, and we can, at long last, move past this impasse.

Posted by: James Byron on Friday, 11 March 2016 at 10:00pm GMT

Tim, I'm pretty sure EVERY time someone engages in childish hubris, they "genuinely believe they are being obedient to the will of God" [I mean, did anyone ever think, "I'm going to engage in childish hubris now"?]

Posted by: JCF on Saturday, 12 March 2016 at 9:58pm GMT

I dunno--I'm just not accustomed to Anglican bishops' being so foolish as to put themselves forward as having "moral and spiritual authority." Thinking of themselves that way has resulted in the humiliation of plenty of television evangelists. If they had any wisdom (to say nothing of humility) they'd think at least twice before so-describing themselves.

Posted by: Daniel Berry, NYC on Sunday, 13 March 2016 at 9:28pm GMT

"'There are only two ways of looking at this. The proposed non-attendance is either childish hubris or the result of pressure from American schismatics.'

Well, I'm sure it makes you feel good to say that. However, there is a third possibility: that they genuinely believe they are being obedient to the will of God." - Posted by: Tim Chesterton -

Well, Tim, I hope that you are right - that the non-attenders really do feel they are doing God's will by staying away from ACC16 - because it certainly seems contrary to what everyone except ++Uganda indicated at the recent Primates' Conference. And. certainly contrary to the expressed will of Jesus in his prayer to the Father: "That they may be one, Father, as you and I are one". Schismatic action is a fearful thing.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Wednesday, 16 March 2016 at 8:21am GMT

JCF said 'Tim, I'm pretty sure EVERY time someone engages in childish hubris, they "genuinely believe they are being obedient to the will of God"'

Undoubtedly. It does not follow, however, that every time a person genuinely believes they are being obedient to the will of God, they are actually engaging in childish hubris.

I have no window into other people's hearts, so I don't think i'm qualified to judge whether, on any particular occasion, hubris or a sincere desire to please God is the dominant motivation. So I repeat that to say this is either hubris or the result of being duped by American schismatics is overly simplistic.

Posted by: Tim Chesterton on Monday, 21 March 2016 at 8:25pm GMT
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