Thinking Anglicans

Akinola responds to Eames

Updated Wednesday
The Living Church has published Archbishop Akinola Responds to Irish Primate which includes the following:

Archbishop Eames’ press officer, Janet Maxwell, explained the Archbishop Eames meant that “too much emphasis has been placed on the role of funding relative to theological perspective,” and he “in no way questioned the sincerity of theological conviction” of the leaders of the Global South nor was he “suggesting votes were purchased.”

Also, the Church of England Newspaper has this report from George Conger Irish Primate challenged to put up or shut up. He comments on this point as follows:

Allegations of vote buying and influence peddling by wealthy conservatives surfaced after the 1998 Lambeth Conference after liberals accused African and Asian bishops of supporting the conservative line in exchange for cash. The charges were investigated by Stephen Bates, the Guardian’s Religious Affairs correspondent, in his book A Church at War and found not to [be] true. Janet Maxwell, Archbishop Eames’ press officer told The Church of England Newspaper the Irish Primate’s remarks had been misconstrued. Archbishop Eames “in no way questioned the sincerity of theological conviction” of the Global South nor was he “suggesting votes were purchased”, Ms Maxwell stated. What he had said was that he “expressed concern that too much emphasis has been placed on the role of funding relative to theological perspective”, she told us, as requiring aid donors and recipients to share theological and political convictions was “not a moral way of looking at issues”.

An “open letter” from Archbishop Peter Akinola has been published by Anglican Mainstream and others:
Open letter to Abp. Robin Eames, Primate of All Ireland

This responds to the recent lectures by Abp Eames at Virginia and Yale and also a press interview in Washington DC.

Interestingly, it did not first appear on the Nigerian website, but on British and American ones.
Update Monday evening It now has appeared on the official Nigerian website, with yesterday’s date at the top.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
27 Comments
Oldest
Newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Tim
Tim
15 years ago

This Akinola chap seems a strange person. I can’t help but conflate his approach with a rant I was unfortunate enough to hear in my one and only visit to an evangelical church when things were heating up about Reading, a couple of summers ago. There was the same problem there: a public attack on someone not present to defend himself (which, even if true in this case, I note with interest Akinola’s response *in kind*), and choosing to insist all the further on his own brand of interpreted Scripture. This approach does not scale; if it’s homosexuality this decade,… Read more »

badman
badman
15 years ago

Yet again Akinola goes public at speed. But his statement is astonishingly unpersusasive – indeed, it makes no attempt at persuasion. What does he mean when he complains that Eames has “chosen to address me personally”? Akinola is not mentioned by name or referred to as an individual or, indeed, at all in either of the Eames lectures at Yale and Virginia – which both refer, correctly, to the actions of the Church of Nigeria. What is his basis for suggesting that a “Provincial only” view of the faith is being imposed on the whole communion by ECUSA? He does… Read more »

Neil
Neil
15 years ago

Perhaps another interpretation? Badman, you’re right, absolutely no persuasion sought here. Not sure I could blame Akinola for being tired of trying to reason with those who are so closed. “There is nothing in this open letter to demonstrate that Akinola is, as he claims, “continuing to work” to the end of “seeing the torn fabric of our beloved Anglican Communion restored.”” Ultimately it is surely in the hands of those who have deliberately and premeditatively ripped the fabric to mend it. And Eames seems to have allied himself with them – and “started” taking public pot shots at the… Read more »

Obadiahslope
Obadiahslope
15 years ago

As Bishop Roskam, one of the presenters at Nottingham has put it, the Ecusa presentation went out of its way to avoid the suggestion that other provinces were being asked to change their mind. In this way what Akinola says is also true, the passages of scripture normally used to establish the conservative case were not tackled in any detail. There was thoughtful exposition, but not of the scriptures ++Nigeria has in mind.

John Henry
John Henry
15 years ago

If Dr. Peter Akinola felt he had been wronged by Dr. Robin Eames’s public remarks about conservatives’ money being directed to more traditionalist African prelates and causes, why resort to a very public letter? Couldn’t, or shouldn’t, the Primate and Metropolitan of All Nigeria have taken the ‘high’ (and Christian!) road of bringing the matter to his fellow-primate’s attention in private? Why go public and exacerbate the divisions further?

J. C. Fisher
J. C. Fisher
15 years ago

Then, in regards to “the passages of scripture normally used to establish the conservative case” obadiah, maybe y’all will be demanded to justify these innovations? Not to mention +Akinola’s “And we all know that…” *gnosticism*? (I’m not holding my breath)

When will +PJA realize that his notion of “plain teaching of the Holy Scriptures” is a *non-starter*: killing dialogue before it even begins?

Wade Bond
Wade Bond
15 years ago

There could be unity in the Anglican Communion, but only if we all recognize the faithfullness of each other while we are in disagreement. Akinola, Duncan and their followers have made it clear that they have no intentions of doing that. Until that happens, we will continue to get closer and closer to realignment and a possible formal split, which, after all is what they really want. Let’s try to read the tea leaves, shall we? Akinola and company are going to set up their communion within a communion at the end of this month. The ABC will attend. In… Read more »

Dave
Dave
15 years ago

I think it was a very persuasive point that Akinola made, that it is not Nigeria, or the other orthodox provinces, that are making uni-lateral changes. Restating that one is staying with the biblical/traditional beliefs and practices cannot credibly be said to be a unilateral change!! Nor *only* driven by the local socio-cultural circumstances. Whereas the current attempted liberal revisions are exactly that! In fact I would go so far as to suggest that, because extreme liberals think of religion as primarily a socio-cultural phenomenon, that is all that their religion has become.. ps ABp Eames and likeminded folk are… Read more »

Alan Marsh
Alan Marsh
15 years ago

badman said: The “colonial” and “yoke of imperialism” jibes are not very well directed towards Eames, who is neither English nor British.

Dr Eames is a life peer and as such a member of the House of Lords in the UK Parliament. He is not English….

Tobias S Haller BSG
15 years ago

Akinola’s explanation here of the “mission” to North America as analogous to the C of E in Europe and the American Convocation is inaccurate, and doesn’t reflect the language he used earlier this year in his original explanation. See http://www.anglican-nig.org/prlttr_northamerica.htm

Clearly it is not a question of overlapping jurisdictions, but of “safe harbors” for those who have no church — according to Akinola. The analogy to Europe is completely false, as English and US clergy fully support and work with each other.

John Henry
John Henry
15 years ago

Commenting on Fr. Tobias S. Haller’s remarks about the overlapping CofE and ECUSA jurisdictions on the European Continent, I noted the other day on the Old Catholic, Diocese of Bonn, Web site that both Bishops, Gibraltar and Convocation of American Churches in Europe, are listed as “honorary Bishops Suffragan” of the Old Catholic Bishop of Bonn as far as their overlapping jurisdictions in Germany are concerned. Collaboration between all three jurisdictions is more than amicable.

Merseymike
Merseymike
15 years ago

I wonder which member of Anglican Extreme wrote that little missive?

I can’t really see why the planned new conservative grouping would wish to stay in communion with Canterbury, to be honest.

Just one more nail in the coffin of the AC.

Jim Naughton
15 years ago

The questions I still can’t answer about Archbishop Akinola’s convocation in the US is where it exists and who are its members. The last time I looked into this there was one parish in Oklahoma City that proclaimed allegiance to him, and pictures on its Web site did not indicate a large Nigerian membership.

That doesn’t prove there aren’t others members of the convocation, but Akinola “founded” it on a visit to the US a year ago. So, to date, the response of Nigerian ex-pats does not seem to support the notion that they are clamoring for him to intervene.

Göran Koch-Swahne
15 years ago

The above is true also for Sweden. There are several Anglican Chapels in Sweden who for centuries have catered to Scots and Englishmen in Sweden and their descendants. And the Swedish Church in London Ulrica Eleonora was built in 1710. One of the deeds presented to King Charles XII at the time was precisely a letter from the Bishop of London soliciting the construction of a Swedish Church. The Swedish congregation in London until then had met at a small Dissenters chapel. So Anglican Parishes in Europe are not the fruit of hostility and political ambition but of friendship and… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
15 years ago

To Dave,

“Public comments” in a lecture and press conference and “public comments” in an open letter adressed to an individual is not the same thing.

Try to be fair!

Neil
Neil
15 years ago

Goran:””Public comments” in a lecture and press conference and “public comments” in an open letter adressed to an individual is not the same thing.”

Your completely false distinction is what is unfair – the result is the identical.

Göran Koch-Swahne
15 years ago

So now we’re doing Teleology Ethics, are we?

Tunde
Tunde
15 years ago

Methinks Jim and co actually led ++Eames into the trap of advising ++Akinola in the interview only to have him later make allusions to ‘church leaders in the developing world’ under financial inducements all in a bid to elicit such a response.

What I do not understand is why some are really spoiling for a split? Are they all out to make those that seem to be ‘sitting on the fence’ take sides? If so, CONGRATS! You have succeeded in putting some distance between the two Archbishops.

I weep (really) for the Church.

steven
steven
15 years ago

Wade Bond:

I do not think your analysis of reasons for the split is accurate, but I agree with your overall prognosis. On the prognosis, I don’t believe that anything is arranged between the ABC and Akinola at this point. At best, the ABC seems to be trying to ride the wave and arrive at some type of accommodation that would put him in the intermediate position you describe. However, I think that ship left the dock a long time ago.

Steven

wmc
wmc
15 years ago

Fascinating comments. They reveal more about their authors by their tone than by their content. Put yourself in Nigeria’s place. Your colleague and brother, who also is the chairman of the group putatively trying to put Humpty back together again, publicly expresses his belief that you are taking bribes from American conservatives to promote their agenda. If false, this is a terrible slander. What do you do to clear your good name and to express the depth and sincerity of your beliefs? A private letter won’t suffice, because the slur is public. A press release would be the tool of… Read more »

Christopher Johnson
15 years ago

Dr. Akinola went public because, thanks to ENS, Eames had a public forum for his libels. As for the charge that Dr. Akinola was not personally addressed, that is quite true. But any honest person who can read the English language knows who Robbie meant.

Merseymike
Merseymike
15 years ago

Yes, Tunde, I do think there should be a split.I want nothing to do with the revolting opinions expressed by Akinola and the Nigerian church.

Tobias S Haller BSG
15 years ago

As to Nigerian congregations in the US, I can say that there are a number of Nigerian members in my own congregation; and we have been working to begin having a liturgy in Igbo once a month. The members respect and work with me as their pastor, in a parish that proudly proclaims that all are welcome regardless of sexual orientation. Some of them have talked with me about Archbishop Akinola and they consider him something of an embarrassment. As the one put it, “He does not speak for me, and his concerns are not my concerns.” He also pointed… Read more »

J. C. Fisher
J. C. Fisher
15 years ago

Christopher Johnson’s “But any honest person who can read the English language knows …” sounds much like +PJA’s “And we all know that…”

Pray tell from *whom* is all this GNOSIS coming? (Because that’s a spirit that deserves *testing*, IMO)

Göran Koch-Swahne
15 years ago

Now, according to the news pieces above, AB Eames said nothing of “bribes” in his press conference/interview. But it has been reported over the last few years that Uganda and other Central African Provinces would no longer accept grants from ECUSA. Just read Virtueonline. As to AB Akinola being addressed, AB Eames twice in his lecture said “Nigeria” having said the Anglican Church of Nigeria once. And then he was talking of the change in the constitutions of this Province, not of “bribes” or of AB Akinola himself. “The Anglican Church of Nigeria has announced changes to its Constitution. Originally… Read more »

Jim Naughton
15 years ago

“Methinks Jim and co actually led ++Eames into the trap of advising ++Akinola in the interview only to have him later make allusions to ‘church leaders in the developing world’ under financial inducements all in a bid to elicit such a response.” So wrote Tunde, whom I believe is Archbishop Akinola’s communications director. I am not quite sure I follow this sentence. I asked Archbishop Eames if he was concerned about the role that individuals and foundations–many of them from outside the Church–were having on the debate over the Church’s future. He said he was and elaborated in the manner… Read more »

Derek
Derek
15 years ago

Huh. I hadn’t said anything more on this thread ’cause I was hoping to see a response from poster Tunde. Here’s a perfect public venue to clear up the potentially mistaken record. Such a shame that the explanation requested by Mr. Naughton has not yet materialized…

27
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x