Thinking Anglicans

Global South: Nigerian press release

This can be read in the original here. What it says is this:

Press Release

Friday, 18 November 2005

Our attention has been drawn to some media reports of one or two primates alleging wrongful inclusion of their names in a document they were privy to its formation.

While every person is entitled to a change of opinion, the incontrovertible and indisputable fact remain that at our meeting in El Sukhna, the first draft of the response was circulated to all present to peruse, and give us any additional input or objection. It is pertinent to say NO ONE objected. All those that responded will see that the final draft reflected their inputs.

The presentation of the Archbishop of Canterbury to us was made public and has been widely discussed by many who were not present at our Encounter. It is only fair that our collective response to that publication should also be publicly available. Our response was released when it was fully ready and timing was not deliberately planned as being suggested.

We find it pitiable that the media spin is drawing attention away from the deep Biblical discussions contained in our response.

This controversy has been brought upon us, by those that would undermine all that we stand for in preserving the sanctity of our One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic faith. They are the ones who are dividing the Church. Of course, anyone who wishes to have their name removed from this letter is free to do so. All formal requests to dissociate will be immediately effected.

This information has earlier been communicated to all concerned.

Signed
Most Rev. Peter J. Akinola DD, CON
Chair,
South –South Encounter

Ruth Gledhill has some comments about all this in Comment on Global South letter

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John Henry
John Henry
15 years ago

The Primate and Metropolitan of All Nigeria vents his archiepiscopal anger and inveighs against the President Bishop of Jerusalem and the Primate of the Southern Cone, who tried to hold him to a higher standard of ethics with regard to an official statement of the Primates attending the Egypt meeting, which one denies having signed and the other described as an outrage in the way it was published: “This controversy has been brought upon us, by those that would undermine all that we stand for in preserving the sanctity of our One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic faith. They are the… Read more »

Peter
Peter
15 years ago

My brother in Christ, John Henry!
Please read your comments once again and try to understand why you are participating in pushing faithful people away from the Anglican Communion.
Yours,
Peter

Augustus Meriwether
15 years ago

Well, there is certainly no hope of any non-schismatic resolution to any of this while people insist on publishing critical open-letters to each other. This is stating the obvious, really, so it makes me wonder, Peter, whether Archbishop Akinola WANTS to be ‘pushed away’.

The tone of this latest one is intimidatory. Reminds me of a Mafia Godfather. “You wanna leave the family, huh? Clivio? I thought we were brothers. Once you are outside – you are OUTSIDE, you understand me? You wanna betray us, Clivio? Anyone else wanna betray the family?”

Tom
Tom
15 years ago

We cannot loose sight of the fact that it has been the unilateral actions of ECUSA and the ACCan that have brought about this strife. If these bodies had demontrated restraint and a true concern for the well-being of the Communion none of this would have occured. The anger that has been demonstrated is surely a Scriptural sign that God does not bless this ‘new thing’ that is being done!

Jenny
Jenny
15 years ago

Thank you for your response, Peter. John Henry’s comments are symptomatic of the intemperance among a small but shrill liberal voice from the North. Peace and reconciliation is called for.

Jenny

stephen bates
stephen bates
15 years ago

Isn’t it funny how conservatives like I presume Jenny to be are always so willing to excuse Abp Akinola, whatever he and his colleagues say or do and however bullying his language, yet come down like a ton of bricks on their liberal opponents whenever even the mildest criticism is ventured.
I think we’re into mote and beam territory here Jenny. Peace and reconciliation starts with a recognition of faults on both sides, not demands for unilateral surrender.

David Chillman
David Chillman
15 years ago

“Peace and reconciliation is called for.” But on what grounds? If the only peace on offer is complete capitulation, is that really “peace”? How can an unswerving refusal to move an inch be called “reconciliation”? You can only have reconciliation if both sides are prepared (in principle at least) to give some ground and meet halfway. The minute that one side demands that all its points be satisfied, reconciliation becomes impossible. I have no problem with a call for peace and reconciliation. Realistically – it is the only way. But what I see at the moment is not a desire… Read more »

Simon Cawdell
Simon Cawdell
15 years ago

I am astonished by a few of the previous correspondents wishing to gloss over the unfortunate fact that ++Akinola included the signature of one primate without apparently bothering to check if he was OK with the final version, and another whether he was willing to be publcally associated with it. Whichever view of anglicanism you tend to, and from whatever culture you emanate the only appropriate response from ++Akinola here is a very humble apology. A little less bluster and rather more humility might become the primate of Nigeria.

Jenny
Jenny
15 years ago

I do not excuse bullying – on whatever side – conservative or extreme liberal. Actually I do not call myself a conservative. What I look for though is a careful listening by both sides to the many sides of this argument. I find ‘the North’ does not always listen patiently and carefully to the South, and I am sure I can add ‘and vice versa’.

George Conger
George Conger
15 years ago

Didn’t the Primate of Brazil pad his Panama statement with a few names of Bishops who didn’t sign that document? I recall Bill Godfrey of Peru and Miguel Tamayo of Uruguay protested the inclusion of their signature on that document. Not being English I am at a loss at times in understanding the subtleties of language of some of its ecclesiastical practitioners. What exactly does his statement “In no way did I give permission for my name to be associated with the letter” mean? Is it a rejection of its publication, a rejection of its arguments, a rejection of being… Read more »

Steven
Steven
15 years ago

Jenny: You’re wasting your breath. The only point of talking (by liberals or conservatives) is to convince the other side to change their position, even by a little. Neither side is going to change their position and move in the direction of the other on the VG affair or on the question of whether such things are appropriate in the future. End of discussion. No basis for negotiation. I’ve been party to many negotiations in a quarter century of practicing law. There is nothing to negotiate here, but how to effect a clean and fair separation. I wish it could… Read more »

Bearelite
Bearelite
15 years ago

John Henry:

AB Peter A’s remarks “This controversy has been brought upon us, by those that would undermine all that we stand for in preserving the sanctity of our One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic faith…”

“by those” is a reference to the mainstream media’s reporting, and not to any of his fellow primates.

Simon Sarmiento
15 years ago

George: My belief is that Handford is saying that he did not, and would not, sign the statement. One has to assume that the reason for that is that he does not agree with what it says, or at the very least with the way in which it says it.

Pete
Pete
15 years ago

Steven, you are correct in saying that there is nothing to negotiate, but, I believe, wrong in thinking that departure is necessary. Why can you and I not worship in the same pew? I’d be willing to bet that you and I would differ on far more issues than the place of homosexuals in our church. So why is this one issue so divisive?

steven
steven
15 years ago

Pete: Why break over this one issue? Well, there are two answers to that. First, it is not a small issue. If it were a small issue to liberals, they would already have backed down on it by now rather than continue to move the denomination towards a split over the matter. The same is true for conservatives. A variety of folks here will tell you that this is because we are bigoted fools (or worse). Believe them if you like, I think most conservatives/ traditionalists could probably care less what liberals think on such matters at this point. However,… Read more »

Tunde
Tunde
15 years ago

he does not agree with what it says, or at the very least with the way in which it says it. -Simon

Wished he had said that when they were all together. Wished he even told his brother primates he was at the meeting reluctantly. Sure he would not have been included in the first place.

What exactly the problem is remains mere speculations and inferences. Conclusions on such basis seem to be the source of the controversy in the first place. Where does Bp. Handford stand?

Göran Koch-Swahne
15 years ago

Tunde wrote: “Sure he would not have been included in the first place.”

Seems he wasn’t, since he says the meeting was organized without him.
In his own Province ;=)

The “problem” here seems clear enough to me:
A “draft” is circulated at a meeting (for “some” to see).
A couple of weeks later a “private” Letter is issued on the Internet…
This “definite” version had not been circulated at the meeting, only the draft.

Conclusion 1. The “signatories” never signed what they were not allowed to see.

Conclusion 2. There is a pattern here.

Pete
Pete
15 years ago

Steven – My concern and question is why does the size of the issue matter? I disagree with much of what the RCC teaches, yet could sit in their pews and worship. It is their excluding me from their table that keeps me away. But the worship does not depend on congruence of doctrine; it depends on openness to the pneuma, who moves where she wills, even in the pews of those we consider wrong. I am not tarred with the brush of wrong belief simply by worshipping with those whose doctrines differs.

steven
steven
15 years ago

Pete: At some point “the rubber meets the road” so to speak. What is a theological issue ultimately becomes a basis for action one way or another in the church. Thus, if self-affirming unrepented active homosexual behavior is self-affirming unrepented and ongoing sin, it may be reasonable and godly to exclude the practitioner from the communion rail as well as from church office. If not, probably not. Thus, your own post points out the reason for separation–different theologies lead to different and antithetical actions in and by the church. Depending on theological position, these actions will be seen as good… Read more »

Pete
Pete
15 years ago

Steven, I am sorry that you feel the need to not worship with those whose beliefs differ too much from yours. If you leave, our pews will lose a needed voice.

I am concerned, though, that the assumption of growth and size is being taken (by many, not just by your statement above) as an indicator of proper interpretation. The American mega-feel-good-churches are a case in point.

Pete

Steven
Steven
15 years ago

Pete: I’m not sure where you are coming from on this worship thing. Many people worship together that are not members of the same denomination and most protestant denominations practice open communion. I have never said I would not worship with you, nor am I aware of a reason why I would not at this point in time. We have been talking about church government (as far as I’m concerned), not shared worship opportunities. On size not indicating correct doctrine, I am in agreement. But then, neither does small size indicate correct doctrine–as the ever decreasing (and soon to be… Read more »

Merseymike
Merseymike
15 years ago

I don’t believe in the notion of ‘correct doctrine’ at all – simply different opinions, which we then judge to be right or wrong according to the tools we consider valid.

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