Thinking Anglicans

Archbishop's visit to Zimbabwe – day two

Updated again

BBC Archbishop of Canterbury set to meet Robert Mugabe

Independent Williams’s ‘healing’ Zimbabwe trip starts with anti-gay protests

ZimGuardian Archbishop of Canterbury cheered in Zimbabwe

Voice of America Anglican Leader Visits Zimbabwe Amid Dispute Over Renegade Cleric

Zimbabwe Guardian Archbishop of Canterbury arrives in Zimbabwe

BBC Archbishop delivers message of hope to Zimbabwe

Reuters Archbishop of Canterbury to confront Zimbabwe’s Mugabe

Telegraph via Sydney Morning Herald Aislinn Laing Forthright archbishop takes good fight to Zimbabwe

AFP Anglican leader voices ‘concerns’ in Mugabe talks

Lambeth Palace has now issued this press release: Archbishops meet Zimbabwean President

Following their meeting with President Robert Mugabe, the Archbishops of Canterbury, Central Africa, Southern Africa and Tanzania issued the following statement at their press conference…

Full text below the fold. The accompanying Dossier of abuses committed against the Anglican Dioceses of Zimbabwe is a PDF file here. And is now also available as a normal web page here.

Subsequent press reports:

David Smith Robert Mugabe offers Rowan Williams tea but little sympathy

Simon Tisdall If only UK politicians were as brave as Rowan Williams about Zimbabwe

Aislinn Laing Archbishop of Canterbury tells Robert Mugabe to act over church abuses
Archbishop of Canterbury confronts Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe over controversial Anglican split

New Zimbabwe Mugabe ‘on top of things’: Williams

Voice of America
Archbishop Hands Mugabe Dossier of Grievances
Zimbabwe’s Mugabe Meets With Anglican Leader Over Harare Church Dispute

AFP via Sydney Morning Herald Williams urges Mugabe to end attacks

Reuters Head of Anglican church confronts Zimbabwe’s Mugabe

BBC Rowan Williams hands Robert Mugabe Zimbabwe abuse file

Statement by the Archbishops of Canterbury, Central Africa, and Southern Africa and the President of the All Africa Conference of Churches the Archbishop of Tanzania

In our capacities as leaders of the Anglican Church in Africa and worldwide, we have just met President Robert Mugabe.

We come here to be in solidarity with our Anglican sisters and brothers at the invitation of the local church – the Anglican Province of Central Africa, which includes the five dioceses of Zimbabwe.

As you know this has been a time of immense trial.

Since 2007 Anglican congregations in Zimbabwe have suffered serious persecution at the hands of the police. They have been intimidated. Their churches have been closed. Properties, including schools and clinics, have been seized.

As representatives of the Anglican Communion, and with the support of ecumenical friends worldwide, we strongly and unequivocally support the efforts of ordinary Anglicans to worship in peace and to minister to the spiritual and material needs of their communities.

Today we were able to present President Mugabe with a dossier compiled by the bishops in Zimbabwe which gives a full account of the abuses to which our people and our church has been subject. We have asked, in the clearest possible terms, that the President use his powers as Head of State to put an end to all unacceptable and illegal behaviour.

We are proud of our church and our people who have suffered so much, but who continue to serve with love and with hope.

For our part we pray, and invite you to join us in praying, that the Anglican Church in Zimbabwe be allowed to carry out its mission in peace, and serve its communities with love.

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Father Ron Smith
12 years ago

Interestingly, in at least one of the reports from Harare, Excommunicated Bishop Nolbert Konunga actually accuses the Archbishop of Canterbury of himself being ‘a homosexal’. This slip of the tongue, for the ex-bishop, is indicative of his desire to completely align the ABC with efforts on the part of liberal Anglicans to accept homosexuals as partners in the Churches’ life and ministry. If Rowan eventually gets to meet up with the President (who is a personal friend of Kunonga), it is likely that he will use the homosexual issue as an excuse for his less-than-favourable- treatment of Anglicans in Zimbabwe.… Read more »

12 years ago

Is it also possible, Fr Ron, that Kunonga and his supporters will question the validity of the canon under which the dossier was compiled and is presented?

Kunonga is already excommunicate. Difficult to see what more the Anglican Communion can do to dissociate itself from him. Mugabe is, I believe, at least nominally a Roman Catholic.

12 years ago

I don’t think it is in any way belittling the importance of the Archbishop’s visit, or his own moral courage, to say that the significance of Rowan’s visit to Zimbabwe is chiefly symbolic. It is a little odd, Lapinbizarre, to imagine that the legal niceties surrounding the dossier will be weighing on anyone’s mind. The chief purpose of Williams’ visit is not to embarrass Mugabe (pleasant though it might be to imagine this), or to depose ersatz-Bishop Kunonga, but to give courage to Christians labouring under persecution. Assuring Africa’s Anglicans that they’re not forgotten by their co-communicants in the West… Read more »

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