Thinking Anglicans

Lambeth Conference and GAFCON

From an ACO press release: The Primate of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, has called on Anglican bishops to attend the next Lambeth Conference despite differences within the Anglican Communion.

Lambeth Conference: Archbishop of Cape Town calls on bishops to “express your difference”.

…”I know people talk about the fabric of the communion as torn”, he said, “but we are all fallible human beings in need of God’s love and grace, and we need each other.”

Archbishop Thabo made his comments in a video on the Lambeth Conference website. In it, he says: “As said in Sepedi [the language of Northern Sotho]: one bangle doesn’t ring, two bangles will make a beautiful noise. So we are never alone in this journey.

“Whether you agree with where the communion is, whether you don’t agree, come and express your difference in this beautiful space which is a gift from God. Don’t just stay at home and say ‘I’m not going’.

“We want to hear that voice. It’s not a conference of like-minded people; it is a conference of Anglicans. I mean, for God’s sake, Anglicans, from our inceptions, we’ve always had push and pull. So push and pull should not be a distraction, but it should be celebrated.

“It’s what I call at home, ‘celebrating the gift of difference’. So I encourage all bishops and their spouses to make every possible effort to come and see what God is doing through us in his world…”

The Chairman of the GAFCON Primates Council, Archbishop Nicholas Okoh of Nigeria, has issued a statement which is headlined simply Warning from the Chairman, headed by a photograph of the marriage last year of Toronto suffragan bishop Kevin Robertson, who has been invited to attend the Lambeth Conference in 2020. Bishop Robertson was also among those who this week attended this: New Anglican Communion bishops receive induction in Canterbury, Lambeth and the ACO.

Archbishop Okoh eventually concludes that:

…With great sadness we therefore have to conclude that the Lambeth Conference of 2020 will itself be an obstacle to the gospel by embracing teaching and a pattern of life which are profoundly at odds with the biblical witness and the apostolic Christianity through the ages…

This was promptly reported in Christian TodayGAFCON leader says Lambeth Conference ‘will be an obstacle to the gospel’

Andrew Goddard had earlier analysed this situation: Lambeth 2020: what is the future of the Anglican Communion?

Last September, the Church of Nigeria had issued a communique which included this:

…It supports the House of Bishops of the Church of Nigeria in reaffirming the Statement of GAFCON 2018 that the Archbishop of Canterbury should invite as full members to Lambeth 2020 the Bishops of the Province of the Anglican Church in North America and the Province of the Anglican Church in Brazil, and that he should not invite those Provinces that have endorsed by word or deed sexual practices that are in contradiction to the teaching of Scripture and Resolution 1.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference, unless they have repented of their actions and reversed their decisions. In the event that this does not occur the Bishops of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) unanimously resolved that they will decline any invitation to attend Lambeth 2020 and all other meetings of the Instruments of the Communion.

Even earlier, the Church of Uganda had made a similar decision: Ugandan bishops pledge to boycott Welby’s landmark Lambeth Conference 2020.

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Archbishop Kattey set free

We reported a week ago that the Most Revd Ignatius Kattey, the Archbishop of the Niger Delta, had been kidnapped in Nigeria. The Nigerian Press has now reported his release.

Daily Post Nigeria Bishop Kattey regains freedom from kidnappers
Osun Defender Kidnappers release Anglican bishop
P M News Nigeria Kidnapped Archbishop Kattey freed
The Sun news Archbishop Kattey set free
Leadership Bishop Kattey Released In Rivers
This Day Live Kidnapped Anglican Bishop Kattey Regains Freedom

Update

The BBC has also reported the Archbishop’s release: Archbishop Ignatius Kattey freed by Nigerian kidnappers.

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Nigerian Archbishop kidnapped

The Most Revd Ignatius Kattey, the Archbishop of the Niger Delta, has been kidnapped in Nigeria. David Hamid, the suffragan bishop in Europe, has this report: Nigerian Archbishop with links to our Diocese has been kidnapped.

A Nigerian Anglican Archbishop, one of two who visited our diocese earlier this year, has been kidnapped by armed men on Friday 6 September. The Most Revd Ignatius Kattey and his wife Beatrice were kidnapped near their residence at Eleme, Port Harcourt, last Friday 6 September.

Archbishop Ignatius is the Dean of the Nigerian Church, and Archbishop of the Niger Delta Province, and the second most senior Anglican bishop in the country. According to reports, the kidnappers abandoned the Archbishop’s car containing Mrs Kattey after a police chase. The Archbishop is still missing.

Archbishop Ignatius accompanied Archdeacon of Italy and Malta Jonathan Boardman on visits to Turin and Padua last April, and along with his colleague Archbishop Joseph Akinfenwa came to my office afterwards to report on their visit and explore with me how our partnership and cooperation might be deepened.

Apparently, no group has claimed responsibility and no ransom demand has been made.

Please pray for the safe release of the Archbishop.

The Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion has a brief statement on its website.

There are many reports in the Nigerian press including these.

This Day Live Anglican Archbishop Kattey Kidnapped in Rivers
Nigerian Tribune Anglican Arch-Bishop kidnapped in Rivers State •Police begin manhunt
The Guardian Anglican Bishop Kidnapped In Rivers
PM News Archbishop Kattey kidnapped by gunmen

Other reports include:

Anglican Communion News Service Nigeria Archbishop and wife kidnapped
Anglican Ink Anglican Archbishop kidnapped in Nigeria

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