African bishops say Windsor Report is offensive - news from ekklesia

By staff writers
October 29, 2004

African Bishops say Windsor Report is offensive

-29/10/04

In a move that looks likely to scupper progress towards healing rifts in the Anglican communion, African Anglican Bishops have said that the invitation to express "regret" for the consequences of intervention in provinces, dioceses and parishes other then their own is "offensive".

In a joint statement formulated by Primates gathered at the African Anglican Bishops' Conference in Lagos, Nigeria, they also suggested that expressions of regret made by the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada did not go far enough.

Celebrating "the coming of age of the Church in Africa" the Bishops said that they looked forward to taking their "rightful place in the various councils of the wider church" and that the recently published Windsor Report had "the potential of being marked with God's grace."

The Windsor Report, published two weeks ago by the Lambeth Commission on Communion, suggested that both sides in the dispute over the ordination of Gay Bishop Gene Robinson, express regret for the consequences of their actions.

Although those supporting the ordination of gay clergy have expressed regret, African bishops have not.

Following the reports publication, Gene Robinson said he regretted that his groundbreaking elevation to the church leadership created turmoil in the Anglican Communion, but also said he felt he was not personally responsible for the rift and not sorry that he was elected.

Bishop Michael Ingham of the diocese of New Westminster also said he regretted contributing to the international rift in the Anglican communion.

In a strident attack on the report, however, the Archbishop of Nigeria said that the Windsor Report, fell "far short of the prescription needed".

The latest statement by African bishops, appears to continue to Archbishop's attack on the report, suggesting that further splits in the Anglican communion are inevitable.

"We call on the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada to take seriously the need for "repentance, forgiveness and reconciliation enjoined on us by Christ" (Windsor Report [134]) and move beyond informal expressions of regret for the effect of their actions to a genuine change of heart and mind" their statement said.

"Failure to do so would indicate that they have chosen to 'walk alone' and follow another religion."

"We reject the moral equivalence drawn between those who have initiated the crisis and those of us in the Global South who have responded to cries for help from beleaguered friends."

"To call on us to 'express regret' and reassert our commitment to the Communion is offensive in light of our earlier statements. If the Episcopal Church USA had not wilfully 'torn the fabric of our communion at its deepest level' our actions would not have been necessary" their statement said.

African Bishops say Windsor Report is offensive

-29/10/04

In a move that looks likely to scupper progress towards healing rifts in the Anglican communion, African Anglican Bishops have said that the invitation to express "regret" for the consequences of intervention in provinces, dioceses and parishes other then their own is "offensive".

In a joint statement formulated by Primates gathered at the African Anglican Bishops' Conference in Lagos, Nigeria, they also suggested that expressions of regret made by the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada did not go far enough.

Celebrating "the coming of age of the Church in Africa" the Bishops said that they looked forward to taking their "rightful place in the various councils of the wider church" and that the recently published Windsor Report had "the potential of being marked with God's grace."

The Windsor Report, published two weeks ago by the Lambeth Commission on Communion, suggested that both sides in the dispute over the ordination of Gay Bishop Gene Robinson, express regret for the consequences of their actions.

Although those supporting the ordination of gay clergy have expressed regret, African bishops have not.

Following the reports publication, Gene Robinson said he regretted that his groundbreaking elevation to the church leadership created turmoil in the Anglican Communion, but also said he felt he was not personally responsible for the rift and not sorry that he was elected.

Bishop Michael Ingham of the diocese of New Westminster also said he regretted contributing to the international rift in the Anglican communion.

In a strident attack on the report, however, the Archbishop of Nigeria said that the Windsor Report, fell "far short of the prescription needed".

The latest statement by African bishops, appears to continue to Archbishop's attack on the report, suggesting that further splits in the Anglican communion are inevitable.

"We call on the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada to take seriously the need for "repentance, forgiveness and reconciliation enjoined on us by Christ" (Windsor Report [134]) and move beyond informal expressions of regret for the effect of their actions to a genuine change of heart and mind" their statement said.

"Failure to do so would indicate that they have chosen to 'walk alone' and follow another religion."

"We reject the moral equivalence drawn between those who have initiated the crisis and those of us in the Global South who have responded to cries for help from beleaguered friends."

"To call on us to 'express regret' and reassert our commitment to the Communion is offensive in light of our earlier statements. If the Episcopal Church USA had not wilfully 'torn the fabric of our communion at its deepest level' our actions would not have been necessary" their statement said.

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