To be a Covenant for All Peoples - GSE4  Day 2 Report, 20th April

1st Row, L-R: (GSPSC members) Bishop Albert Chama, Abp Mouneer Anis, AbpPeter Akinola, President Nathan, Abp John Chew, Abp Stephen Than, Abp Kolini, Abp Greg Venables
2nd Row: Bishop Anba Suriel, Bishop Johannes Seoka, Abp Eliud Wabukala, AbpDaniel Deng, Abp Nicholas Okoh, Bishop Stephen Kaziimba, Abp Valentini Mokiwa
3rd Row: Elder Fu XianWei, Abp Bernard Ntahoturi, Abp Ian Ernest, Abp Dabvid Vunagi, Mr Gu Mengfei, Bp Howard Gregory
Last row: Abp Jeffrey Driver, Bp Sunil Singh, Abp Bob Duncan, Abp Henri Isingoma, Bp John Howe, Bp Richard Ellena

(Photo: Primates and other leaders at the Istana with the President of Singapore during the afternoon courtesy call. Click on photo in the article to view the full image)

There is a great unsettling among many non-English Anglicans. Here is a report of that discontent among many of the Bishops and Archbishops, reflecting the concerns of their flocks. These prelates are mostly from the southern hemisphere. This seems to be where much of today’s energy and direction is coming. Those of us from the Northern hemisphere give them our support and prayers. Photo on right – St John the Apostle Anglican Church, Michigan – Easter, 2010

Day 2 of the 4th Anglican Global South-to-South Encounter was a time for all present to listen, meditate and share on the richness of the covenantal idea. As Archbishop John Chew reminded us, to allow the covenant effected by Jesus to “challenge and engage us… to reflect it in our lives.”

The day started off with the Holy Communion, led be participants from Asia, with the Archbishop of Melanesia, David Vanugi serving as the celebrant. Then themorning Bible Study followed, led by the Bishop Rennis Ponniah, the Assistant Bishop of Singapore. Sharing from Isaiah 6: 1-13, he exhorted us to be like the contrite prophet who was “undone by the stunning holiness of God, amazed by the sheer grace of God, and captivated by the salvation purpose of God.” It was a call to repentance and humility, that God cannot use us as His servants unless we are totally broken before Him.

In the Encounter’s second Thematic Address, Abp John Chew shared on being a “Covenant for All Peoples.” He took us back on a biblical and theological journey examining the covenant relationship between Israel and God. Focused on Jesus, we are able to recover the lost vocation that Israel could not live up to and be a Covenant for all peoples. He challenge all present to build our Covenantal relationships on a deeper biblical and historical basis.

In the subsequent plenary session, Archbishops Mouneer Anis and Emmanuel Kolini shared on some proposals for Global South Structures. Abp Mouneer touched on the “ecclesial deficit” and the need for new structures which will better support the work of Global South. “We are not forming a new Communion, because we are the communion”, he reminded us. He challenged all involved to truly own the movement, making every effort to keep the unity and be financially committed to it.

Abp Kolini introduced the idea of the Global South Anglicans as a new ‘Sinai,’ with an imperative, like Moses, to hear the Lord speak and be ready for bold action.

The delegates at the Encounter were also able to hear greetings from theArchbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, via a recorded video message. In the message, Abp Williams expressed his desire for the Anglican Covenant to trace a path for the future, one of careful listening and discerning, as well as mutual respect and obedience to one another. Abp Williams also shared his thoughts on the covenantal idea, noting how “covenant makes us aware of our new status, and the basis of our mission; the promise of being adopted and the promise of glory.”

In the afternoon, 25 primates and associates went to the Istana to pay a courtesy call to the President of Singapore, S.R. Nathan. Bishop Anba Suriel from the Coptic Orthodox Church and Elder Elder Fu Xianwei, Chairman, National Committee of the Three Self Patriotic Movement (TSPM) of China Christian Church were also amongst the guests. The President greeted this multi-national group with enthusiasm. Abp Peter Akinola spoke on behalf of the group and thanked the President for the inspiring example of Singapore as a harmonious society. Many nations around the world can learn from and be inspired by this peaceful, clean and beautiful city. The President responded by asking all present to do their best where they are to help societies find peace and avoid the pains of recent times.

Meanwhile, back at the Encounter, delegates gathered in small groups to share their reflections on the morning’s addresses and presentations.

The day ended with a reflective evensong led by Western Associates. Bishop Mark Lawrence shared a brief homily on Ephesians 1:15-end, encouraging us to look to Christ for wisdom and strength.

SINGAPORE: Rwandan Archbishop calls for a new Anglican Ecumenical Council
This is a new Sinai, said Emmanuel Kolini

By David W. Virtue in Singapore
April 20, 2010 Archbishop of Rwanda, the Most Rev. Emmanuel Kolini today called for a new Anglican Ecumenical Council, modeled on the Councils of the Early Church with a constitution taken from the ancient apostolic canons (35 & 38) on how a council should function.

“At this critical time in the life of the Anglican Communion we, the Global South, seek to form a functional movement actively loyal to the historic faith, God’s calling and mission of all Anglicans,” said Kolini in an address to some 130 delegates to the Fourth Global South to South Encounter.

While drawing back from calling for a full separation from the Anglican Communion led by Dr. Rowan Williams the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Rwandan archbishop said that a new General Assembly should be formed and should be led by a Primates’ Council in accord with a representative General Assembly.

The retiring African Anglican Primate is the second archbishop to call for new structures in the Anglican Communion, believing that the American Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church in Canada are heretical because they have stepped over the line in faith and morals and should no longer be considered part of, or having a voice in the affairs of the Anglican Communion. Middle East Archbishop Mouneer Anis yesterday called for the formation of a new Anglican Communion arguing that the Anglican Communion is dysfunctional, at war with itself and that a new structure is needed for a new communion.

“The Global South should be reconstituted to include all member churches and Dioceses that assent to the Anglican Covenant, and express formal commitment to the Resolution 1.10 of Lambeth 1998, and an agreed statement focusing our aims and strengthening mutual loyalty,” said Kolini in a prepared text.

The African Primate proposed a Primates’ Councilrepresenting all participating members churches would serve as the governing body which would discuss and decide matter s of faith and order, encouragement to mission in submission to the sovereign authority of Holy Scripture in loyalty to the Anglican tradition and formularies. An ad hoc design group would be responsible for formulating a constitution.

He suggested that a General Assembly be called every three years and initiatives be taken to restore unity among orthodox Anglicans and ecumenical partners. He said regional bishops’ councils and regional and local initiatives should be undertaken in mission.

“We need a new way forward. We are no longer in communion with Rowan (Williams) or TEC or Canada. After all the biblical reflections we are still in a state of crisis, nothing has been resolved over the years. TheWindsor Report, the Primates Meetings recommendations, the Lambeth Conference 2008 and the Windsor Continuation Group have all failed to bring any change in the drastic situation of the Anglican Communion.

“In a crisis the Church meets in council. Everybody is bound by the council. I have a vision for a renewed communion of the Faith Once delivered. Let the trumpet sound forth. I love the Anglican Communion but I am a Christian first. That gives me courage, purpose and a life.

“This is Singapore II. I was at Singapore I ten years ago. This is a sovereign and historical moment. The Anglican Communion is going to restore its worship, fellowship and its way of doing mission and preach the gospel. This is a new Sinai. We gather here to seek Gods mind and obey. When we went to Egypt we needed to get back to our roots.”

Kolini said that for the last 12 years as a primate, he could not think of a single meeting he left happy. “We passed many resolutions but the Lord’s solution is always biblical and canonical in the East and West. We are not here to make another resolution. Acts 15 provides the apostolic structure. We don’t want cultural imperialism. We had a terrible experience in Zanzibar (Tanzania). We could not share the Lord’s Supper.”

“We are standing at the crossroads. I say let my people go. This is the 4th trumpet call. The Holy Spiritled the first Council of Jerusalem. He will lead ours. We have what the biblical structure offers us we have the tradition of 2000 years.

“Moses led God’s people out of Egypt (Exodus 3). Now is a time for bold action. Let my people go. We need to declare to the world let my people go. We need a renewed communion, dependent on the Holy Spirit not resolutions. Singapore is a new Sinai.”


About Fr. Orthohippo

The blog of a retired Anglican priest (MSJ), his musings, journey, humor, wonderment, and comments on today's scene.
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  1. Pingback: ANGLICAN SOUTH TO SOUTH DISCONTENT AND HOPE « Fr. Orthohippo - Christian IBD

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