Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Centrifugal forces in America and the Archbishop of Uganda

Here is a significant Message from the Archbishop of Uganda. Please read and then move on to read my comments at the end.

ACNS 3873
Statement from the Archbishop of the Church of the Province of Uganda

The Rt Revd Evans Kisekka, the Bishop of Luweero Diocese, has my full blessing and support in receiving the clergy from St James Church, Newport Beach, and All Saints' Church, Long Beach, California, USA. These clergy are canonically resident in the Luweero Diocese and are priests and deacons in good standing of the Church of Uganda. On 20 November 2003, the House of Bishops of the Church of the Province of Uganda (Anglican) made the following resolutions:

"The Church of the Province of Uganda (Anglican) cuts her relationship and Communion with the Episcopal Church of the United States of America(ECUSA) on their resolution and consequent action of consecrating and enthroning an openly confessed homosexual Gene Robinson as the Bishop of New Hampshire Diocese in the Anglican Communion; and with any other Province that shall follow suit."

"Mindful of the fact that there are a number of dioceses, parishes and congregations in the ECUSA, which are opposed to the resolution and action taken by their convention and are determined to remain faithful to the teaching of scripture on human sexuality, to those dear brothers and sisters, we extend our solidarity with them and assure them of our continued prayers.

"We have recently concluded the 17th Provincial Assembly of the Province of the Church of Uganda. During that meeting, the assembly affirmed the House of Bishops' stance of broken communion with the ECUSA, and at the same time declared its commitment to, support for, and communion with clergy and parishes of the Anglican Communion Network who seek to uphold biblical orthodoxy and the faith once delivered to the saints. We condemn any attempt on the part of the ECUSA Bishop of Los Angeles to depose our clergy serving at St James Church, Newport Beach, and All Saints' Church, Long Beach. He has no jurisdiction over them, and we will not recognise his actions. Furthermore, we appeal to other provinces within the Anglican Communion to recognise our clergy as priests
and deacons in good standing.

We are grieved by the continued unbiblical actions of the leadership of ECUSA that has led to its separation from the majority of the Anglican Communion. We especially note that the Bishop of Los Angeles recently presided at the blessing of a same-sex union of one of his priests.

We pray for his repentance - and the repentance of all the ECUSA leadershipwho
voted for the consecration of a man in an active homosexual relationship as bishop of New Hampshire - and their return to the historic faith and communion of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church.

The Most Revd Henry Luke Orombi

Archbishop of the Church of the Province of Uganda

More information on the Church of the Province of Uganda click here:http://www.anglicancommunion.org/tour/province.cfm?ID=U1___________________________________________________________________


The reception by a diocese in Uganda of clergy from two parishes of the Diocese of Los Angeles in the ECUSA is the continuation of a growing involvement over the recent past of Bishops from Africa, Asia and South America in the American & Canadian Anglican scene.

What we now see is both the Anglican Mission in America, sponsored by the Archbishops of S E Asia and Rwanda, and the adoption of clergy and parishes in various parts of the USA and British Columbia by overseas Bishops.
Some would say that the ECUSA is beginning to disintegrate, not through the work of The Network, but by the gradual intervention of more and more overseas Primates. Parishes formerly of ECUSA and Anglican Church of Canada are now under the oversight of at least 6 Primates, Rwanda, S E Asia, Southern Cone, Nigeria, Uganda, Central Africa, and Kenya .

AND, if the forthcoming Report from the Archbishop’s Commission chaired by Archbishop Eames and due in October 04 has little or no effect and impact in terms of creating hope, it is probable that the number of American & Canadian parishes flying to overseas Primates for succour will increase rapidly. This will mark the real movement of change, rather than the formation and work of The Network, which is designed to preserve the ECUSA basically as is but without the homosexual agenda. Likewise in Canada, Essentials may also be left on the side-line if and when parishes also look for salvation from abroad.

If The Network and The Essentials are able to draw all genuine Anglicans together and provide pastoral support for those in distress then we could believe that centripetal spiritual forces are dominant in North American Anglicanism. However, it is apparent that right now the dominant movement is not to unite but to disperse, since centrifugal forces of various kinds are pulling Anglicanism apart. The radical liberals seem to be going in much the same way together; the indifferent seem to be wanting to stand still; but, those who see themselves as sound [orthodox] Anglicans are being pulled apart from each other and the center in many different ways – note the presence of AMiA, REC, the various Continuing Anglican Jurisdictions, the moves to foreign Primates and so on.

Perhaps too many well-intentioned people are thinking too much about their own little patch and of their own small jurisdiction or group and thinking (and praying) too little for the whole and for its being united in truth and love!

The Revd Dr Peter Toon August 24, 2004

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