Saturday, October 06, 2007

CAPA Primates Communique Released: Calls for Special Session of the Primates, Ratify Covenant Proposal, Postpone Lambeth

CAPA stands for The Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa and is made up of 12 Anglican Provinces: 12 Angican Provinces in Africa and the Diocese of Egypt. These Provinces include Nigeria, West Africa, Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, Central Africa, Southern Africa and Indian Ocean. This Communique comes from the Archbishops of those provinces. Here's an excerpt - from TitusOneNine:

4. While meeting in Mauritius we received a copy of the report of the Joint Standing Committee (JSC) of the Primates and the Anglican Consultative Council. On first reading we find it to be unsatisfactory. The assurances made are without credibility and its preparation is severely compromised by numerous conflicts of interest. The report itself appears to be a determined effort to find a way for the full inclusion of The Episcopal Church with no attempt at discipline or change from their prior position.

5. We are convinced that what is at stake in this crisis is the very nature of Anglicanism – to understand it simply in terms of the need for greater inclusivity in the face of changing sexual ethics is a grave mistake. It is not just about sexuality but also about the nature of Christ, the truth of the Gospel and the authority of the Bible. We see a trend that seems to ignore the careful balance of reformed catholicity and missionary endeavor that is our true heritage and replace it with a religion of cultural conformity that offers no transforming power and no eternal hope.

6. In our considered opinion, however, there is a possible way forward. The Anglican Communion Covenant is the one way for us to uphold our common heritage of faith while at the same time holding each one of us accountable to those teachings that have defined our life together and also guide us into the future. We therefore propose the following actions:

a. Call a special session of the Primates Meeting. We believe that meeting together is essential if we are prayerfully to allow the Holy Spirit to work through our interactions and bring us to a common mind. We would need to:
i. Review the actual response made by The Episcopal Church – both their words and their actions.
ii. Finalize the Covenant proposal and set a timetable for ratification by individual provinces.

b. Postpone current plans for the Lambeth Conference. We recognize that such an action will be costly, however, we believe that the alternative – a divided conference with several provinces unable to participate and hundreds of bishops absent would be much more costly to our life and witness. It would bring an end to the Communion, as we know it. Postponement will accomplish the following:
i. Allow the current tensions to subside and leave room for the hard work of reconciliation that must be done.
ii. Ensure that those invited to the Lambeth Conference have already endorsed the Covenant and so can come together as witness to our common faith.

7. We make these proposals in good faith believing that they provide an opportunity for us to reunite the Communion consistent with our common heritage and give us a way forward. We also stand ready to work with the various instruments of the Communion to ensure their success.

8. We are very much aware of the plight of faithful Anglicans in North America during these difficult times. We assure them of our prayers, support and full recognition until the underlying concerns are fully resolved.

Read the whole thing here.


Kevin said...

Interesting, there asking for "a pause" to create instruments of discipline (in both sense of the word).

The irony is going into this East Africa has already spoken but West Africa has been silent (as well as other).

Kevin said...

Two more things:

1) I think Rev’d Dr. Leander Harding makes interesting observations on a point by point that BB has quoted here.

2) Be sure to check out the other CAPA communique. It is almost shameful that TEC deserves one unto itself. We really do not appreciate the time these men of God are talking to help us be true to the Word.

On point 2 - if you're under APO, I urge you to know as much about your ecclesiastical oversight context. I've learned more about a small section of the world in the past few weeks than I ever known, the president of the nation which provides my Biblical authority is a mixed bag, there items I really disapprove - but I bet Susan Russel is not that crazy about "W." Digging deeper I'm understanding why disagreements might be done (not justified but changes my thinking on how I'd approach if I were in the US State Dept). I've read World Bank stuff, other items, I now am praying for things I never did before. The issues the CIA Factbook and World Bank cited was stability in the Congo Basin, so that's a new prayer I had not asked before now.

I'd urge all to read the other CAPA Communique, but those Common Cause under APO, I'd urge you to really understand the context that these reports are written. Then don't bemoan or feel guilty about how much time were costing them but pray and think of ways to repay them more than money but in relationships that enrich both, it's one thing to give .07% to MDG and another to attempt to increase education, increase food production, decrease infant and maternal fatality for Esperanza, Gikundiro, Nshuti, Peter, Gershom and all the other as often they pray for us.

Okay, you can have the soapbox now.