- "In January I requested Bishop Herzog to grant me a Letter Dimissory to the Province of Nigeria. This he did, and the Letter was formally received by Archbishop Peter Akinola, Primate, to become effective after my retirement
- Since I have now been transferred from one Province in Communion with the See of Canterbury to another Province in Communion with the See of Canterbury, I am neither renouncing my Orders as a Bishop, nor am I abandoning the Communion of the Church."
What Bishop Bena does not point out is that the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) is not in communion with The Episcopal Church. The Archbishop of Nigeria will not receive communion with the Presiding Bishop. He has publicly stated that the two Provinces are not in communion. He refused to attend a meeting of the Joint Committee of the Primates and the ACC in 2004. His office reported, "Archbishop Akinola is baffled that the Anglican Communion Office (ACO) continues to act as if what ECUSA did does not really matter," said the Venerable Oluranti Odubogun, the General Secretary of the Church of Nigeria, who also re-affirmed earlier statements from the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa (CAPA) that condemned the US Church for Bishop Robinson's consecration. "By carrying out the consecration of Bishop Robinson ECUSA has 'removed itself from the fellowship of the Communion.'" The Archbishop understands communion with the Episcopal Church to be broken.
So, which is it? The CofN is not in communion with TEC. Both CofN and TEC are in communion with Canterbury. To leave one church in the Anglican Communion to work in another is a lateral move of "transfer" if the two churches are in communion. working with one is not the abandonment of the other. But if the two are not in communion, leaving the one to work with the other is to abandon the one for the other.
Bishop Bena has withdrawn from this Church and joined another not in communion with us. I believe that means that unless there is special exception made he is no longer a member of this House of Bishops, and therefor no longer a bishop in this Church.
He certainly is a bishop, he has not renounced his orders, he has not abandoned the Church. But he no longer holds any office in this Church, and he has abandoned the ministry of this Church.
What do you think? (I may regret having asked...)