3/20/2009

The Church of Nigeria recognizes ACNA as Province of its Anglican Communion?

The Convocation of Anglicans in North America has issued this press release:

"CANA Praises Church of Nigeria Decision to be in Full Communion with Emerging Anglican Province

HERNDON, Va. (March 20, 2009) – The Convocation of Anglicans in North America praised the unanimous decision of the Church of Nigeria Standing Committee to be in full communion with the emerging Anglican province, the Anglican Church of North America. The Church of Nigeria is the first Anglican province to formally accept the emerging province as a branch of the Anglican Communion. CANA is a founding member of the Anglican Church in North America, which includes about 700 congregations.

“Once again, we within CANA are grateful to the Church of Nigeria for creating a formal branch between orthodox Anglican congregations in North America and the well-respected Province, as the Church of Nigeria did for CANA several years ago. It is a significant decision that will strengthen the unity among those in the U.S. who wish to remain faithful to their Christian beliefs while remaining in good standing as part of the worldwide Anglican Communion. Our continued prayer is for Anglicans across the world to be able to stay faithful to orthodox beliefs within the Anglican Communion. This decision by the Church of Nigeria formalizes that hope,” said CANA Missionary Bishop Martyn Minns."

This has been confirmed by the Common Cause Partnership, HERE. That press release said in part,

"The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) has resolved unanimously to be “in abiding and full communion” with the emerging Anglican Church in North America. The Church of Nigeria, which counts more than a quarter of the world’s Anglican Christians as members, is the first Anglican province to formally accept the Anglican Church in North America as its North American partner within the Anglican Communion.

In making their decision, the leaders of the Church of Nigeria’s 153 dioceses also recommended that their province send a delegation to the Anglican Church in North America’s inaugural Provincial Assembly, to be held June 22-25 in Bedford, TX, “to demonstrate our enduring partnership in the Gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

Bishop Robert Duncan, archbishop-designate for the Anglican Church in North America, thanked the Church of Nigeria for their decision. “In this one action, leaders representing every diocese in the Church of Nigeria, which in turn count as members more than a quarter of the world’s Anglicans, have declared themselves to be full partners of the Anglican Church in North America. They have stated clearly that we stand together on the authority and trustworthiness of the Bible, the historic creeds and the uniqueness of Jesus Christ as our only Savior and Lord. We look forward to welcoming our Nigerian brothers and sisters to observe our inaugural assembly in Bedford this June.”

“Both in Nigeria and in North America,” added Bishop Duncan, “We understand our mission very similarly, that is, to reach our societies with the transforming love of Jesus Christ.”

There is nothing yet on the Church of Nigeria website, but these two witnesses seem to concur that that is what the Standing Committee of the CofN has done. Nothing of this was reported in the communique of that Standing Committee meeting.

As I suggested earlier it seemed to me that the presence of Moderator Duncan and Bishop Minns at the meeting of the Standing Committee of the Church of Nigeria was no accident.

Now they can go home, assuming of course that the CofN really did say ACNA was recognized.

Interestingly,according to these reports, the Church of Nigeria seems to think that their recognition of the ACNA makes ACNA "a branch of the Anglican Communion." The Anglican Communion is not the vine of which the churches are the branches, nor is it the head office of which the local churches are branch offices. What has happened is that the Church of Nigeria has recognized ACNA, much as the Church of England might declare itself in communion with a church not part of the Anglican Communion. The Church of Nigeria is free to do so, of course. But it is not as easily free to claim that in doing so it has expanded the Anglican Communion.

Given that the CofN is recognizing ACNA and not TEC, this new thing has officially brought the matter to a head: there is at least one member church of the Anglican Communion recognizing some other body instead of The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada as the "Anglican" entity in North America with which it will be in communion. In doing so it has also redefined the Anglican Communion to its liking.

If all of this is true, the fat is in the fire.

28 comments:

  1. That and $3.50 will get them a Frappuchino at Starbucks.

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  2. This makes me think of TEC's action a few years back, in which we established full communion with the ELCA. Has anybody told ELCA that they're now members of the Anglican Communion? [now removing tongue from cheek]

    As for ACNA now being part of the Anglican Communion, Duncan might ask his friends in AMiA, "How's that Rwandan endorsement workin' for ya?"

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  3. Sounds more like magical thinking to me...

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  4. There is precedent.

    This is from memory which is increasingly flaky, but, as I recall the story ...

    When the Church of South India was created (1946? 48?) the decision (presumbaly of the Lambeth Conference 1948) was that, as not all of its clergy had been episcopally ordained, it could not be in full communion with the Anglican Church, despite the fact that Anglicans were amongst its constituent members.

    However it was welcomed into communion with, first, the Anglican Church in South Africa, and then other provinces, and is now (to the best of my knowledge) in communion with Anglicanism generally.

    Sorry if the details are not correct but I believe my summary of the process to be right.

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  5. INTERBREEDING and PRETENDING...add FAKERY, MANIPULATING and DECEIT!

    LIVING in the world of RELIGIOUS PRETEND is spiritually unhealthy (and emotionally challenging) we are told...it has often been said that God would like us to speak GODS TRUTH.

    We are encouraged to speak GODS TRUTH.

    A current non-TRUTH appears to be emerging via endless Press Releases regarding a overly wishful NIGERIAN CHURCH (Anglican Communion) outreach program for North American interbreeding through a FALTERING takeover/infusion plan at The Anglican Communion.

    Friction will come from such a unhealthy display of fiction.

    Attempting to become REAL members of The Anglican Communion by infusing anemic and jaundiced spiritual PROCLAMATIONS of exclusion, demonizing and hate against other Anglicans is troubling and a non-starter.

    Thiving Church properties and repeating lies regarding LGBT Christians, OUR families, OUR friends, OUR coworkers, OUR family in Christ may be a genetically modified, impure and dangerous assault on The Body of Christ.

    Bob Duncan and Martyn Minns cause moral deformation with their imagined Anglican Reformation.

    Very sad. Very abusive. Unholy, unloving acts against other Christians that will lead to their defeat.

    Arrogance has been their history so far as they seek out their very private ¨place to stand.¨ There is no reason for us to play PRETEND and wish things are different than they REALLY are in Duncanminnsland...they want us out of The Anglican Communion.

    No sense listening to more deception...no matter what the Nigerian Church (Anglican Communion) PROCLAIMS.

    Duncan and Minns and their North American accomplices are NOT members of The Anglican Communion.

    Not now, not ever.

    My ¨official¨ ANGLICAN COMMUNION PROCLAMATION encourages ANGLICANS (anywhere/everywhere)to ignore Bob Duncan and Martyn Minns and continue to enjoy our good spiritual health...the Church you save may be your very own.

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  6. OZ has spoken! (Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.)

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  7. This is the new reality. Just as the conservative members of the Anglican Communion are unable to prevent TEC and the Anglican church of Canada from recognising (in some form) same sex blessings, so too the progessive members of the Anglican Communion can not prevent the conservatives from being in full communion with conservative anglicans in North America. Nigeria will not be the only province to make this move.
    We will end up with an Anglican Communion, in which a signficant proportion of anglicans recognise a alternative body in North America.
    De jure TEC will remain within the Anglican Communion. De facto, many Anglicans will recognise an alternate body.
    Messy and sad all together.
    Obadiahslope

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  8. Not a precedent, Paul, because validity of orders is not in question here, and because the establishment of the Church of South India did not involve conflicting "Anglican" provinces within the same territory.

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  9. Nigeria and the Canaanites keep pushing don't they? So how is Dr. Williams going to show up at GC and tell the deputies that if they continue the "gracious restraint" of B033 something good will happen?

    FWIW
    jimB

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  10. Mark+, could you describe the two Anglican entities in the Philippines? Are there talks of them unifying? Is there relationship amicable? Could you compare/contrast the situation in the Philippines and that of North America?

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  11. robroy: The two churches in the Philippines - the Episcopal Church in the Philippines and the Philippine Independent Church have a concordat between them, and the PIC has one with TEC as well. Their relationship is not only amicable, they share a common seminary, St. Andrews, and they share a common episcopate, since the PIC Bishops asked for and received Apostolic orders from TEC in the late 1940's (I am writing without my references before me).

    The contrast between the situation in the Philippines and NA is striking. PIC existed for 80+ years as an independent church with bishops, but not in apostolic succession. ECP begain as a missionary enterprise of TEC in about 1903. ECP became more and more Filipino. PIC was always that.

    The two churches are not divided by differences that make them incompatible with one another. Indeed there is full communion between the two.

    Talks of unification seem less important than continuing efforts to support one another.

    ECP is a member church of the Anglican Communion. PIC has representatives at various meetings, but is not a member of the Anglican Communion. Their history and informing polity and practice is much more that of the RC church.

    There is no parallel in this to the business of TEC and ACNA or any other body claiming to be the "real" Anglican presence rather that TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada.

    That's my take.

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  12. Lapin,
    without wishing to over state things, your analysis of the CSI leaves out the presence of the Mar Thoma church, which is full communion with the Anglican Communion, and TEC. Perhaps the situation is somewhat like the Phillipines.
    The Phillipines and South Indian examples establish that churches can be in full communion with the anglican communion, while operating in territories occupied by a church which is a full province in the Anglican Communion. But as Mark ploints out that is different from someone claimimg to replace or supplant another province.

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  13. "...the Mar Thoma church, which is full communion with the Anglican Communion." As, I believe, is the Church of Sweden and a number of other churches, none of which is a member of the Anglican Communion, which claims no authority over their actions. So the relevance of this point is? Incidentally, I have noticed several "anonymous" posts recently. Does Preludium not have a rule on this?

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  14. In other news, I have just recognized my back yard as The One and Only Original and Unparalleled Republic of Outer Franistan.

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  15. Lapinbizarre...Preludium's sitedeacon, who can neither spell or remember Preludium's own rules at times, forgot.

    Anonymous sometimes shows up as the lead identifying name, but the writer will put a real name in the text. I forgot to look carefully.

    Anonymous, be warned!

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  16. I think there's definitely a question about how mutual the embrace is between Nigeria and ACNA, especially the Nigerian persecution of gays. I tried to ask the question on T19, but it got deleted. I suggest asking of the question there at every opportunity. (Sort of like Cato ending every speech with "Carthage must be destroyed.") Eventually, a response will have to be given.

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  17. I plead guilty to not putting my name on my last post. But I am afraid, Lapin, that you are guilty of a worse crime: not checking your facts before you post.
    The Church of Sweden is not in full communion with the Anglican Communion. Even if it were, unless the Convocation of Episcopal churches in Europe has expanded into Europe, the Swedish example would not raise the same issues as PIC and Mar Thoma.
    The Mar Thoma church and the PIC are, and there are others. http://anglicansonline.org/communion/infull.html
    The point is that the Anglican Communion has happily lived with more than one church being in full communion with the Anglican Communion in one geographical area. Paul Bagshaw's excellent post made the issues clear.
    And there are local agreements, like Porvoo, on top of that.
    Obadiah Slope

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  18. The point is that the Anglican Communion has happily lived with more than one church being in full communion with the Anglican Communion in one geographical area.

    You choose to be obtuse Obadiah, as you have on this very topic before! Because regarding TEC, the ACoC and ACNA, that is not the point at all.

    Being a church in full communion with the Anglican Communion and being a constituent church of the Anglican Communion are two very different things.

    TEC and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America are in full communion with one another. The Anglican Church of Canada and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada are also in full communion with one another. But that does not make either of the Lutheran churches either in communion with the Anglican Communion or constituent churches of the Anglican Communion.

    Also neither of the Lutheran churches are "in competition" with or trying to cannibalize either of the Anglican churches by encouraging dissatisfied Anglican parishes to leave the Anglican churches and join the Lutheran churches, OR encouraging them to steal Anglican church property to bring along with them as they join one of the Lutheran churches.

    Neither is that happening in India regarding the Church of South India, the Church of North India or the Mar Thoma Church. Neither is that happening in the Philippines regarding the Episcopal Church in the Philippines or the Philippine Independent Church. Neither is that happening in Europe regarding the Old Catholic Churches of the Union of Utrecht or any Anglican Churches.

    The same cannot be said of ACNA. It completely is being created to be in competition to TEC and the ACoC, to cannibalize perishes from them, steal their property and ultimately to take their rightful places in the Anglican Communion. That has been the purpose of ACNA from inception.

    Neither do the ranks of clergy of any of the above mentioned churches that are in communion with one another consist of deposed bishops, priests or deacons from one of the other churches, or clergy ordained to be claim jumpers by 3rd party churches. All of which is true of ACNA.

    Please STOP insulting our intelligence with this soft peddling of ACNA in our midst, because that has never been what ACNA was about.

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  19. Soory, that post should read "ven if it were, unless the Convocation of Episcopal churches in Europe has expanded into SWEDEN....
    Obadiah Slopes off

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  20. "I believe" was an intentional qualification, OS, but yes, I should have checked.

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  21. No David, I do not choose to be obtuse. I can't help it.

    Being a church in full communion with the Anglican Communion and being a constituent church of the Anglican Communion are two very different things.

    Agreed. I don't think I confused these two things.
    TEC and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America are in full communion with one another. The Anglican Church of Canada and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada are also in full communion with one another. But that does not make either of the Lutheran churches either in communion with the Anglican Communion or constituent churches of the Anglican Communion.

    Agreed. I never said that either.
    Further I take your point about (current) competition although it is likely that some of the churches you mention were in competition in the past, and some dioceses have had complicated histories of who they have been affiliated to.
    I think you might be behind the news with regards to ACNA and the Anglican Communion. The Gafcon primates made it clear following the last primates meeting that they have doubts about the formal stuctures of the Anglican Communion. It is very likely that they will set up an alternative structure for ACNA. There will be something like one and a half Anglican communions depending on how you look at it. TEC will have the proud boast of being in the (official) Anglican Communion. ACNA will have the proud boast of being in communion with more Anglicans than TEC.
    Messy and sad.
    Obadiah Slope

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  22. obadiahslope, in an earlier thread you asked for evidence that Archbishop Akinola has supported and/or abetted Christian riots and violence directed against Nigerian Muslims. I have no new evidence to offer, as I think the evidence already offered is sufficient to prove that he has and does.

    Let me ask a different question: What is the evidence that supporters of ACNA back Archbishop Akinola's calls for violence against Christians who are gay, lesbian, or transgendered?

    Here is the response of posters on TitusOneNine to Kevin M's posts. They say they are "amused." I think they are not only amused but rather pleased by Archbishop Akinola's repeated aggressions and support for violence against Nigerian Christians who are gay, lesbian, or transgendered.

    I think we can see by these comments, and others like them, that the TitusOneNine/Stand Firm group would be happy to be able to do unto others in their own countries what Nigerians, with Archbishop Akinola's support, have been able to do unto others in Nigeria.

    http://www.kendallharmon.net/t19/index.php/t19/article/anglican_church_in_north_america_recognized_by_nigerian_anglican_church/

    (Some of us remember also the Nigerian posters here and at Thinking Anglicans who used to call for "jungle justice" against GLBT people.)

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  23. ACNA is pleased that they are recognized by a Province whose leader is considered the biggest embarrassment within the Anglican Communion, due to his being implicated in violence against Muslims and his desire to jail all gays?

    Birds of a feather and all that.

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  24. Mark+, I haven't gotten back to this thread. First, thank you for the response.

    There are certainly differences between the situation in the Philippines and North America. But in the Philippines, we have a provincial member of the Anglican Communion and an extra-provincial member of the communion (membership defined here by being in communion with Canterbury and sending its bishops to Lambeth). Of course, one could argue semantics and a different definition of "being a member", but mine is a fairly standard one.

    It is interesting that both structures in the Philippines derive their ecclesiastical lineage from the TEC - as does the ACNA and the TEC, itself.

    The main difference between the situation in North America and the Philippines is that the two groups are in communion. With the lawsuits, there is little hope of reconciliation. There are also no vitriolic cries of overlapping jurisdictions which violate ancient traditions (really laughable when made by female bishops).

    So the situation in North America will be a provincial structure and an extra-provincial structure - what I like to think is a pre-provincial structure.

    One unknown is the Covenant. If the final form has actual teeth and the TEC is given second class status because it refuses to sign on and if the ACNA does sign on, how will things change? To ambiguous to even speculate.

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  25. Charlotte.
    Jim Naughton's accusation is that Akinola has not answered questions about the Yelwa massacre. He has been quite specific about this and I respect that.
    You go a great deal further in alleging directly that Akinola has supported and/or abetted Christian riots and violence directed against Nigerian Muslims.
    And you say you do not need to provide evidence. Oh dear.
    I am not the representative of everyone who posts at T19 or standfirm, and I frequently take part in discussions on those sites where I take a different position to some of them. I am quite willing to take responsibility for my own comments, and provide links for assertions I make. I note with regret that you decline to provide evidence for yours.
    Obadiah Slope

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  26. I've always wondered why a covenant would need teeth. Is it so it can smile, or is it so it can bite us in the behind?

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  27. Oh dear, oh dear, obadiahslope, I did not say I didn't have to provide evidence of Archbishop Akinola's support for riotous Christian violence against Muslims in Nigeria. I said I had provided it already. As I had -- on an earlier thread on this blog, that had nothing to do with Jim Naughton Tsk. You are usually much better than this.

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  28. Um, Charlotte, you were not quite that specific.. but, no matter, can you point to your evidence please?
    Obadiahslope

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