Tanzanian Bishops declare they are in severely impaired communion with Episcopal Church

12 December 2006 - Print Version

News & Views

(Anglican Church of Tanzania)

The House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Tanzania (ACT) issued a statement December 7 saying that its “communion with the Episcopal Church (USA) is severely impaired” in light the 75th General Convention’s response to the Windsor Report.

The bishops also declared that ACT “shall not knowingly accept financial and material aid from dioceses, parishes, Bishops, priests, individuals and institutions in the Episcopal Church (USA) that condone homosexual practice or bless same-sex unions.”

Meeting in Dar Es Salaam, where the next Primates’ Meeting will be held in February 2007, the bishops noted that the Episcopal Church did not “adequately respond to the requirement made to them by the Anglican Communion through the Windsor Report by their failure to register honest repentance for their actions.”

During the past three years, leaders of at least 14 out of the 38 Anglican provinces have issued statements saying that they are in a state of “impaired” or “broken” relationship with the Episcopal Church. It is unclear how many provincial synods have ratified the statements.

One of 12 Anglican Provinces in Africa, ACT has 19 dioceses representing both evangelical and Anglo-Catholic Churches.

The full text of the statement follows:

1. Mindful of the fact that the Anglican Church of Tanzania issued statements in 2003 following the election, confirmation and eventual consecration to the Episcopate of Gene Robinson a practicing homosexual clergyman, whereby we declared that henceforth we are not in communion, namely, communio in sacris, with:

Bishops who consecrate homosexuals to the episcopate and those Bishops who ordain such persons to the priesthood and the deaconate or license them to minister in their dioceses;
Bishops who permit the blessing of same sex unions in their dioceses;
Gay priests and deacons;
Priests who bless same sex unions;

2. And because in their June 2006 General Convention, the Episcopal Church (USA) did not adequately respond to the requirement made to them by the Anglican Communion through the Windsor Report by their failure to register honest repentance for their actions that were contrary to the dictates of the Holy Scripture and the teaching of the Anglican Church as expressed in Resolution 1.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference and thereby indicating that they were deliberatively choosing to walk apart from the rest of the Anglican Communion;

3. Therefore after its meeting on 7th December 2006 in Dar es Salaam, the House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Tanzania hereby declares that its communion with the Episcopal Church (USA) is severely impaired but the Anglican Church of Tanzania remains in communion with those who are faithful to Biblical Christianity and authority of Scripture who remain in the Episcopal Church (USA) or have left or are considering leaving that church body for the same reasons that we have stated above.

4. Further to the consequent state of the severely impaired communion, the House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Tanzania declares that henceforth the Anglican Church of Tanzania shall not knowingly accept financial and material aid from Dioceses, parishes, Bishops, priests, individuals and institutions in the Episcopal Church (USA) that condone homosexual practice or bless same sex unions.

5. The House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Tanzania declares that we are committed to concerted prayer for renewal in the Anglican Communion that will further the mission of Jesus Christ and will render greater glory to God.

6. Finally, the House of Bishops of the Anglican Church of Tanzania hereby mandates the Primate of the Anglican Church of Tanzania to forward this statement to the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church (USA), to the Archbishop of Canterbury and to all the Primates of the Anglican Communion.

 

4 Responses. Comments closed for this entry.

  1. SInner Says:

    Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

    and what’s even better
    is that this resolution takes care of Jeffrey John, Colin Slee, the Bishop of Southwark… the Archbishop of Canterbury too!

    truly Tanzania shows the way forwards!

  2. Wade Says:

    As I have been saying for quite some time, the Global South (excluding South Africa) will set up their own alternative communion based somewhere in the southern hemisphere.  The Network folks in the US will follow them.  They may or may not remain in communion with Canterbury. 

    The rest of us (including Canada, TEC, England, the rest of Europe, South Africa and maybe others) will continue to be in communion with each other and continue to preach the gospel of reconciliation. 

    I’d say it is uncertain who will end up with the “Anglican Communion” name, but my guess is that the more progressive one will because that will be the one still centered in England. 

    And if anyone thinks England will go with the Global South, I would say they are just kidding themselves.  The CoE is almost as liberal as TEC is.  The big difference is that the CoE is just not as open about what they are doing.

  3. Sinner Says:

    Wade, you just don’t get it do you?

    First, which commion will have 100 Million adherents
    and which will have less than 10 Million?

    more importantly: which commnunion will be recognised as Christian by every other Christian church - and which will not!

    The answer is the Global South Anglican on both counts.

    If you are aligning yourself with people who the Global South have said are effectively pagan, and lead by a Christ-denying priestess

    then repent while you have time!

  4. mccabe Says:

    Why are numbers important? If that is the case then the Church of Rome wins the vote and they have just issued some very interesting statements related to the Bible and errors found in it.

    Is faith a democracy? Then the billions of non-christians win the vote.

    The Roman Church and the Eastern Orthodox churches far out number the Evangelicals of this world. They most certainly would not agree that the Bible is of more importance then the Church in Council, Creeds or the authority of the liturgy. The Orthodox tradition specically states that the liturgy and Creeds predate the Bible and are of equal authority to it.

    Of course, there are also people like me that know that unless you are annointed by the Holy Spirit you can never be a Christian. Evangelicals are certainly baptized with water but, they seem to often fail the annointment by the Holy Spirit requirement for true membership in the Body of Christ.