NewsMon Aug 15, 2005 - 12:15 pm EST
Nigerian Prelate Calls for Suspension of Church of England from Worldwide Anglican Communion
ABUJA, August 15, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) -Â Peter Akinola, the Primate of Nigeria and one of the most influential Anglican bishops in the world, has called for the suspension of the Church of England, the mother church of Anglicanism, from the Worldwide Anglican Communion.
One of the most fundamental principles of western thought, identified by Aristotle, is called the Logical Principle of Non-Contradiction. Simply put, it means that two opposed ideas cannot both be true. It is not possible, for example, for any body of Christianity to both “celebrate” homosexuality and condemn it.
This principle, however, does not appear to apply to bishops of the Church of England. In an attempt to compromise between Christian sexual morality and modern secular libertinism, the Church of England allows homosexual clergy to “marry” under Britain’s civil unions law as long as they promise not to engage in homosexual practices with their partners. This decision has been widely ridiculed as being in contradiction not only of the Bible and 2000 years of Christian moral teaching, but against the written laws of the Church of England which explicitly condemn homosexuality and forbid gay clergy.
Akinola said, “I believe that the temporary suspension of the Church of England,” is the right course of action to take. The church will be subjected to the same procedures and discipline that America and Canada faced.” He ridiculed the policy, asking the Church of England bishops if they were intending to place cameras in the bedrooms of their clergy.
“I find it incomprehensible,” he said, “that the House of Bishops would not find open participation in such ‘marriages’ to be repugnant to Holy Scriptures and incompatible with Holy Orders.”
The decision of the House of Bishops, one of the two governing bodies of the Church of England, was, in the words of one African prelate, “the final nail in the coffin of the entire Anglican Communion.” Bernard Malango, the Archbishop of Central Africa told journalists that he would be writing an official letter of complaint to Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury.
In previous statements, Akinola offered ecclesiastical sanctuary to those Anglicans and clergy around the world who can no longer in conscience retain ties with the schismatic US and Canadian Anglican church structures.
Drexel Gomez, Archbishop of the West Indies backed the statements saying that he felt the Worldwide Anglican Communion was in immediate danger of disintegrating. He said, “I don’t see how civil partnerships will work. I will have a difficult time explaining this; my people will take it in a negative way. This is an added threat at this moment of tension within the communion. Two-thirds of the communion will not be able to accept it.”
Formal suspension would remove the Church of England from the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC), the governing body of the worldwide Anglican Communion, thus barring a say in worldwide policy. A suspension may also have effects in the secular life of Britain where the Church of England is the constitutionally established religion with the Queen as its head. Such a move would place the Queen and the Archbishop of Canterbury in the bizarre position of officially leading Anglicans who are technically outside the Anglican Communion. One commentator said it would be akin to the Commonwealth expelling Britain.
Akinola said he will be bringing the matter to a meeting of Anglican primates from the global South (Africa, South East Asia and South America) in September.
An official suspension, however, would likely be only a formal acknowledgement of a situation that already exists de facto since most Britons have already voted with their feet. In all the mainstream Christian churches in Britain, attendance at Sunday services is one of the world’s lowest. A large survey published earlier this year showed that by far the most common reason cited for English Christians abandoning church attendance was that true Christian doctrine had been replaced by modernist and politically correct leftist dogmas.
Read previous LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
Nigerian Anglican Bishop Threatens Schism Over Homosexual Agenda
Chaos in the Anglican Communion Showing at Church of England’s General Synod
Read Archbishop Akinola’s Statement:
Statement on the Church of England response to Civil Partnerships by the Primate of All Nigeria