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Thursday, 26 June 2008

Gay and proud

Oh, the irony! Thousands of Gay Priders march through Jerusalem as, in the same city, those conservative (read "bigoted") bishops who want to give Church liberals a bloody nose fail to get their schism within the Anglican Communion.

It seems the Jerusalem Pride went off without event, even though past marches have been marred by violent protests by ultra-Orthodox Jews. This time around there were some small protests away from the march route.

Meanwhile, those really frothy bishops who want to break away from the main Church because of the American Episcopals' stance on gay priests will be sadly disappointed.

According to Reuters – reporting on the GAFCON, or Global Anglical Future, conference – "Conservative Anglican leaders meeting at a rebel summit expressed frustration with the church's leadership on Thursday but indicated that an outright schism might be avoided."

This week-long convention of hundreds of conservative bishops and clergy, says the Reuters report, "opened on Sunday amid talk that it was a first step towards a split between conservative and liberal wings in the 77-million-strong Anglican Communion".

But mid-way through the conference, conservative leaders spoke only of making GAFCON a "movement", without indicating how such a process would be handled and if there was enough support among the bishops to initiate a split.

"There is a sense of betrayal and abandonment by the existing leadership and Communion structures," Archbishop Benjamin Nzimbi of Kenya said at a press conference.

But he added that "there is a genuine desire to continue to reach out to other Anglicans around the Communion who share our common faith."

But there's Lambeth to come, and there could be fireworks. Well, there've been some of those before this ten-yearly meeting of the frockist tendency gets going towards the end of next month.

One bishop, Michael Nazir-Ali, has already said he won't be attending.

"I would find it difficult to be in Eucharistic fellowship with, and teaching the common faith alongside, those who have ordained a person to be bishop whose style of life is contrary to the unanimous teaching of the Bible and the Church down the ages," the Pakistan-born bigot said in a statement released in Jerusalem during a media conference earlier this week.

He was referring there to Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, who, against the wishes of huge chunks of the Anglican Communion, was mumbo-jumboed into bishophood and, as you can imagine, is rather saddened by the whole nasty business.

1 comment:

Stuart Hartill said...

You may want to watch the 'serious' and religious press next week for a funny story.
A rumour is circulating to the effect that the infamous Nigerian bishop Peter Akinola was awarded a 'best costume' prize in Jerusalem Pride.
It started as a joke, but seems to be picking up momentum, and it might be interesting to see if some of his rival 'brothers in Christ' decide to use it against him.