Category : South Africa

(CEN) Andrew Carey on the Consecration in Jesmond Parish–A wrong move on the part of evangelicals

The main problem with the Jesmond action is that it is ultimately so isolated and represents a fragmented and factional way of moving forward. It is an action that arises from a sense of frustration rather than a careful strategy. It is not borne of unity among critics of the Church of England. In fact it adopts the tactics of liberals in that it attempts to place facts on the ground rather than proceeding on the basis of unity, wide agreement and good order.

I say this as someone who thoroughly approves of protest and various forms of disengagement directed against the hierarchy. But Jesmond has leaped towards the nuclear option and evangelical Anglicans should not be in the business of ‘first strike’. The nuclear option should only be used as a weapon of the last resort.

The Church of England has not changed its teaching on doctrinal, creedal and canonical matters and until it does so the Church of England’s conservatives should organise, prepare and arm themselves but they should not deploy.

Read it all (requires subscription).

Posted in - Anglican: Analysis, Church of England (CoE), Ecclesiology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, South Africa

(IOL) Priest seeks R4m from Anglican church of Southern Africa over loss of job

The Anglican Church of Southern Africa faces a civil action of over R4 million from one of its former priests following differences with the church which span a period of more than 10 years.
Reverend June Major, who now lives in Durban, is suing for alleged financial loss, impairment to her dignity and emotional stress, allegedly as a result of a job she applied for in Australia and then did not get.

She has blamed the church’s failure to provide important “information timeously” to the Diocese of Wangaratta, for her inability to secure the job, which would have earned her R42 000 a month and other benefits.

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Posted in Law & Legal Issues, South Africa

Gafcon UK Statement on the consecration at Jesmond Parish Church

The leadership of Jesmond church have for some time been speaking publicly about the need for new missionary Bishops in Western nations who can oversee new Anglican ministries in the Celtic model. The reasoning can be found in the statement from the 2017 Jesmond Conference, here.

Gafcon UK have been informed of the latest developments but cannot comment further at this stage.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, England / UK, Religion & Culture, South Africa

More on the Jesmond Parish Consecration (II)–A Christian Today Article

A conservative cleric in Newcastle has been consecrated a renegade bishop without the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury, his church has confirmed.

Rev Jonathan Pryke, of Jesmond Parish Church, is one of three rebel bishops to be appointed by conservatives concerned about a liberal drift in the Church of England over homosexuality.

In a secret ceremony last Tuesday, the presiding bishop of deeply conservative Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of South Africa (REACH-SA) consecrated Pryke, a statement confirmed.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, England / UK, Religion & Culture, South Africa

(AM) C of E reassessors use the BBC and the South African church to continue campaign

Many churches have been involved in wonderful work in ministering in fearful communities, caring for the suffering and the families of those killed by disease or violence, while at the same time (in the case of bible-based congregations), continuing to teach of the love of Christ, and following God’s design for celibate singleness and faithful marriage as the best way of avoiding HIV. Some churches have been brave enough to challenge, with the Gospel, the toxic culture of machismo which is partly responsible for the high levels of murder and sexual abuse. While of course there are church leaders and nominal Christians who live no differently to those in the communities around them, there are many thousands of godly, prayerful and compassionate men and women who understand that counter-cultural sexual purity and control of anger is not old fashioned prudishness but a literal lifesaver and a witness to God’s goodness.

This background, essential for understanding any discussion about sex in South Africa, did not feature in the BBC programme, which sought to give the impression that people with same sex attraction are uniquely vulnerable. While violence against gay people is appalling and unacceptable, it is sadly part of a culture where women are abused whether they are gay or not, and people are beaten up and murdered for being foreign, or in the wrong place at the wrong time, for having a phone, for looking at someone’s girlfriend, etc, etc. The Western concept of LGBT rights is simply inappropriate in such a context. The church should be speaking up publicly against all violence and abuse, and developing communities of peace, safety and tolerance (as is doing so in many places), not focusing on one particular minority.

Also, given the prevalence of heterosexual promiscuity in society and even in the church, which combined with the sexual abuse has contributed to the devastating spread of AIDS and family breakdown, what effect would an acceptance and celebration of same sex relationships have in the townships and across Africa as a whole? It would surely send the message that the church is controlled by white Western liberalism (not good for mission?); that the Bible is not reliable; and that only ”˜love’, not sexual self-control, is the concern of the church. If a same sex relationship is OK, people will ask, then why is adultery wrong?

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, - Anglican: Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Africa, Anthropology, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Media, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, South Africa, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Times Live) Archbishop Theo Makgoba calls all Anglicans to pray for South Africa

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba has called on the public to join him in a vigil for the country on the steps of St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town tomorrow”š Wednesday November 2”š from 1 to 2 pm. The theme of the vigil is “A lament for our beloved country”.

It will entail 45 minutes of silence”š followed by interfaith prayers and a commitment to ongoing prayers for South Africa for the next year.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Ethics / Moral Theology, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, South Africa, Spirituality/Prayer, Theology

”˜The truth will set us free’–South African Anglican archbishop backs Gordhan and Treasury

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of Cape Town penned an open letter to them “saying the vast majority of South Africans support their efforts to ensure that taxpayers’ money is spent for the benefit of all and not to enrich a few”.

It is not the first time Makgoba has backed Gordhan. In February”š he met with the minister before he delivered his Budget Speech.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Politics in General, South Africa, Theology

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Bernard Mizeki

Almighty and everlasting God, who didst enkindle the flame of thy love in the heart of thy holy martyr Bernard Mizeki: Grant to us, thy humble servants, a like faith and power of love, that we who rejoice in his triumph may profit by his example; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Church History, Missions, South Africa, Spirituality/Prayer

Tutu-van Furth–Anglican Church w/ a ”˜little divine intervention’ will embrace same-sex marriage

Mpho Tutu-van Furth had to give up her priest’s licence last month when she married a woman. But she believes the Anglican Church of Southern Africa will ”” with a little divine intervention ”” come to embrace same-sex marriages….

In May in Franschhoek”š Tutu married Professor Marcelina van Furth”š a paediatrician who researches infectious diseases at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam. The union had the blessing of her parents”š Archbishop Emeritus Desmond and Leah Tutu.

Van Furth is an atheist ”“ but this has not posed a problem. “It seems to work quite well”š” says Tutu-Van Furth. “I respect her atheism”š and she’s interested in Christianity. She comes to church with me”š sits in a pew”š listens to the teaching and asks me about it. She sinks into being a peaceful place and meditates while I pray”š and that’s also fine….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Africa, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Politics in General, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, South Africa, Theology

(BBC) Archbishop Tutu's daughter interviewed about her recent choice

Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s youngest daughter Mpho Tutu van Furth recently made public her same sex marriage to her partner Marceline van Furth. She is also a reverend in the Anglican Church, but revealing her sexuality forced her to relinquish her licence to carry out her duties as a priest…

Listen to it all (just under 4 minutes).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Africa, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Ethics / Moral Theology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, South Africa, Theology

Ian Paul–Putting the C of E at risk

The 2015 report (due out quite soon) will be much more specific about the particular operational issues, and lists

Failure to recruit sufficient new clergy and lay leaders
Failure of new initiatives to deliver church growth
Failure of safeguarding processes, and impact of national enquiries (such as the Goddard report)
Failure to gain support for the Renewal and Reform programme
Financial insolvency in a significant part of the church
IT capacity and security.
I wonder how that compares with your own list? I suspect most people would suggest that there is one very significant strategic risk for the church as a whole which isn’t covered by the above list of operational risks: the danger of schism over a major issue of belief or practice. Reading newspaper headlines, or attending to the internal workings of the Church, it would be hard not to notice that the debate on sexuality and its outcome is the ”˜major issue’ currently threatening the future of the C of E as we know it.

If that is the case, why would any diocesan bishop act in a way to exacerbate this risk? Yet in the last month, two appear to have done just that.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, - Anglican: Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecclesiology, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), South Africa, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Economist) Xenophobia in South Africa: Blood at the end of the rainbow

A street vendor from Mozambique, Emmanuel Sithole, lay begging for his life in a gutter as four men beat him and stabbed him in the heart with a long knife. Images of his murder have shaken South Africa, already reeling from a wave of attacks on foreigners, mostly poor migrants from the rest of Africa. Soldiers were deployed on April 21st to Alexandra, a Johannesburg township, and other flashpoints to quell the violence, though only after seven people had been killed. Thousands of fearful foreigners, many from Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, have sought refuge in makeshift camps. Others have returned home.

South Africa has experienced such horrors before. During widespread anti-foreign violence in 2008, 62 people were killed and some 100,000 displaced. Photographs of the murder of another Mozambican man, Ernesto Nhamuave, whom a jeering mob burned alive in a squatter camp, led to declarations that such atrocities would never happen again. Yet no one was charged in Mr Nhamuave’s death: the case was closed after a cursory police investigation apparently turned up no witnesses (who were easily found by journalists earlier this year). The latest violence flared up in the Durban area earlier this month after King Goodwill Zwelithini, the traditional leader of the Zulus, reportedly compared foreigners to lice and said that they should pack up and leave.

His comments poured fuel on an already-smouldering fire. Jean Pierre Misago, a researcher at the African Centre for Migration and Society in Johannesburg, estimates that at least 350 foreigners have been killed in xenophobic violence since 2008.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, Immigration, Law & Legal Issues, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, South Africa, Theology

(BBC) South Africa's Zuma vows to end attacks on migrants

South African President Jacob Zuma has visited a refugee camp in the port of Durban after a fresh outbreak of anti-foreigner violence.

Mr Zuma told those who had fled the violence that it went against South African values and he would bring it to an end.

But he was jeered by some in the crowd who accused him of acting too slowly.

At least six people have died in xenophobic attacks in Durban, with violence spreading to other areas.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Ethics / Moral Theology, Psychology, South Africa, Theology, Violence

PBS ' Religion and Ethics Newsweekly-Wounded (Anglican) Priest Michael Lapsley

Father Michael Lapsley is an Anglican priest who was sent to South Africa during the institutionalized racial segregation of apartheid. He became a chaplain to Nelson Mandela’s African National Congress and a target of the white supremacy government. One day Lapsley opened a package that turned out to be a bomb. He lost both hands and one eye in the attack on his life, but his faith survived. He now uses his wounds to connect with those who have experienced trauma and help them find healing.

Read or watch and listen to it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anthropology, Australia / NZ, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Care, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, South Africa, Theology

(Observer) Desmond Tutu: a dignified death is our right ”“ I am in favour of assisted dying

This takes me to the question of what does it mean to be alive. What constitutes quality of life and dignity when dying? These are big, important questions. I have come to realise that I do not want my life to be prolonged artificially. I think when you need machines to help you breathe, then you have to ask questions about the quality of life being experienced and about the way money is being spent. This may be hard for some people to consider.

But why is a life that is ending being prolonged? Why is money being spent in this way? It could be better spent on a mother giving birth to a baby, or an organ transplant needed by a young person. Money should be spent on those that are at the beginning or in full flow of their life. Of course, these are my personal opinions and not of my church.

What was done to Madiba (Nelson Mandela) was disgraceful. There was that occasion when Madiba was televised with political leaders, President Jacob Zuma and Cyril Ramaphosa. You could see Madiba was not fully there. He did not speak. He was not connecting. My friend was no longer himself. It was an affront to Madiba’s dignity.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Justin Welby, Africa, Aging / the Elderly, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), Death / Burial / Funerals, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Law & Legal Issues, Life Ethics, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, South Africa, Theology