Wednesday, 23 October 2013

GAFCON 2013

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The Global Anglican Futures Conference (GAFCON - http://gafcon.org ) is currently happening in Kenya; and I find myself waiting with a mixture of hope and trepidation; because I suspect that these few days will determine whether anything of significant value can be salvaged from that wreck of corruption which is the Church of England.

Most of what is both good and hopeful (with possibilities of growth) in the Anglican communion is focused in GAFCON, as epitomized by its chairman (and the president of the current conference) the Archbishop of Kenya, Eliud Wabukala.

If you read some of the speeches, you will see that most are excellent; but be sure to leave-out the usual wicked-weaselling boiler-plate-bureaucratic speech by Archbishop Justin Welby; who was not actually at the conference but did his best to steal the wind and cast a dense pall of political correctness over the proceedings.

The fascinating political implication of GAFCON is that the only realistic hope of salvaging a Christian remnant from the Church of England is the swift development of a new Episcopal structure to sustain those few solidly-Christian churches that remain in the Church of England; a structure that would be administered from the 'Global South'; that is from the third world rather than Canterbury, York and London.

There is a sense of irony about the prospect - or rather just a hope - of England being evangelized by missionary activity and Episcopal oversight from the countries where a century ago we were sending missionaries; but there is no real debate about where the spiritual authority - the truest and most devout Christianity - lies in the Anglican communion; and there may still be a slender thread of hope for a part of the C of E, if administrative authority can be taken-away from the apostates, and restored to real Christian Bishops.

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