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Source: Rwanda News Angency
Date: August 14, 2007
The Anglican Church in Rwanda and Africa will not be bullied into keeping quiet about the non biblical behaviors of the American and European churches, a senior bishop has said.
Bishop John Rucahana - Anglican head of the Shyira Diocese said the current disagreements in the Anglican Church were caused by the ordination of the homosexual bishops by the American Episcopal Church. Rucahana said this was against the teachings of the holly bible.
The stalemate stems from an invitation to the Lambeth Conference 2008 from Archbishop Rowan Williams in which he invited one section of the bishops in Rwanda and left out others because apparently they do not have similar approaches to Anglican faith. Archbishop Williams is essentially the head of the worldwide Anglican Church.
The Lambeth Conference 2008 will take place on the campus of the University of Kent in Canterbury, from July 16 to August 4, 2008.
Mr. Williams wrote in the letter seen by RNA: "This is not a question of asking anyone to disassociate themselves at this stage from what have been described as the missionary initiatives of your Provinces. I appreciate that you may not be happy with these decisions, but I feel that as we approach a critical juncture of the life of the Communion, I must act in accordance to the clear guidance of the instruments of the Communion."
"It is them that abandoned the faith, the law and doctrine of the church. They also do not believe in the teachings of the bible", Bishop Rucahana said Tuesday in a lengthy interview on state radio.
"Their behaviours do not conform to the religious conduct of the Anglican church because it is them that ordained homosexuals as bishops not Africans".
Bishop Rucahana said the Anglican Church in Rwanda will not be pushed into adopting the satanic behaviour of the "whites because they are whites". He called on the other sects to conform to the faith teachings as the problem crosscuts to them as well.
As a response to the move by Archbishop Williams, the Episcopal Church of Rwanda hit back accusing Archbishop Williams of "divisive" leadership.
The Rwandan Anglican clergy though their head Bishop Emmanuel Kollin said such behaviour was "violating holy orders" and by also making the decision to "ordain and to consecrate practicing homosexuals".
They added, "We feel that the words of the Archbishop are tantamount to a threat, and we cannot accept this".
The bishops of the American Episcopal Church have accused African Anglican primates of trying to drag their Church back into "a time of colonialism".
They said in March that they would resist the primates' demand that they set up a new pastoral scheme with a "primatial vicar" to make a traditionalist enclave for antigay conservatives who reject the oversight of liberal bishops. They said that the scheme "violated" their canons, or Church law.
Although the 2.3 million American Episcopalians are few among the 77 million Anglicans worldwide, they are understood to finance up to one third of the Communion's total international budget.
In April 2004, Africa's Anglican archbishops vowed not to accept donations from Western churches that support the ordination of gay priests. This, despite the fact that the church in Africa depends almost entirely on funding from the West.
"The problem they have with the African believers is because we remained faithful to the biblical teachings and instead challenged them about their conduct. They had never been challenged by African believers", Bishop Rucahana said.
Date Created: 8/15/2007