Skip over navigation
Statement from the Primate of All Nigeria, Archbishop Peter J. Akinola
The confirmation of Gene Robinson's election by the House of Bishops (ECUSA), as the first actively gay bishop has brought much sadness and disappointment to us in the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion).
We are astonished that such a high level convention of ECUSA should conspire to turn their back on the clear teaching of the Bible on the matter of human sexuality. Even more shocking is the violation of their own constitution in which they claim to be in fellowship with churches "upholding and propagating the historic Faith and Order as set forth in the Book of Common Prayer." Yet at the time of testing, this has proved to be, for the present generation, no more than mere rhetoric. They have chosen the path of deviation from the "historic faith" once delivered to the saints.
Our position on this matter is already well known. We have taken this position prayerfully, being aware of the pain this will bring to all who understand the price some have had to pay to preserve the faith of our fathers. But more than our human pain is the anguish this must bring to the heart of the Lord of the Church and the setback to our witness as a Church before the watching world.
We applaud the admirable integrity and loyalty of those gallant 45 Bishops of ECUSA who have refused to succumb to the pressure for compromise. In the language of the Bible, they have refused to bow their knees to baal. We assure them, and all the faithful within ECUSA, of our unflinching solidarity and fullest cooperation. We shall continue to be in full communion with them and we will do all that is necessary to actualise this bond in practical terms.
As for ECUSA, the present development compels us to begin to think of the nature of our future relationship, which would be determined after the ongoing consultation with other Provinces and Primates.
Nevertheless, as things stand, a clear choice has been made for a Church that exists primarily in allegiance to the unbiblical departures and waywardness of our generation; a Church that enthrones the will of men over and above the authority of God and His revealed and written Word. Such a Church is bound to become a shrine for the worship of men rather than God. We cannot go on limping between two opinions.
May the Lord, who has promised to build His Church so that the gates of hell will not prevail against it, bless His Church in this dark hour.
Most Revd Peter J. Akinola, DD.
Primate of All Nigeria.
Date Created: 8/13/2003 6:59:00 PM