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Bribery allegations false, Archbishop declares: Anglican Ink, November 13, 2012 November 14, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Ink, Corruption.
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The Most Rev. Onesphore Rwaje, Archbishop of Rwanda

Allegations the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Rwanda (PEAR) solicited a $250,000 gratuity from the Anglican Mission in America and its refusal led to the breach with the African church are baseless, church leaders tell Anglican Ink.

Rumors have circulated on the internet for the past few days accusing the Rwandan primate of graft. “I learned from an unimpeachable source today that Rwandan Archbishop Rwaje had asked Bishop Chuck Murphy for $250,000 to build a home,” one message shared on a popular Anglican news portal alleged.

Speculation attached to the rumor said the refusal of Bishop Murphy to agree to the shakedown  might have been behind his “downfall from Rwanda.”

Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje of Rwanda told Anglican Ink the accusations were “not true.”

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

All Saints Pawleys Island votes to join the ACNA: Anglican Ink, November 9, 2012 November 9, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Ink.
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All Saints Pawleys Island

Anglican Mission in America has voted to join the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA).

At a parish meeting on 5 Nov 2012, All Saints Church in Pawleys Island, South Carolina was asked to give its support to one of two propositions. Proposal 1 would affiliate the historic congregation with the ACNA, while proposal 2 would align the church with the Anglican Mission in America’s (AMiA) Society for Mission and Apostolic Works.

Parish by laws required 51 per cent approval for a change in affiliation or 316 votes.  With a quorum present, proposal 1 received 322 votes and proposal 2 received 229 votes.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

AMiA’s Uganda option closes: Anglican Ink, August 22, 2012 August 22, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Ink, Church of the Province of Uganda.
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Bishop Nathan Kyamanywa

The Anglican Mission in America (AMiA)’s Society for Mission and Apostolic has lost one of its two ecclesial sponsors.  In a 22 August 2012 statement given to Anglican Ink, the Church of Uganda said the canonical cover offered by one of its bishops to clergy who wish to affiliate with the society under the leadership of Bishop Chuck Murphy had been withdrawn.

Earlier this month clergy who had been affiliated with the AMiA received a letter from its headquarters in Pawleys Island, South Carolina asking that they choose one of two canonical jurisdictions.  Last month Bishop Murphy, accompanied by his assistant the Rev. Canon Kevin Donlan, traveled to Africa to arrange alternative provincial oversight in light of the severance of relations with the Anglican Province of Rwanda and the end to the temporary oversight provided by the Anglican Province of the Congo.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 48, August 18, 2012 August 18, 2012

Posted by geoconger in 77th General Convention, AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican.TV, Archbishop of Canterbury, Archbishop of York, Canon Law, Church of England, Church of the Province of Uganda, Church of the Province of West Africa, South Carolina.
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Not a week goes by (even in August) when the Unscripted team can’t dig up some interesting news. Kevin and George discuss the “new thang” with AMiA and the turmoil at Pawley’s Island. They also reveal some Crown Commission secrets, Anglican Job Postings and Affinity Dioceses. Peter Ould talks about an Englishman trying to sell more books and Allan gives some interesting history about leaving and staying in TEC at the same time.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 47, August 4, 2012. August 4, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Ordinariate, Anglican.TV, Church of England, Georgia, South Carolina.
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The Diocese of South Carolina is in a 25 day waiting period before Bishop Lawrence makes a decision on the way forward following the aftermath of General Convention. Plus a church from Pawleys Island and Moultrie Georgia makes plans to move foreword. Kevin and George also discuss Archbishops of Canterbury news and the Society of Bishop Murphy. The show closes with Kevin and George addressing the international boycott of Anglican Unscripted and what you can do to help.

Both Peter and Allan have the week off, but the news and a teaser continue on. Paypal donations to anglicantv@gmail.com – comments to anglicanunscripted@gmail.com – twitter #AU47

All Saints Pawleys Island may go ACNA: Anglican Ink, July 30, 2012 July 31, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Ink.
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The flagship parish of the Anglican Mission in America – All Saints Pawleys Island – is set to vote at a special parish meeting this fall on its rector’s proposal the congregation join the Anglican Church in North America.

The Rev. Robert L. Grafe, Jr.,  rector of the founding parish of the AMiA, told Anglican Ink his congregation was entering a “season of prayer and discernment.”

He noted that a “change in affiliation requires an amendment to our by-laws and a parish vote,” which could take place later this year.

In a 27 July 2012 letter to the congregation, Mr. Grafe wrote that in the wake of the December split within the AMiA “it became clear that there would be other Anglican options for affiliation to consider.”

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Retired bishops named in UN report on Congo civil war: The Church of England Newspaper, July 22, p 6. July 23, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Church of England Newspaper, Politics.
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A report submitted to the United Nation’s Security Council claims two retired Anglican bishops have served as go-betweens for the Rwandan government and the Congolese rebel group M23.

In a report dated 26 June 2012, the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo reported that Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini and Bishop John Rucyahana had facilitated talks between the government and rebel leaders.

The Group of Experts reported that the Rwandan Government had broken the arms embargo by providing “material and financial support to armed groups operating in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, including the recently established M23, in contravention of paragraph 1 of Security Council resolution 1807 (2008).”

The 48 page report detailed numerous violations of the U.N. embargo citing.  It accused the Rwandan Government of providing “Direct assistance in the creation of M23 through the transport of weapons and soldiers through Rwandan territory; Recruitment of Rwandan youth and demobilized ex-combatants as well as Congolese refugees for M23; Provision of weapons and ammunition to M23; Mobilization and lobbying of Congolese political and financial leaders for the benefit of M23; Direct Rwandan Defence Forces (RDF) interventions into Congolese territory to reinforce M23; Support to several other armed groups as well as Forces armées de la République démocratique du Congo (FARDC) mutinies in the eastern Congo; Violation of the assets freeze and travel ban through supporting sanctioned individuals.”

The Group of Experts stated two Anglican bishops had convened a meeting organized by the Rwandan Defence Forces for leaders of the CNDP – the Congrès national pour la défense du peuple, CNDP  is a political armed militia established by Laurent Nkunda in the Kivu region in 2006 that under the terms of the recent peace accord is to be integrated into the Congolese army.  The Group of Experts further identified the two bishops as “senior members” of Rwanda’s ruling government party.

Paragraph 29 of the report stated in part:

“Another similar M23 meeting with Rwandan authorities took place on 26 May 2012 in Ruhengeri, Rwanda, at Hotel Ishema. According to intelligence sources and to politicians with close ties to Kigali, the RDF organized the meeting for CNDP politicians, which was chaired by Bishops John Rucyahana and Coline, both senior RPF party leaders. The aim of the meeting was to convey the message that the Rwandan Government supports M23 politically and militarily. All Rwandophone politicians and officers were instructed to join M23, or otherwise leave the Kivus. In particular, CNDP politicians have been asked to resign from the North Kivu Governorate and to withdraw from the Presidential Majority.”

On 27 June the Rwandan Foreign Minister refuted the assertions of collusion between her government and Congolese rebel groups.  Louise Mushikiwabo said that it was deeply regrettable that the “media frenzy over Rwanda’s alleged involvement in the DRC”  had forced the “hasty publication of an interim report without giving the government the opportunity to analyse its contents and respond in a systematic fashion.”

“This is a one-sided preliminary document based on partial findings and is still subject to verification,” she said, adding the “UN Group of Experts has accepted our invitation to Kigali to do what should have been done before; carry out relevant consultations and obtain the facts. We intend to provide factual evidence that the charges against Rwanda are false. These, as well as Rwanda’s own allegations, will hopefully be reflected in the final UN report due in November.”

Bishops Rucyahana and Kolini did not respond to our email requests for comments or clarification to the claims made in the Group of Experts report.  However, the Anglican Church of Rwanda (PEAR) told The Church of England Newspaper that it was not involved, nor aware of the incidents cited in the report.  PEAR was a church for all the people of Rwanda, Tutsis and Hutus, a spokesman said and was committed to staying out of politics.  To link the church with state politics was “untrue” and “unfair”.

Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje said: “We were not aware of the UN report or any involvement of our retired Bishops as contained in the report. PEAR is in the Proclamation of the Gospel and not in politics between two countries or simply put in politics. We are not able to comment on the report or the names therein.”

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 43, June 18, 2012 June 18, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Covenant, Anglican.TV, Canon Law, Church of England, Church of Ireland, Property Litigation, Scottish Episcopal Church.
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After a one week hiatus George and Kevin return. Allan Haley brings breaking news from the Supreme Court concerning TEC churches and the Dennis Canon. Your hosts talk about their adventures at the Anglican Church in North America’s Assembly, including the topic everyone was ‘not’ talking about. David Ould brings news from Australia and England while his twin brother Peter is enjoying a vacation with is family at Eurodisney.

2011 a ‘challenge’ for the ACNA, Archbishop reports: Anglican Ink, June 7, 2012 June 7, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Ink.
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Archbishop Duncan addressing the ACNA provincial council

The year 2011 could have been the Anglican Church in North America’s annus horribilis, Archbishop Robert Duncan told the bishop and delegates attending its fourth provincial council meeting at the Ridgecrest Conference Center in Western North Carolina on 6 June 2012.

But at year’s end the ACNA was the stronger for its engagement with the chaos surrounding the collapse of the Anglican Mission in America. “The only way to explain what has happened is to speak of God’s hand and God’s favor” the archbishop said in his presidential address.

While heavy fog greeted the bishops and council members at their mountain retreat, grey skies were not evident inside the council chamber. Delegates told Anglican Ink they were upbeat and hopeful for the future of the province-in-waiting of the Anglican Communion – a message shared by Archbishop Duncan in his state of the church address.

The archbishop opened his address by noting that although the past year had been a “challenge,” “greater unity globally has also been achieved.”

The ACNA’s relationship with the Church of Rwanda “has never been closer” he said, and noted the FCA primates council “has also gone far deeper in relationship because of the AMiA crisis and we are far more committed to one another personally than ever before.”

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 39, May 11, 2012 May 11, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican.TV, Church of Ireland, Property Litigation, The Episcopal Church.
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Kevin and George are at it again. This week they tackle the tough topic of people in purple, The Anglican Mission in America, Same Sex Marriage, and communication in in the church. Peter has breaking news from Ireland and AS Haley brings legal news from Orange Beach California. Comments to AnglicanUnscripted@gmail.com and twitter #au39

Bishop Todd Hunter joins the ACNA: Anglican Ink, May 8, 2012 May 8, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Church of the Congo, Anglican Ink.
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Bishop Todd Hunter

Bishop Todd Hunter of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) has been received by the Anglican Church in North America and will serve as an assistant bishop in the office of the primate, the Most Rev. Robert Duncan.

On 4 May 2012 the California-based bishop held a conference call with Archbishop Duncan, Bishop Chuck Murphy of the AMiA, and Bishop Terrell Glenn of PEAR-USA/ACNA to discuss his future plans.

Bishop Hunter stated that he had a “warm and collegial conversations” with the three bishops and “articulated for each of them my vision of C4SO becoming a servant to all the various Anglican entities within North America. C4SO will happily plant churches in partnership with PEARUSA, TheAm and the ACNA.”

C4SO – Churches for the Sake of Others – is a church planting initiative run by Bishop Hunter that will now move under the ecclesial oversight of the ACNA.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 38, May 5, 2012 May 6, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican.TV, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England, Church of Ireland, Texas, The Episcopal Church.
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The Anglican Four have more news for you. Kevin and George bring you Today-in-History, More of The AMiA breakdown, Erastian Texans, picking Canterbury, and the weather for Ireland is spring. Peter breaks down behind-the-scenes GAFCON and AS Haley has breaking news from Christ Church, Savannah. Oh… and there is a surprise Guest this week.

Statement from the Chairman of the AMiA on the withdrawal of Archbishop Wabukala: Anglican Ink, May 5, 2012 May 6, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Ink.
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The Chairman of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) has given the following statement to Anglican Ink in response to our query concerning the withdrawal of Archbiship Eliud Wabukala’s patronage.

“I received word this morning via email that Archbishop Eliud Wabukala has withdrawn from the College of Consultors for the Anglican Mission.  …..

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Wabukala withdraws support from AMiA: Anglican Ink, May 5, 2012 May 5, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Kenya, Anglican Ink.
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The Archbishop of Kenya has withdrawn from the Anglican Mission in America’s (AMiA) College of Consultors.  Sources within the AMiA and in the Anglican Church of Kenya tell Anglican InkArchbishop Eliud Wabukala has written to Bishop Chuck Murphy withdrawing his patronage from the organization.

Last week Bishop Murphy announced that five primates – Archbishop Henri Isingoma of the Congo, Archbishop Eliud Wabukala of Kenya, and retired archbishops Emmanuel Kolini, Yong Ping Chung and Moses Tay – had agreed to provide archiepiscopal oversight for the AMiA as it reconstitutes itself as a mission society.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Congo to give a temporary home to the AMiA: The Church of England Newspaper, April 29, 2012 p 7 May 4, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Church of the Congo, Church of England Newspaper.
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Archbishop Henri Isingoma

The Anglican Province of the Congo will give the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) a temporary refuge while it searches for an ecclesiastical home, the Primate of the Congo Archbishop Henri Isingoma.

In an email to the Church of England Newspaper, the Congolese archbishop stated “we have finally agreed to temporarily welcome AMiA in our Province as a result of a fruitful discussion as a first step of our ongoing dialogue.”

He added that the Congo was also rethinking the Anglican Covenant and Windsor Report, moving on from its January 2012 position.

The province would be “silent until the next Provincial Assembly scheduled for June 2012” on the Covenant, the archbishop said, noting “we appreciate the role played by the Windsor Report and the Anglican Covenant as reliable ways that helped the Anglican Communion to resist to the division for a long time but at the moment, looking at the way the crisis is deepening, I think they seem to gradually lose ground for a secure future of an effective communion among Anglicans worldwide,” the archbishop said.

On 13 April 2012 Bishop Chuck Murphy announced the AMiA had been received by the Congo.  The CEN has since been able to confirm the move, but the 6 April 2012 invitation given to the AMiA set a number of conditions for the breakaway American group.

The oversight offered by the Congo would be temporary, and with the understanding that the “provisional attachment of your Mission to the Province of the Anglican Church of Congo will not in any way break its long date relationship with the sister-Province of Rwanda and other missionary agencies in the USA …”

The AMiA must also engage in a “reconciliation process” with “other entities where our Province intends to play a major role.”

Archbishop Isingoma told CEN “we remain aware that at the beginning of their mission there were some uncontrolled and not careful enough actions and feelings contrary to the Anglican tradition.”

However, “this seems to have tremendously improved with time and calls out for them to be recognized as mission partners.  That is why, by compassion and hoping that some possible positive results, even in the far future, will come out from different dialogue processes, we couldn’t appreciate the rejection of their church mission action as expressed in their petition. We really felt unkind not only to welcome them at a time of distress in order to offer to them more opportunities to continue with the dialogue within the wide Anglican Communion,” the archbishop said.

“We agree to welcome you in our Province as you request in your petition while you move on in normalizing your position as a plausible Anglican missionary society,” the archbishop told the AMiA said.  The “nature and modality” of the transfer will be discussed at a forthcoming meeting in London, he added.

ACNA receives two AMiA bishops: Anglican Ink, April 30, 2012. May 1, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Ink.
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Bishop Foley Beach

The Anglican Church of North America (ACNA) has received two bishops from the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) as honorary temporary assistant bishops.

The Rt. Rev. T.J. Johnston will serve as an assistant bishop to the Rt. Rev. Foley Beach of the Anglican Diocese of the South and the Rt. Rev. John Miller will serve as an assistant bishop to the Rt. Rev. Neil Lebahr of the Gulf Atlantic Diocese, Anglican Ink has learned.

A memorandum of understanding dated 18 April 2012 endorsed by Bishops Johnson and Miller and by Bishop Leonard Riches and Charlie Masters on behalf of the ACNA states the agreement serves to “provide a temporary jurisdictional connection” and will last for 180 days, with an interim review at the 90 day mark.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

AMiA heading back to Africa: The Church of England Newspaper, April 22, 2012, p 5. April 26, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Church of England Newspaper.
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The leader of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) reports that his group has moved under the oversight of the Anglican Church of the Congo.

“This week, I received an official letter from Archbishop Henri Isingoma of the Anglican Church of the Congo, receiving me as a Bishop of the House of Bishops in his Province and offering us a new canonical residence,” Bishop Chuck Murphy reported to his followers on 13 April 2012.

However The Church of England Newspaper has not been able to confirm the veracity of Bishop Murphy’s claims with Archbishop Henry Isingoma of the Congo, nor has the AMiA released a copy of the letter from Kinshasa cited in its announcement.

The terms of the arrangement have not yet been disclosed however in a 10 April letter the Rwandan House of Bishops stated it would allow AMiA clergy who wished to be released from their oversight to transfer to another province of the Anglican Communion.

The new arrangement with the Congo came “in response to a recent letter from Archbishop Rwaje asking our bishops to translate to another Anglican jurisdiction by the end of this month, I had earlier requested that he send my letters dimissory to the Province of the Congo,” Bishop Murphy said.

The move back to Africa by the AMiA came as a surprise to the ACNA, CEN was told, as the organization was in talks with the American conservative Anglican province to move under its wing.  Nor were the leaders of the Gafcon movement aware of the plans, CEN has learned.

In his 5 Dec 2011 letter to Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje of Rwanda informing him of his resignation Bishop Murphy wrote that he had been led by the Holy Spirit to believe it was time for the AMiA to withdraw from African oversight.

Citing Exodus 1:8, Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph; Bishop Murphy wrote: “Clearly, with an altogether new and different leadership in place in our African home of refuge and sojourn, the Anglican Mission, like the people of God earlier in Exodus, now finds itself in a very new and different situation. The result, as we saw in the story of Exodus, is that God’s sovereign hand which had led His people into Africa (Egypt) in the earlier Book of Genesis, then took a dramatic turn in the Book of Exodus instructing His people that it was now time for them to leave Africa.”
It was “clear” he said, that Africa “could no longer be viewed as their lasting home.”

The AMiA has declined to respond to questions about their move back to Africa or the agreements reached with the Congolese church.

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Congo to give a temporary home to the AMiA: Anglican Ink, April 16, 2012 April 17, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of the Congo, Anglican Ink.
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Archbishop Henri Isingoma

The Anglican Province of the Congo has given the Anglican Mission in America a temporary home while it seeks to find a permanent place within the Anglican Communion.

In a statement released on 13 April 2012, the chairman of the AMiA, Bishop Chuck Murphy told supporters he had received “an official letter from Archbishop Henri Isingoma of the Anglican Church of the Congo, receiving me as a Bishop of the House of Bishops in his Province and offering us a new canonical residence.”

The move to the Congo, Bishop Murphy wrote, came in response to a “recent letter from Archbishop Rwaje asking our bishops to translate to another Anglican jurisdiction by the end of this month.” On 2 April the primate of the Anglican Province of Rwanda (PEAR), Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje, asked the AMiA bishops who had resigned to “declare the ecclesiastical jurisdiction to which they wish to be translated within the next few weeks.” PEAR clergy in America were asked to state their intentions by August as to whether they wished to remain in Rwanda, transfer to the ACNA or to another Anglican province.

Bishop Murphy stated the AMiA would continue to develop its particular ecclesiology under the cover of the Congo. “As we continue to transition toward a Mission Society with oversight provided by a College of Consultors, we remain committed to the multi-jurisdictional model that launched the Anglican Mission in Singapore,” he said, adding that “toward that end, conversations with other jurisdictions including the Anglican Church in North America will continue.”

In its 6 April 2012 April to the AMiA, Archbishop Henri Isingoma stated the province would give it temporary ecclesial oversight. The archbishop wrote that the Congo was mindful of the AMiA’s desire to remain in the Anglican Communion “in spite of the differences of opinion among its members and the current acute crisis it undergoes.”

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 36, April 16, 2012 April 16, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Australia, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Church of the Congo, Anglican.TV, Church in Wales, Property Litigation, Wicca/Druidism.
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Back from Holy Week your Host Kevin and George discuss AMiA, the Occult, and the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church. David Ould joins us this week to talk about Clergy Protocol in the Australian Church and Dean Munday tackles Easter (the real one). Alan Haley talks about San Joaquin and the battle for paper documents.

Rwanda and AMiA to go their separate ways: The Church of England Newspaper, April 6, 2012 p 7. April 11, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Church of England Newspaper.
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Bishop Chuck Murphy

The Archbishop of Kenya reports that attempts to forge a compromise between the bishops of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) and the Church of Rwanda have failed.  In a statement released on 29 March 2012, Archbishop Eliud Wabukala stated that each side wishes the other well as they pursue new opportunities in ministry.

The severing of formal ties between the AMiA and Rwanda after 12 years ends the first sustained “cross border” jurisdictional violation criticized by the Windsor Report – leaving the Church of Nigeria with the only formal overseas-led jurisdiction in North America.

On 13 March 2012 Bishop Chuck Murphy, Bishop John Miller and Canon Mike Murphy of the AMiA, along with the retired primates of Rwanda and South East Asia, Archbishops Emmanuel Kolini and Yong Ping Chung with the Primate of Rwanda, Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje and Bishop Laurent Mbanda in Johannesburg to “facilitate relational reconciliation,” a statement from the AMiA said.

The Johannesburg meeting follows upon a January meeting in Nairobi also hosted by Archbishop Wabukala that sought to find a way forward in the rupture between the AMiA’s bishops and the Church of Rwanda.  Last year all but two of the AMiA’s bishops quit the African church after the Rwandan House of Bishops pushed for greater financial and organizational accountability of the South Carolina-based jurisdiction.

The split has fractured the AMiA’s 150 congregations.  While no numbers have been released by the AMiA, a majority of its congregations appear to have left Bishop Murphy’s oversight—including Bishop Murphy’s former parish and the AMiA’s headquarters, All Saints Church in Pawleys Island, South Carolina.

One faction appears set to join the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), a second group has pledged its loyalty to the Church of Rwanda but will seek to operate under the oversight of the ACNA, while a third remains with Bishop Murphy and his bishops.  Negotiations to find an accommodation are currently underway between the Murphy faction and the ACNA, however the terms publicly set by Archbishop Duncan include reconciliation between Rwanda and the Murphy group.

In his letter from Johannesburg, Archbishop Wabukala said the two sides stated that they had “done the best” to resolve the situation.  However, “we mutually agree to release each other to develop our God-given ministries for the advancement of His Kingdom.”

The parties further agreed not to disparage each other.  “We will honor all parties involved by promising not to engage in derogatory or judgmental communication,” the statement said.

The AMiA statement said “Bishop Murphy expressed deep gratitude to Archbishop Wabukala for his leadership and thanksgiving for this new beginning for the Anglican Mission.”  A member of the Rwandan House of Bishops contacted by the Church of England Newspaper stated his church would not comment at this time, noting the communiqué spoke for itself.

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 35, April 2, 2012 April 2, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Albany, AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, Property Litigation.
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Your Host Kevin and George talk about AMiA (then and now), DEPO in Albany, and the role of the Bishop in the Church. Allan Haley discusses last minute changes in the Virginia Court case and Obamacare’s scary week at the US Supreme Court. You can tweet your comments to #AU35 or email us at anglicanunscripted@gmail.com — and as always we have saved the best for last.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 31: March 6, 2012 March 6, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV.
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From Natural Disasters to International turmoil your Anglican Unscripted hosts Kevin and George cover it all. There is also updated AMiA and PEARUSA News and AS Haley reflects on what happens when you lose in court. This episode starts with a great adventure in Texas and finishes with a new segment called Mailbag. Please reply to anglicanunscripted@gmail.com.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 29 February 24, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, Church of England.
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This week Kevin and George discuss completely outdated materials that were Indispensable 10 years ago. They also banter about Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and her role in Christian England. Also in Episode 29 your hosts delve into the differences between 815 and ACNA and provide updated announcement from AMiA Bishops and PEARUSA. After commemorating Whitney Houston and a word from Bishop Nazir-Ail on the Arab Spring your host seek help from the Unscripted viewing Audience.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 28: February 13, 2012 February 13, 2012

Posted by geoconger in Albany, AMiA, Anglican.TV, CAPA, Church of England, Church of South India, Civil Rights, Development/Economics/Govt Finances, Women Priests.
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This week Kevin and George take on the year 1662 and the missing 2500 Anglican Clergy. Also, your hosts talk about CAPA and DEPO and how they are relevant or no longer relevant today. Peter Ould covers last weeks events in the Church of England. AS Haley and Kevin discuss Obamacare and the 13th Chime of the Clock. Oh… and how many AMiA parishes are moving to PEAR or ACNA?

Congo not backing the AMiA: The Church of England Newspaper, February 3, 2012 p 6. February 10, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Church of the Congo, Anglican Covenant, Church of England Newspaper.
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Archbishop Henri Isingoma of the Congo

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Claims the Anglican Mission in America has been given a home in the Anglican Church of the Congo are false, the Primate of the Congolese church, Archbishop Henri Isingoma of Kinshasa tells The Church of England Newspaper.

The Anglican Church of the Congo plans to endorse the Anglican Covenant at its forthcoming general assembly, the archbishop said, and would not violate the recommendations of the Windsor Continuation Group and initiate a cross border intervention in the jurisdiction of another Anglican province.

At its Winter Conference in Houston, Texas on 12 January 2012 retired Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini of Rwanda, acting under the authority of the Province of the Congo, ordained four deacons and a priest to serve for the AMiA, participants at the conference were told.

Mid-level sources within the AMiA have also told CEN that they had been briefed by their leaders that the former Rwandan mission in the U.S. would be taken under the wing of the Congo.  In December, the chairman of the AMiA, Bishop Chuck Murphy and all but two of his assistant bishops resigned from the Rwandan House of Bishops in a dispute over financial transparency and tightened oversight.

However, when queried by CEN, Archbishop Isingoma stated he was unaware of any Congolese move to take over the AMiA from Rwanda.  The archbishop and the Congolese House of Bishops “have never received or approved a special partnership with AMiA. I am very surprised to hear that we are sponsoring AMIA actions.”

The archbishop speculated that this “could be a plan of the former Archbishop of Rwanda who has a natural and historical liaison with Congo, but he has never expressed that in any way to me or to other bishops of the Anglican Congo.”

“The Anglican Church of Congo is still in the Anglican Communion; it stands on the biblical foundation teachings and until now, it has never think operating against the Anglican Communion tradition,” the archbishop said.

“We are planning to meet together” soon as a “provincial assembly” in the Congo, the archbishop said, “and at the same time the bishops’ house meeting will be held. So, among many other issues we hope to get a common conclusion about the Anglican Covenant.”

The AMiA declined to respond to our queries as of our going to press with this story.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 27, February 6, 2012 February 7, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of the Congo, Anglican.TV, Church of Nigeria, Property Litigation, The Episcopal Church.
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Kevin and George reveal breaking news from the Diocese of Central Florida and Bishop-Elect Brewer. They also clarify an Anglican Ink report on AMiA’s Winter Conferences Ordinations. AS Haley discusses the horrible witness TEC is showing the world through the US Legal system. And we discuss the violence in Nigeria and show comments from Archbishop Ben Kwashi from Mere Anglicanism 2012. And there may be some behind the scene footage after the credits again.

Anglican Unscripted: February 1, 2012 February 3, 2012

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Your intrepid hosts discuss the troubles with the Anglican Ordinariate of late. They also give some commentary on Bishop Lawrence’s address on the Future of Anglicanism from the Mere Anglicanism Conference last week. Allan discusses the current budget struggle between Bishop Sauls, Dr. Jefferts-Schori and Bonnie Anderson. And Peter Ould ponders a Church/State split in England.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 25: January 24, 2012 January 27, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of North America, Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Anglican Communion, Anglican.TV, Archbishop of Canterbury.
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Anglican Unscripted.

Not sure how to translate English to American? Kevin and George offer their years of experience in interpreting MISC 1011. They also take a gander at the news of AMiA, PEAR, and Moving Forward. And then there is that History thing.

AMiA break with Rwanda and Anglicanism complete: The Church of England Newspaper, January 20, 2012, p 7. January 20, 2012

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Bishop Chuck Murphy

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Bishop Chuck Murphy along with the other former bishops of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) have rejected the protocol for reconciliation with the Church of Rwanda brokered by the Archbishop of Kenya at the 4 January 2012 meeting in Nairobi.

Speaking at a conference in Houston this week, Bishop Murphy reiterated his plans to form a mission society with an international focus from the remnants loyal to him within the former AMiA.  The decision to repudiate ties with Rwanda severs the last link to the Anglican Communion for Bishop Murphy and his faction within the AMiA.

Bishop Phillip Jones, one of the resigned suffragan bishops told the Houston Conference, the new group no longer sought to be Anglican or to work within the confines of the Anglican tradition.  The Murphy group wanted to be attached to some wider organization, but in its current form it was a non-institutional entity with a global focus, that did not need to be Anglican, Bishop Jones said according to those present at the meeting.

On 17 January 2012, Archbishop Eliud Wabukala released a letter summarizing the 4 Jan meeting in Nairobi.  Present at the gathering were Bishop Murphy and Bishop John Miller from the U.S., Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje and Bishop Laurent Mbanda from Rwanda, Archbishop Ikechi Nwosu from the Church of Nigeria, Archbishop Wabukala from the Anglican Church of Kenya and four other Kenyan bishops.

Archbishop Wabukala opened the meeting by stating his hope that the parties could be reconciled.  The statement noted that Bishop Murphy “began by expressing his profound regret for the broken relationship and stressed his commitment to lead AMiA as a single-minded mission agency. “

He added that he had been “deeply distressed by the public accusations” leveled against him, but remained “determined” to carry on the work he began in 2000.

Archbishop Rwaje “acknowledged his deep distress at the broken relationships” and lauded the work of the AMiA over the past 12 years.  However, he was perturbed by the “continuing role” played by retired Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, the “lack of financial transparency and the recently announced plans to separate from the Church of Rwanda and function independently without adequate prayer or consultation.”

The Kenyan archbishop reported that after lengthy discussion the parties agreed that “forgiveness should come from both sides of the divide,” and that Rwanda would “stop looking at AMiA‘s mistakes,” wiping the slate clean. Both parties would also “start the process of forgiveness” and acknowledge the wrongs “between them.”

The agreement also called for the retired archbishops who had been supporting Bishop Murphy to work the “incumbent Archbishop of Rwanda” and for the retired archbishops to acknowledge the “ecclesiastical authority” of Archbishop Rwaje.

The Murphy faction of the AMiA “agreed that they remain canonically under the Church of Rwanda” and would put on hold for six months “plans for restructuring” the organization.

The next step would be for the two leaders to work with their bishops to “begin the work of reconciliation between both groups.”

However, while Bishop Murphy has said the work of reconciliation is continuing, the wider agreement appears ready to collapse as Bishop Murphy told those attending his Winter Conference that they would not accept the authority or directions of Rwanda, sources attending the Houston conference told The Church of England Newspaper.

Anglican Unscripted, January 18, 2012 January 19, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV.
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Kevin and George bring news and opinion about all things Anglican. Which of course has become a very dynamic vivid church — blessed by God in this Century.

Anglican Unscripted Episode 23, January 9, 2012 January 9, 2012

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, Church of Nigeria, Popular Culture.
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Kevin and George deliver news and commentary on a possible civil war in Nigeria and the latest news (and commentary) from PEAR and the Anglican Mission in America. Allan Haley talks about last years news and the good news of 2012. oh… and then there is that tattoo story….

Make or break meeting in Nairobi for the AMiA: Anglican Ink, January 4, 2012 January 4, 2012

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Bishop Chuck Murphy

The leader of the Anglican Mission in America, Bishop Chuck Murphy, will meet with the Primate of Rwanda today to seek a resolution to the split that has seen nine AMiA bishops quit the province and the Anglican Communion.

The Archbishop of Kenya, Dr. Eliud Wabukhala will host the 4 Jan 2012 meeting between Bishop Murphy and Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje in Nairobi.  Other African and North American church leaders are expected to attend the meeting as well.

Last month Bishop Murphy stated he would travel to London to meet with retired Archbishops Emmanuel Kolini, Moses Tay and Yong Ping Chung to begin the work of finding a new provincial sponsor for the AMiA.

A statement released after the 12-14 December meeting omitted mention of a new home.  It did affirm, however, the retired archbishops’ continued support for the missionary society concept advocated by Bishop Murphy.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

AMiA bishops quit Rwanda: The Church of England Newspaper, December 16, 2011 p 6. December 20, 2011

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First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

The American bishops of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) have quit the Church of the Anglican Province of Rwanda (PEAR), rejecting its discipline and oversight.

In a letter dated 5 Dec 2011, Bishop Chuck Murphy announced that the Lord “is now doing” a “new thing” and that he and all but two of the AMiA’s bishops were withdrawing from PEAR.

It is unlikely the bulk of the AMiA’s 152 congregations and its clergy will follow the bishops out of the church.  On 9 Dec Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje appointed the two loyal American bishops, the Rt. Rev. Thad Barnum and the Rt. Rev. Terrell Glenn, to oversee those who wish to remain within the Anglican Communion.

In letter dated 30 Nov Archbishop Rwaje chastised Bishop Murphy for disobedience, writing: “you have constantly disregarded the decisions and counsels of the House of Bishops” and have “misused the authority given to you by the Archbishop in advancing your new missionary society interests.”

At the Sept House of Bishops meeting, Bishop Murphy proposed changing the oversight of the AMiA from PEAR to a council of three archbishops that he would select.  The Rwandans objected to this plan and directed him to halt work until the bishops were of one mind.  However, Bishop Murphy carried on with the work announcing that the proposal would be presented to the 21 Dec meeting of the PEAR bishops for approval.

The PEAR bishops also requested a detailed accounting of funds sent to Rwanda as a tithe of the AMiA’s income after reports reached them that portions of the tithe were being spent on Rwandan related projects that had not been approved by the province.

The AMiA has responded that those portions of the funds not contributed directly to the PEAR central fund had been spent on projects authorized by Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini.   A summary was provided by the AMiA after the split, but no formal accounting of the funds has yet appeared.

However, the PEAR canons do not allow the archbishop to approve off the books transactions.  Title IV Article 17 vests control of “all accounts” of the province with three commissioners elected by the synod.”

Title I.6.10 of the Rwandan canons further obligates Bishop Murphy to “make a report” to the primate on the AMiA’s status “according to the manner established by the House of Bishops or Provincial Synod of the Province.”  His failure to comply violated the canons and was an act of disobedience the Rwandan bishops argued.

In his letter of resignation, Bishop Murphy said the AMiA was under no obligation to PEAR as there was “no covenant from the Anglican Mission to the Province.” He enumerated several areas of displeasure with the conduct of the archbishop, and added that he had come to the belief that it was God’s plan for the AMiA to quit the Anglican Communion and venture out on its own.

“I now see a parallel between the Exodus story and the present situation” with Rwanda and the AMiA.

“Things have now been made very clear to me, and I am thankful for the clarity that I now have,” he wrote, adding that “we actually see the Lord’s hand in all of this, and we are, therefore, at peace with this change and with this new reality.”

According to a statement released on behalf of the faction allied with Rwanda, the resignation will not affect the AMiA’s churches or clergy.

It is “neither an ordaining body nor a place of canonical residence. The orders of AMiA clergy are held in Rwanda. Likewise, all congregations affiliated with AMiA are resident in Rwanda.”

“The bishops who resigned from Rwandan oversight no longer have any authority over churches and clergy which are canonically resident in Rwanda. Clergy and churches may choose to disaffiliate with the Church of Rwanda, just as the resigning bishops did. But unless they do so, they remain under the oversight and spiritual care of Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje,” the statement said.

Anglican Unscripted, December 12, 2011 December 13, 2011

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Kevin and George discuss the interesting responses coming from South Carolina, TECs meddling into the Anglican Ordinariate, and your Hosts briefly talk about the situation with AMiA and the Province of Rwanda.

Bishop Murphy under threat of discipline: The Church of England Newspaper, December 9, 2011 p 7. December 12, 2011

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Bishop Chuck Murphy - Photo: AMiA

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

The head of the Anglican Mission in America has been threatened with ecclesiastical discipline for contumacy.

In letter to Bishop Chuck Murphy dated 30 November 2011 under the signature of all of the members of the Rwandan House of Bishops, the AMiA leader was chastised for disobedience.

“You have constantly disregarded the decisions and counsels of the House of Bishops” and have “misused the authority given to you by the Archbishop in advancing your new missionary society interests,” the Rwandan bishops said.

At a September meeting of the Rwandan House of Bishops, Bishop Murphy proposed reorganising the AMiA – a mission outreach of the Rwandan Church to the US. Bishop Murphy proposed keeping the AMiA part of the Rwandan Church, but moving the oversight of the Pawleys Island, South Carolina, group from the archbishop to a three-man college of consultors. Bishop Murphy proposed retired archbishops Emmanuel Kolini, Moses Tay and Yong Ping Church as the first college of consultors.

The Rwandan bishops objected to the reorganization and asked Bishop Murphy to halt work on the new structure until the bishops were of one mind on the topic. However, in meetings with AMiA clergy in October, Bishop Murphy said the project was four-fifths complete, and would be presented to the 21 December 2011 meeting of the Rwandan bishops for approval.

The Rwandan bishops repeated their request to halt work on the project, and in the 30 November letter gave the US bishop an ultimatum — repent of your disobedience or go.

The letter stated Bishop Murphy had ignored two requests to halt the reorganization of the AMiA into a missionary society, and had “insulted” members of the House of Bishops “using abusive language.”

He had also “dogged questions of financial transparency” and had not yet complied with a commitment given to the Rwandan bishops in September to provide an accounting of the group’s finances.

The Rwandan bishops asked Bishop Murphy to apologize for his actions, end his moves to re-organize the AMiA, and confirm his “commitment to refocus on AMiA.”

Unless he complied with this request within seven days, the Rwanda House of Bishops would assume that he had “made a ‘de facto’ choice to withdraw as primatial vicar” of the AMiA.

A spokesman for Bishop Murphy told The Church of England Newspaper, the American leader would honour the Rwandan request.

The reorganization debate “required the [AMiA] and the Province of Rwanda to engage in substantive dialogues, and we seek to ensure that our unique cultures are in clear communication with each other,” the spokesman said.

“It has required that we listen carefully to one another in our attempts to fully understand all of the issues involved from one another’s cultural perspectives,” she noted, adding the 30 November letter was “part of that yet unfinished dialogue and it will be addressed as our Archbishop has required.”

Crunching the numbers from Pawleys Island: Anglican Ink, December 9, 2011 December 10, 2011

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Swans guarding Dromantine Abbey

The AMiA press office appears to have shot itself in the foot once more.  On Dec 9, 2011 – some eleven months after Bishop Alexis Bilindibagabo requested Bishop Chuck Murphy provide an explanation for the discrepancy between the amount of money the AMiA reported as sending to Rwanda as a tithe, and the amount of money received by Rwanda (approximately $1.2 million) – the AMiA released data on the tithe to Rwanda for the years 2004 to 2010.

During this period, a total of $1.9 million was made in tithe gifts.  The funds were distributed in three categories: direct payments to the central fund of the Province of Rwanda totaling $1.11 million; $487,000 in travel expenses; and $312,000 in designated gifts.

The $312,000 is further divided in a third chart provided by the press office.  And here things become rather interesting.  Eleven line items are listed, and of these the names of four individuals are appended to the amounts.

Perhaps it is a coincidence, but the four names listed are of three Rwandan bishops who have called for an accounting – and me.  I am listed as having received $6692 for a White Paper written for the province.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Christianity Today picks up the AMiA story: Anglican Ink, December 7, 2011 December 7, 2011

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Ink, Press criticism.
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Bobby Ross, Jr.

Bobby Ross Jr., has written a great story of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA).  The article at Christianity Today entitled “Leaving Rwanda: Breakaway Anglicans Break Away Again” is rather clever.  It draws upon the imagery of “Out of Africa” as well as offering an amusing play on “breakaway – break away”.

He also takes the story forward, reporting that Bishop Murphy and his faction of the AMiA will seek another Anglican Province to serve as its sponsor.  They’re out of Rwanda but hopefully not out of Africa — and the Anglican Communion.

I did not envy Bobby when I learned he had been commissioned by CT to do this story.  Explaining intramural Anglican affairs is difficult enough to an audience that self-identifies as being Anglican/Episcopal, but making sense of the story for the wider Protestant world (CT’s audience) is harder still.

Yet, he does a great job summarizing the reasons for the split – and he is the first to report in print what the Bishop Murphy’s plans are now that he has cast off the heavy hand of Pharaoh.  (For those looking to take offense at my reporting on this issue I offer this one to you as a freebee – it is a reference to Bishop Murphy’s use of the analogy of Moses and the children of Israel leaving Egypt to describe his decision to withdraw from Rwanda and take his followers with him.)

Bobby quotes me in the story, pairing my observations with those of Cynthia Brust the AMiA’s press officer.

Line one:  “It’s just a sad, sad case all around,” Conger said. “There are no doctrinal or theological issues. It’s not about women priests or homosexuality or race. It’s entirely about egos.”

Line two: “It’s a dispute of personalities,” Conger said of the recent turmoil. “Archbishop Kolini had a very strong, good relationship with Bishop Murphy and essentially let Bishop Murphy do what he wanted to do.”

The CT story brings Bishop Murphy’s spokesman on board with a response to the concerns raised by Bishop Alex Bilindibagabo that funds the AMiA claims to have given to Rwanda did not make it into the province’s bank account.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

AMiA bishops break with Rwanda December 6, 2011

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Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje

Bishop Chuck Murphy has rejected the godly admonition of Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje and he and the members of the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) House of Bishops have broken with the Church of Rwanda.

In a letter dated 5 Dec 2011, Bishop Murphy and the AMiA House of Bishops announced that the Lord “is now doing” a “new thing” and that its bishops had decided to reject the discipline and oversight of Anglican Church of Rwanda .

Whether the clergy and congregations of the AMiA will follow their bishops into schism and out of the Anglican Communion is not known at this time.  However by this second secession in eleven years along with the adoption of a distinct Roman Catholic ecclesiology and sacramental theology, the AMiA appears to have given up its claim of being Anglican in order to follow its leader, Bishop Murphy.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Recant or resign, Rwanda tells Chuck Murphy: Anglican Ink, December 5, 2011 December 5, 2011

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Bishop Chuck Murphy Photo : AMiA

The head of the Anglican Mission in America has been threatened with ecclesiastical discipline for contumacy.  Unless Bishop Chuck Murphy repents of his disobedience and apologizes for his offensive statements within seven days, the Rwanda House of Bishops will assume that he has “made a de facto choice to withdraw as primatial vicar” of the AMiA.

In letter from the Rwandan House of Bishops to Bishop Murphy dated 30 Nov 2011, the AMiA leader was chastised for disobedience and abuse of office.

“You have constantly disregarded the decisions and counsels of the House of Bishops” and have “misused the authority given to you by the Archbishop in advancing your new missionary society interests,” said the letter signed by the Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje and the Rwandan bishops.

The censure follows a 17 Nov 2011 meeting in Washington between Bishop Murphy and Archbishop Rwaje, which sources described as having had a full and frank exchange of views.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

Anglican Unscripted, December 5, 2011 December 5, 2011

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican.TV, Church of North India, Persecution, South Carolina.
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Kevin and George discuss the very latest news from the Province of Rwanda and its relationship with AMiA.  They also talk about interpreting Church Canons and the miracle from the Diocese of South Carolina.  Peter Ould discusses the dirty little secret of the Church of England — don’t worry, we have the same secret here in America.  And, finally AS Haley talks about another Bishop being deposed last week.

AMiA denies resignation rumours: The Church of England Newspaper, December 2, 2011, p 6. December 2, 2011

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Bishop Chuck Murphy : Photo - AMiA

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

The Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) has denied speculation that its chairman, Bishop Chuck Murphy, has offered to step down in the wake its dispute with its parent church, the Province of Rwanda.

On 28 November 2011, a spokesman for the AMiA told The Church of England Newspaper that a report in the Christian Post that stated Bishop Murphy was going to retire was incomplete.

The resignation of AMiA Bishop Terrell Glenn coupled with a show of no confidence in Bishop Murphy over the planned reorganisation of the American church group by the Rwandan Church had led to speculation the American leader would step down. Sources in the AMiA told CEN they also had been briefed by senior leaders that Bishop Murphy was going to retire, however, the AMiA’s spokesman stated this was incorrect.

“While Bishop Murphy has indicated for quite some time that he plans to step down as Chairman of the Anglican Mission sometime around December 2013, he has not made any ‘formal announcement’ either internally or externally,” spokesman Cynthia Brust said.

At a 27 September 2011 meeting, Bishop Murphy unveiled the reorganisation strategy to the Rwandan bishops. The new arrangement would provide stability and continuity for the Pawleys Island, South Carolina-based organisation by moving oversight from the Archbishop of Rwanda to a self-perpetuating college of consultors, led by Archbishops Emmanuel Kolini, Moses Tay and Yong Ping Chung.

Rwandan leaders told CEN that they understood that Bishop Murphy had been asked at the September meeting to halt the implementation of the planned change. However, a series of meetings was subsequently held in Pawley’s Island discussing the status of the transformation. On 31 October 2011, Archbishop Rwaje wrote to Bishop Murphy “requesting that all procedures toward the formation of the new missionary society be halted until we go through the Jerusalem moment (are of common mind).”

The Archbishop’s letter also contained a strong word of rebuke, asking Bishop Murphy to reflect on “the spirit of rebellion and lawlessness.”

Last week Bishop Murphy met with Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje of Rwanda in Washington to discuss the AMiA’s reorganisation proposal. Details of the meeting have not been released, while a January meeting has been set for the bishops to discuss the future of the AMiA.

Anglican Unscripted, November 21, 2011 November 23, 2011

Posted by geoconger in Abuse, AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, Church of England.
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Kevin and George discuss Dr. Jeffert-Shori’s denial letter and AMiA’s role the 2008 Rwanda Canons. Also in this week’s episode Peter Ould discusses the on going saga of the Church of England and women Bishops; and AS Haley gives his time slot to the latest news from Georgia and the Diocese of South Carolina. Oh… and there is important news at the end of Episode 19 too.

Anglican Unscripted.

AMiA in rebellion, Rwanda charges: The Church of England Newspaper, November 18, 2011 p 7. November 18, 2011

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First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

The Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) has come under sharp criticism from the Church of Rwanda over its plans to pull away from the oversight of the African church.

On 31 Oct 2011 Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje directed AMiA Bishop Charles “Chuck” Murphy to suspend work on a proposal that would change its oversight from a “personal prelature” under the Rwandan primate to a missionary society overseen by an independent “college of consultors”.

Founded by Evangelicals in response to what it saw as the abandonment of the classical Anglicans in the United States, Bishop Murphy and Bishop John Rodgers were consecrated on 29 January 2000 at St Andrews Cathedral in Singapore by the Archbishop of Southeast Asia and Rwandan Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini. It has grown rapidly under the leadership of Bishop Murphy, but has begun to witness internal tensions as well as stresses in its relationship with Rwanda.

Citing personal disagreements with Bishop Murphy, the Rt. Rev. Terrell Glenn, an assistant bishop, last week announced his resignation.  Questions have also been raised over the transparency of the AMiA’s finances and leadership structure.  Criticisms have also been raised over new canons prepared by a former Roman Catholic clergyman now serving in the AMiA that have incorporated a Roman Catholic ecclesiology and sacramental theology.

The AMiA is not synodicaly governed but operates under the sole authority of its leader, Bishop Murphy, who acts as a primatial vicar for the archbishop. Rwanda’s Title II Canon 15 hold there are seven sacraments of two kinds, while Canon 17 teaches the doctrines of Transubstantiation and the Sacrifice of the Mass – a stance that puts the church at odds with Articles XXV and XXVIII.  The canons also follow the Roman Catholic teachings on confirmation, penance, matrimony, ordination, holy unction as well as baptism.

At its 2011 Winter Conference, Bishop Murphy indicated there would likely be a change in the AMiA’s relationship with Rwanda in light of the retirement of Archbishop Kolini.  Only two Rwandan bishops had been in office when the AMiA had been formed and the “institutional memory” was fading away, he noted.

A June 2011 meeting in Rwanda brought matters to a head.  The Rwandan Church asked for an accounting of funds collected by the AMiA and designated for the East African province.  Questions were also raised about the degree of accountability the AMiA had towards the Rwandan House of Bishops.  The Rwandan bishops also declined to approve Bishop Murphy’s assistant bishop nominations.

Bishop Murphy noted that the AMiA had no canonical obligation to send money to Rwanda – it had however, contributed an average of 12 per cent of its income over the last seven years to Rwanda’s general fund.  However, no public accounting of the disbursements has been made so far.

He also charged the Rwandan bishops with “reverse colonialism” – seeking to oversee a church half a world away.  This had not worked during the age of colonial expansion when London missionary societies oversaw African churches and could not work today, he argued.

At a 27 Sept 2011 meeting, Bishop Murphy unveiled the reorganization strategy to the Rwandan bishops.  The new arrangement would provide stability and continuity for the Pawleys Island, South Carolina-based organization by moving oversight to a self-perpetuating college of consultors, initially led by Archbishop Kolini.  While Bishop Murphy told CEN he believed the meeting went well, the Rwandan bishops were left nonplussed.

In an open letter to Bishop Murphy, Bishop John Rucyhana deplored the plan which would “take AMiA from its original intent.”  He believed the AMiA was being ungrateful, as “this move may hurt the relationship” between the AMiA and Rwanda, “which stood alone in the whole world with AMiA in the most difficult times.”

He was also distressed by what he saw as the AMiA’s taking Archbishop Kolini out of the Church of Rwanda.  “It may be extremely hard to comprehend for the retired Archbishop Kolini who led AMiA as a mission of Rwanda and now moves with AMiA out of the province during his retirement.”

On 31 Oct 2011, Archbishop Rwaje wrote to Bishop Murphy “requesting that all procedures toward the formation of the new missionary society be halted until we go through the Jerusalem moment (are of common mind).”

The AMiA also needed to address Rwanda’s concerns over the “painful visit” at the June House of Bishops meeting, the charge of “reverse colonialism” leveled by Bishop Murphy, the “assumption that the new Archbishop does not make decisions,” and to reflect on “the spirit of rebellion and lawlessness.”

Bishop Murphy told CEN it was “absurd” to suggest he was in rebellion.  He denied the AMiA was seeking to withdraw from Rwanda and stated his relations with the archbishop remained strong.  A meeting is scheduled next week in Washington between the AMiA and the primate to review the tensions before the 21 Dec 2011 meeting of the House of Bishops in Rwanda.

Anglican Unscripted, Episode 18, November 14, 2011 November 15, 2011

Posted by geoconger in Abuse, AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, CANA.
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Kevin and George bring more news from Rwanda/ Pawleys Island and shed light on Documents they have received.. They also discuss the end to the Anglican Covenant and the Parable of the Talents. Allan Haley talks about Penn State and how it is handling last weeks tragic news. Also this week there is an interview with Bishop Dobbs.

Anglican Unscripted, November 7, 2011 November 8, 2011

Posted by geoconger in AMiA, Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican.TV, CANA, Church of Nigeria, Connecticut, The Episcopal Church.
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Anglican Unscripted for November 7, 2011. Discussion of the Anglican Mission in America and the Province of Rwanda, violence in Nigeria, Episcopal Church statistics and legal developments in the Diocese of Connecticut.

Anglican Unscripted Oct 31, 2011 November 3, 2011

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Anglican Unscripted examines the tensions between the ACNA and the Church of Nigeria over the new Diocese of the Trinity, unconfirmed reports about the AMiA’s future, the trouble at St Paul’s and the latest on Katharine Jefferts Schori and Bede Parry.

 

Erratum: In this video I stated that Christ Church Plano withdrew from the AMiA over the issue of women’s ordination.  The rector of Christ Church Plano, Canon David Roseberry, kindly wrote to me and stated that this was not the case.  I mentioned Christ Church as an example of the gracious way the AMiA has handled disaffiliation of parishes.  I believe how that episode was resolved speaks highly of the integrity and Christian charity of the AMiA leadership and Canon Roseberry.  I regret I stepped on the story by adding an extraneous statement about why the parish left—and got that bit wrong.  Please excuse the error.

George Conger

New Rwandan primate installed: The Church of England Newspaper, Jan 28, 2011. January 29, 2011

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President Paul Kagame and Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje greet the press following the archbishop's installation as primate of Rwanda. Photo: Bishop Silas Ng

First printed in The Church of England Newspaper.

Church and State must work hand in hand to better the lives of the people of Africa, President Paul Kagame said on Jan 24 at the installation of the new primate of Rwanda, Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje.

In his address to the congregation gathered at the Kigali University stadium, President Kagame said the “government cannot do much without the help of the church, the private sector and the community itself.”

When church and state work together they fulfill God’s plan for his people, he said.

The president thanked outgoing Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini for his ministry in the wake of the 1994 genocide.  “Understanding and action goes together,” the president said, adding that he had witnessed how the Anglican Church of Rwanda during the past 13 years under Archbishop Kolini had taken positive steps toward rebuilding the nation and fostering peace and unity.

The present also pledged his government’s support for the new archbishop.  Archbishop Rwaje responded by noting the Anglican Church of Rwanda has been “working with other Christian denominations and the Muslim community in fostering peace and educational development, I also pledge to continue the relationship especially by strengthening the fight against poverty and HIV/Aids.”

In his sermon, the Primate of Burundi, Archbishop Bernard Ntahoturi, expounded upon 2 Kings, likening the passing of authority from Elijah to Elisha to the changing order within the Rwandan Church, with God’s power and authority passing onto a new anointed leader.

Rwandan revamp of Anglican ecclesiology: The Church of England Newspaper, Oct 8, 2010 p 8. October 8, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Anglican Covenant, Church of England Newspaper, Global South.
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The Rev. Dr. Kevin Donlon of the Global South Anglican Theological Formation and Education Task Force at the 2008 Gafcon conference in Jerusalem

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

The new Archbishop of Rwanda, the Most Rev. Onesphore Rwaje, has vowed to carry on the policies of his predecessor, Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, and push for the reform of the Anglican Communion.

In an interview with the New Times of Kigali published last week, the new archbishop, who will take office in January said he would hold fast to the church’s traditional teachings on human sexuality.

“Anything that is contrary to God’s family set-up is not acceptable; there is nowhere in the Bible where same-sex marriage is encouraged. God created a man and woman to be the basis of a family,” the archbishop said.

The Anglican Church of Rwanda has also been at the forefront of the reform movement within the Anglican Communion.  While it supports in principle the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Anglican Covenant process, it has been less than enthusiastic about how such a structure might work, given the anarchy now prevalent across the Communion.

At the All African Bishops Meeting in Entebbe in August, discussion of the Anglican Covenant among the gathered bishops took a decided second place to the conciliar programme for a renewed Anglican ecclesiology propounded by Rwanda and the Global South group of churches.

An August 2008 paper prepared by Dr. Kevin Donlon, an American priest of the AMiA, and a member of the Global South Anglican Theological Formation and Education Task Force, argued the Covenant was yesterday’s solution to today’s problems.

The paper, entitled The Challenges of Covenant and Canons for the Future of a Ius Commune Anglicanae, concluded: “The Covenant as an instrument by itself fails to address the fullness of the conciliar tradition that needs to be regained by Anglicans.  A church rooted in the catholic heritage is called to be church rooted in the claims a deposit of faith that includes a canonical and conciliar tradition that is one of the marks of the church since the Apostolic Period.”

“Anglicanism abandoned a conciliar and canonical understanding of the church when Henry Tudor ascribed all legislative responsibility to the Parliament at the Reformation. A draft of a Covenant without a canonical and conciliar structure illustrates once again that Anglican leaders seem unable to grasp the conciliar nature of the Church.”

Frustration with the present model of “instruments of Communion” and objections to an international church that centered round the authority of an English bishop not accountable to the wider church, has fueled discussion within the Global South about new ways of ordering the church.

“A new model for a new day is required where conversations about Canons and Covenants are not simply the speculation of non-binding conferences that insure autonomy over and above authority. The blending of covenant and canon is a way to embrace the conciliar model where matters of faith and practice at all levels of the Church come into an expression of praxis that is framed in a theology of the church that is biblical, Christological, salvific historical and ecclesiological in character consistent for the ages,” Dr. Donlon concluded.

Correction: The CEN’s Sept 24 report of Archbishop Rwaje’s election as the new primate of Rwanda stated that at the time of the 1994 Genocide, Bishop Rwaje was spirited across the border by a Hutu officer.  This report was inaccurate, as it was a different bishop who was thus rescued.  Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini also writes that tribal identification is frowned upon within the Anglican Church of Rwanda.

New Archbishop for Rwanda: The Church of England Newspaper, Sept 24, 2010 p 7. September 29, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Church of England Newspaper.
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Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje of Rwanda addressing Anglican participants at the World Council of Churches General Assembly in Brazil

The Bishop of Byumba, the Rt. Rev. Onesphore Rwaje has been elected the primate of the Anglican Church of Rwanda.  On Sept 17, the Rwandan House of Bishops meeting in Kigali elected Bishop Rwaje to serve as primate of the East African province in succession to Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini.  Archbishop Rwaje will also be translated to the newly created diocese of Gasabo, after having served as Bishop of Byumba since 1991.

The new archbishop has served as President of the Protestant Council of Rwanda, Dean of the province, and as the Anglican Church of Rwanda’s delegate to the World Council of Churches and the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa, and as an alternate member of the general committee of the All Africa Council of Churches.

The chairman of the Anglican Mission in the Americas, Rwanda’s missionary outreach in the United States and Canada, Bishop Chuck Murphy said he welcomed the election of Archbishop Rwaje.

The presence of the Holy Spirit was clear and evident throughout the meeting, and we were blessed to have an election on the first ballot with overwhelming support for the Dean of the Province of Rwanda, Bishop Onesphore Rwaje,” he said.

Forgive but never forget, Rwandan bishops say on the 16th anniversary of the Genocide: The Church of England Newspaper, April 16, 2010 p 6. April 21, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Rwanda, Church of England Newspaper.
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Bishop-elect Louis Muvunyi of Kigali and his wife, Winnie.

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

Church leaders across Rwanda have marked the 16th anniversary of the 1994 Genocide with a call to forgive, but never forget.

The Bishop-coadjutor of Kigali, the Rt. Rev. Louis Muvunyi urged his countrymen to seek the truth and support the investigations of the descent into murder and madness that nearly destroyed their country. But he urged them also to follow Christ and forgive. In the 100 days following the assassination of President Juvénal Habyarimana on April 6, 1994 an estimated 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were murdered by militant Hutus.

Preaching to a congregation gathered on the shores of Lake Muhazi, the Tutsi bishop recounted how his three brothers were murdered on the second day of the Genocide by their Hutu neighbors and their bodies, and later the bodies of his parents, were dumped into the lake by their killers. “I only survived because I had gone to study in Tanzania. So, when I sit close to this lake, I try to come to terms with what happened,” the new bishop said on April 10.

He called upon Hutus and Tutsis to live in peace, to set aside hatreds and the desire for revenge and work together to build a new Rwanda. Elected by the Rwandan House of Bishops to succeed Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, Bishop-elect Muvunyi was archdeacon of Kigali and acting dean of the Kigali Anglican Theological College at the time of his election on March 27. The Primate of Rwanda, Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini will retire as Bishop of Kigali on his 65th birthday later this year.

The Bishop of Butare, the Rt. Rev. Nathan Gasatura told students and faculty at a ceremony marking the anniversary held at the National University of Rwanda that without forgiveness, the pains of the Genocide would continue to scar the country.

“Failure to forgive is like keeping a heavy burden on your heart, but to forgive is to liberate yourself from trauma which leads to healing of a broken heart and building hope for the future,” Bishop Gasatura said, according to the New Times of Kigali.

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