Monday, April 23, 2012

GAFCON meeting underway in London; biased reporting in full swing

GAFCON leaders are meeting in London. Here is the announcement via Sydney Anglicans.
The first leadership conference since GAFCON in 2008 is underway in London.

200 clergy and lay leaders, men and women from more than 25 countries, are gathered in London this week.

Archbishop Wabukala
The meeting was the initiative of GAFCON primates through the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (FCA), which was established after the Jerusalem meeting in 2008.

It follows the latest meeting of the GAFCON/FCA primates council, chaired by the Most Rev’d Eliud Wabukala, Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Kenya.

A media statement is due on Monday (UK time).

Archbishop Jensen
Archbishop Peter Jensen is the General Secretary of the FCA, and several Sydney delegates attended the conference, including Dr Mark Thompson, Peter Rogers and Malcolm RIchards from CMS, Dr Claire Smith and lawyer Gillian Davidson as well as the Rector of Cherrybrook, Gav Poole who played a leading organisational role.

Delegates came from other parts of Australia, South Pacific, Asia, Africa, the Middle east and from across the UK.

It is being held at St Mark’s, Battersea Rise and will hear from by speakers including Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali, the Rev. Dr. Ashley Null, and Bishop John Akao.

Against the backdrop of the increasingly liberal path chosen by the US Episcopal Church, the consecration of openly homosexual bishops and clergy and denial of basic biblical doctrines in some Northern hemisphere provinces, Abp Wabukala expressed the hope that God would bless the conference by “turning this present crisis moment into a visionary future.”
As is always the case when orthodox Anglicans meet, beware of biased reporting, especially from news sources across the pond. Here is how the BBC is reporting the meeting (emphasis original).
Leaders of a worldwide dissident Anglican movement are meeting in London to discuss how to sustain traditional Christian beliefs.

The Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (FCA) grew out of concern over developments in some national Churches.

Many Anglicans, particularly in Africa, object to the ordination of gay bishops in the US.

Some 200 delegates from 29 countries are expected to attend the leadership conference at a south London church.

'Biblical teaching' 
The FCA was founded following the Gafcon (Global Anglican Future) conference in Jerusalem in 2008.

The fellowship was an attempt by more traditional Christians to re-assert what its leaders regard as authentic biblical teaching.

The conference is being held at St Mark's church in Battersea Rise.

One of the participants, Archbishop of Sydney Peter Jensen, has described the FCA as "the only game in town".

"It is a point of rallying Anglicans from around the world. Of exciting them again about the gospel of Jesus.

"It is the mainstream. It represents, the people involved in it, represents the vast majority of Anglicans," Archbishop Jensen told BBC correspondent John McManus.

St Mark's Church
Archbishop Jensen said he appreciated that the current head of the Anglican Communion, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, has had a difficult job in trying to keep the organisation united in the face of widely-differing world views.
Included in the report is a photograph of the meeting place, with the caption, "Dissident Anglicans are meeting at St Mark's Church."

Dissident Anglicans? Um, no. Dissidents, historically, are people who disagree with established teaching. GAFCON and FCA exist specifically for the preservation and propagation of the established teaching of the Anglican Communion. The Anglican tradition is no stranger to dissidents, of course, but the term, like Anglican tradition, is not subject to redefinition according to the whims of certain trendy British and American clerics. It would be more accurate, in fact, to refer to the trendy ones as the dissidents, but we learned long ago not to expect that kind of accuracy from the media.