The Most Rev’d Nicholas D. Okoh, MA, Fss, Mss, LLD, Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria issued a pastoral letter to his province providing his perspective on the primates gathering. He writes,
… we know that the Anglican Church of Canada, Scotland, Whales (sic), Brazil and New Zealand are on the way to toeing the footsteps of TEC. We are yet to be convinced that the restrictions imposed on TEC will be implemented. [emphasis added]
In his letter of 18 January, titled Meeting-of-the-Primates of the Anglican Communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Rev’d and Rt. Hon. Justin Welby, Monday 11 – Friday 15 January, 2016, he makes no reference to the early departure Thursday afternoon of the ACNA leader and the majority of GAFCON primates.
However, he writes “Attached is the statement of the meeting regarding TEC.” This is the statement that was leaked to a conservative blog, and is an Addendum to the primates communiqué. Evidently, he is not sharing with his province the LGBT-affirming language in the primates communiqué let alone the primates’ wide array of concerns beyond human sexuality — concerns all primates who remained through Friday shared.
He contradicts assertions that GAFCON exists for reasons beyond differences over homosexuality:
In the meantime, the state of broken communion with TEC and Canada and those churches that are following their bad examples remains in place. Our decision to severe relations was based on their practice of ordaining and consecrating clergy in active homosexual relationship. This is what led to GAFCON …. [emphasis in the original]
He does choose to call the gathering a Meeting of Primates even though he and other GAFCON primates insisted they would not attend a meeting of primates if The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada were also present. By switching the nomenclature from “meeting” to “gathering” Welby was able to entice them to accept his invitation. In Okoh’s words, “following the almost unanimous resolution of GAFCON and the Global South Groups, we decided to accept the invitation.”
Further, he makes no mention of the attendance of the ACNA leader which was supposedly a reason the GAFCON primates accepted Welby’s invitation to the gathering.
Addendum. From the comments:
I am genuinely curious as to what the archbishop thinks the “restrictions imposed” on the Episcopal Church are. I don’t have a clear sense, and am not certain there is general agreement on this point. I am also curious as to why he thinks a gathering of primates has the authority to impose these restrictions. It is hard to understand statements and the motives behind them when we seem to lack general agreement on such basic points. – Jim Naughton