South Sudanese diocese formally severs relationship with Diocese of Indianapolis

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In a letter to the diocese released yesterday, Bishop Cate Waynick told the diocese that Bishop Ruben Akurdid of the diocese of Bor in South Sudan had written to inform her that their relationship would cease due to TEC’s move towards marriage equality.

The letter is below

 

March 2, 2016

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I write to share the sad news that our fourteen year partnership with the Diocese of Bor, South Sudan, has come to an end.

For the past few years the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church in Sudan and South Sudan has been concerned over the actions of several Provinces of the Anglican Communion in which same-sex blessings have taken place.In December of 2015 they passed a resolution requiring that no formal partnerships can be sustained with Dioceses where such blessings occur.

I received a letter from Bishop Ruben Akurdid in mid-February, explaining their position, and thanking me for the partnership we were able to have for these many years. I have responded with a letter expressing my deep disappointment, my hope that in the future such partnerships will again be possible, and assuring him that our hearts and doors are always open to him and our brothers and sisters in Bor.

You are no longer obligated to include the Diocese of Bor in public prayer, but many of you may choose to join me in my promise to Bishop Ruben that he will remain in my own prayers, and that prayers for lasting peace in South Sudan will continue to rise from our hearts.

We will maintain our relationship with Brasilia, and I ask that every parish continue to honor the mandate of our Convention that the Diocese of Brasilia, and their Bishop, Mauricio, be included each week in the prayers of the People.

I am also pleased to tell you that Bishop Mauricio and his wife, Sandra, will be visiting us this coming May 25-31.Please watch for more information about this visit, and if you have something particularly interesting happening in your parish during that time, please let us know.We may be able to arrange to be with you!

I pray your Lenten disciplines are enriching your lives during this holy season.

Blessings,

+Cate

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Nhial Abednego
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Nhial Abednego

Cynthia Katsarelis, we should convinced each other in references to Bible. The word support! Support! From USA will not convinced diocese of Bor to accept gay. This is the first time for me to hear that there is support from indianapolis. USA shouldn't invest their wealth to destroy God kingdom. Dollar is earthly material and it must end anytime compared to God kingdom which will remain for ever. Only Almigty God to protect His people from south sudan against exploitation from USA

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Cynthia Katsarelis
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I wish I could email David, alas he wisely doesn't give his address. In case you check in:

The New Testament was written in Greek and there was no word for "homosexuality" at that time. We have scholars who have studied this extensively, for the most part, Scripture does not say what you think it does about gays. To many of us it looks like your conclusions come from flawed English translations with misunderstandings of the culture of the time.

In the West we have not lost our minds, for 40 years we have studied, prayed, and used all the gifts that God has given us, Scripture, Tradition, and Reason.

Further, we also have scientists who study psychological issues. One major concept is that we human beings have caused each other a great deal of suffering because we don't deal well with difference. The concept of "the other." We stereotype and consequently demonize people because of differences like race, gender, sexuality, religion, etc. So attitudes that we call "homophobic" is giving a name to the practice of stereotyping and possibly demonizing gays or anyone because of difference.

We are all created in the Image of God. All of us, black/white, rich/poor, gay/straight, male/female. All of us. Jesus told us to love all of our neighbors. This is the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Jesus also said "don't judge." There is nothing unclear about that one. And there is no example of Jesus withholding love and relationship because of disagreement. We only have the example of Jesus lambasting Pharisees for misusing the Law to demean others.

Criminalization of gays is a human rights violation. The Episcopal Church is not pushing gay marriage on anyone else, it is the conclusion we have come to after 40 years of hard discernment conducted with integrity.

I hope that there can be mutual love and respect in this disagreement. After all, the disagreement over marriage could just as easily be over divorce, which is mentioned far more often in Scripture.

There are other issues, of course. Some people take a more literal view of Scripture, some of us take it as revelation that has come to us through the eyes of flawed human beings who were products of their own culture.

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David Makuei Madir
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David Makuei Madir

I thanks everyone who have commented on this topic. I would like to introduce myself first. My name is David Madir, I am a South Sudanese christian who is currently living in Juba, South Sudan. I come from Bor and a member of Bor Diocese where Bishop Ruben Akurdid come from. I just wanted to thanks you, you our friends, brothers and sisters in Christ from Indianapolis, Indiana who have been very supportive of our diocese of Bor and South Sudan in general for sometimes until this time when our relationships cease. I think we need to know two things about being in a relationship. One our relationship with Christ and his teaching can't never be compromised over some bodily needs. Christ relationship is a personal thing. The material needs is general which affect everyone whether one beliefs in Christ or not. Secondly, to have faith in Jesus Christ is a personal things, but those who are put in charge like Bishops, Pastors and etc have the obligation to pay attention to those things that deviate the faithful from their faith. Now we all know that same - sex relationship or marriage is rejected by God read 1Corinthians 6:9-10. Here I quote" Don't you know that those who do wrong will have no share in the Kingdom of God? Don't fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, who are idol worshipers, adulterers, male prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, greedy people, drunkards, abusers, and swindlers - none of these will have a share in the Kingdom of God" and in verse 13 of the same chapter it says, " You say, food is good for the stomach and the stomach is for food." This is true, though someday God will do away with both of them. But our bodies where not made for sexual immorality. They were made for the Lord, and the Lord cares about our bodies." Now if we say that they church leaders should love all people regardless of their own sexual needs and feelings, then, we are not being honest about our relationships with Christ. If our Christians brothers and sisters practice the things the Apostle Paul said in this book of Corinthians, then we are not following the words of Christ. I would end here but I would like anyone who have something to share with me write to me by email because I will not continue with this discussion on here. Thank you all, may God Bless.

David Makuei Madir

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Clark Lemons
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Clark Lemons

Cynthia Katsarelis,
Thanks for your witness to Christ and the church. I hope people will read you message about the importance of love, and sacrifice, regardless of all else.
.

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JC Fisher
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JC Fisher

Makes the heart sad. God grant reconciliation, in God's Time. God bless the people of the South Sudan, and God bless the Episcopal Church.

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