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Sudan withdraws invitation to the Presiding Bishop

Sudan withdraws invitation to the Presiding Bishop

Archbishop Deng Bul, the Primate of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan, has written to the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church to withdraw her invitation to visit Sudan this spring. He cites the Episcopal Church’s support of gay and lesbian Christians as the cause.

“The Most Rev Katharine Jefferts Schori

Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church

United States of America

Thursday 15th December 2011

Dear Bishop Katharine,

Advent greetings to you in the name of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

It is with a heavy heart that I write you informing you of our decision as a House of Bishops to withdraw your invitation to the Episcopal Church of the Sudan (ECS). We acknowledge your personal efforts to spearhead prayer and support campaigns on behalf of the ECS and remain very grateful for this attention you and your church have paid to Sudan and South Sudan. However, it remains difficult for us to invite you when elements of your church continue to flagrantly disregard biblical teaching on human sexuality.

Find attached a statement further explaining our position as a province.

(Signed)

–(The Most Rev.) Dr. Daniel Deng Bul Yak, Archbishop Primate and Metropolitan of the Province of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan and Bishop of the Diocese of Juba “

From here. According to Kendall Harmon, the letter above has only had one typo corrected.

You can read the text of the statement below:

STATEMENT OF HOUSE OF BISHOPS OF THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH OF SUDAN ON HUMAN SEXUALITY

The House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan in its meeting held in Juba from 14-16, November 2011 in the context of General Synod has reaffirmed the statement of the Sudanese Bishops at the Lambeth Conference in 2008 as quoted below:

“We reject homosexual practice as contrary to Biblical teaching and can accept no place for it within ECS. We strongly oppose developments within the Anglican Church in USA and Canada in consecrating a practicing homosexual as bishop and in approving a rite for the blessing of same-sex relationships.”

We are deeply disappointed by The Episcopal Church’s refusal to abide by Biblical teaching on human sexuality and their refusal to listen to fellow Anglicans. For example, TEC Diocese of Los Angles, California in 2010 elected and consecrated Mary Douglas Glasspool as their first lesbian assistant Bishop. We are not happy with their acts of continuing ordaining homosexuals and lesbians as priests and bishops as well as blessing same sex relations in the church by some dioceses in TEC; it has pushed itself away from God’s Word and from Anglican Communion. TEC is not concerned for the unity of the Communion.

The Episcopal Church of Sudan is recognizing the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) fully as true faithful Orthodox Church and we will work with them to expand the Kingdom of God in the world. Also we will work with those Parishes and Dioceses in TEC who are Evangelical Orthodox Churches and faithful to God.

We will not compromise our faith on this and we will not give TEC advice anymore, because TEC ignored and has refused our advices.

(The Most Rev.) Dr. Daniel Deng Bul, Archbishop and Primate of Episcopal Church of Sudan, Juba, 12th December 2011

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John D

This bigotry really hurts, doesn't it? Similar posturing by the Potentate of Egypt, ruler of Episcopal Jerusalem, has convinced me to send my money for Palestine to secular organizations( Oxfam, et al) for relief. It is a damned shame when secular organizations hold Christ's teachings more highly than "Anglican" agencies.

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John D. Andrews

This saddens me. Just this last week a group from the Episcopal Diocese of Nebraska returned from the South Sudan. We are also a companion diocese with Twic East. Just last week I met with other members of my church's outreach committee and said we should send funds to Twic East. Now, I must say I am conflicted about that. Jesus never placed conditions on people, so I become very disappointed when Christians do. It is apparent to me that the church in the South Sudan is being religiously bigoted and not acting as Christ would act.

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BSnyder

(Meanwhile, "Legalized same-sex marriage may boost gay men's health."

But of course, "orthodoxy" is far more important than exposing prejudice, cruelty, and violence against small minority groups, or helping people find better ways to live....)

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BSnyder

The Bishop might want to read about the "first official UN Report" on LGBT rights as it "calls for LGBT rights worldwide."

Excerpts:

"Homosexuals and transgender people in all regions face discrimination and violence, including killings, rape and torture because of their orientation, and risk the death penalty in at least five countries, the United Nations said on Thursday.

In the first official U.N. report on the issue, it called on governments to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, prosecute all serious violations and repeal discriminatory laws.

“Homophobic and transphobic violence has been recorded in all regions. Such violence may be physical (including murder, beatings, kidnappings, rape and sexual assault) or psychological (including threats, coercion and arbitrary deprivations of liberty),” said the report by U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay.

....

In addition to spontaneous “street” violence, people perceived as being LGBT may be targets of more organised abuse, “including by religious extremists, paramilitary groups, neo-Nazis and extreme nationalists,” the U.N. report said.

Violence against LGBT people tends to be especially vicious, with “a high degree of cruelty” including mutilation and castration, it added.

....

Members of sexual minorities are disproportionately subjected to torture, often in custody, the report said.

Too bad this report doesn't square with "Anglican orthodoxy," but that's no surprise at this point. Gay people have long since learned to rely on the secular world for mercy and protection anyway....

(Here's a PDF of the report itself.)

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Roger Mortimer

I imagine that this has much to do with the settlement of the status of newly-recognized South Sudan, where the archdiocese is situated. TEC's voice and support are no longer needed.

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