New Vision (Kampala)

Africa: 'Pope's Offer Not Vital for Africa' - Orombi

Kampala — AFRICAN Anglicans do not need the Pope's intervention over consecration of gay bishops, the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Henry Luke Orombi, has said.

Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday announced new initiatives allowing Anglicans to enter full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of their spiritual and liturgical tradition.

Orombi said such measures by the Vatican are not called for in the African Anglican Church, which he said had successfully resisted liberalism from Western countries.

"Anglo-Catholic Anglicans have been disillusioned by the liberal churches in the West that created a theological crisis with their liberal attitude to sexuality. Many of them would be happy with the Pope's initiative. But the African Church does not need that because it is strong on biblical theology," he argued.

Orombi said the African Anglican Church split after realising that the Western churches had yielded to liberal measures on sexuality, which are contrary to the biblical teachings.

In a historic move, African Anglican churches held a conference in Jerusalem last year during which they officially broke away from Canterbury.

"The African Anglican Church has undertaken measures to deal with the excesses of liberalism that invaded the western church. We are a Bible-believing Church," Orombi said.

Kenya's Anglican Church yesterday also rejected the Pope's offer that would have seen married Anglican priests join the Catholic Church.

"The Archbishop of Canterbury (Rowan Williams) sent us letters welcoming the offer, but it is essentially to deal with the local England context and does not apply to other provinces.

"There are theological differences, for instance, the ministry and administration of sacrament are different. I do not see why it is necessary at this point in history," Kenyan Archbishop Eliud Wabukala said.

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