Akinola Warns Nigeria May Break from Church of England over Homosexuality
Nigeria’s Anglican primate has said that Nigerian churches might cut ties with the Church of England if its stance on homosexuality, which accepts gay priests in same-sex partnerships, is not revised.
Published 01 October 2005 | Jennifer Gold
Nigeria’s Anglican primate has said that Nigerian churches might cut ties with the Church of England if its stance on homosexuality, which accepts gay priests in same-sex partnerships, is not revised, according to AP.
"As of now, we have not yet reached the point of schism, but there's a broken relationship," Archbishop Peter Akinola told reporters on Thursday.
The Church of England’s House of Bishops has already announced on 25 July that gay priests who register same-sex partnerships under a new civil law will be accepted as long as they remain celibate.
Archbishop Akinola has said that there are still hopes of recovering church unity if liberal churches that were supporting homosexuality showed “repentance”, according to AP.
Through the Global South grouping of churches in Africa, Asia and Latin America, the Nigerian Anglican Church with its 17.5 million members has been taking on a leading role to oppose Church acceptance of homosexuality.
The churches in Nigeria and Uganda whose leaders have firmly opposed the direction that the Church of England has taken on the issue of homosexuality, have already cut their relations with the U.S Episcopal Church after it consecrated a gay bishop in 2003.
|QUOTE|The relationship with Canada’s Anglican Church was also ended after the blessing of same-sex marriages were approved.
Issues on homosexuality in the Church have deeply scarred the Anglican Communion. Akinola said, “Why should England be spared?”
In relation to the already severed ties with the US and Canada arms of the Church, Akinola said, "What's good for the geese is good for the gander."
However, Akinola has said that he still considers the Church of England as the mother church of Anglicanism and has agreed to discuss differences with the CoE officials at a meeting of conservative Anglican churches in Cairo starting 25 October.
"At the end of the day these churches have the right to determine who their partners are," he said.