NIGERIA: Anglican Province Now Over 25 Million in Unique Discipleship Program

Apr 16, 2008 by

From Virtueonline The Anglican Church in Nigeria, the largest and fastest growing Province in the Anglican Communion, is growing by leaps and bounds in a unique 1+1+3 program that has seen the church soar from 18 million to more than 25 million with 10 archbishops, 140 bishops and 37 new dioceses birthed in the last two years. "We are not simply making new converts, we are making disciples for Christ," said the Rt. Rev. Ikechi Nwachukwu Nwosu, Bishop of Umuahia in Eastern Nigeria. His diocese was started 15 years ago and now has 1.2 million practicing Anglicans in five dioceses out of a population of 2.5 million. This is typical of the growth throughout Nigeria. "The 1+1+3 program means that one person leads one person to Christ and disciples them intensively for three years. Every Anglican, from archbishops to bishops to lay people, must fulfill this requirement in order to reach Nigeria’s 120 million. Every Anglican is a one on one agent of conversion. Each must disciple that one person for three years and then that person must disciple someone else. It has had a multiplying effect. This is why the church is growing. Archbishop Peter Akinola (photo above),  Primate of Nigeria started the program in 2004. It was his vision for multiplying the Anglican presence in Nigeria. He did it to effectively combat crime and ills in Nigerian society, which were rapidly increasing at that time. According to the bishop, said the intensified program of evangelism and discipleship, which is promulgated by the Church’s Mission Committee, is done by all the bishops’ clergy and laity of the province. "That is the secret of our success. The House of Bishops and laity are all kept informed about the progress in evangelism and discipleship. As a result, we have needed to create whole new dioceses with the more outgoing evangelical clergy willing to make the sacrifices to do the work at minimal cost. "I carved a new diocese out here (Eastern Nigeria) and I told the primate and he carried it to the HOB. We pioneered it and it has been taken up by other dioceses. We now have three new dioceses." Read the whole article HERE....

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Nigeria has more dioceses than the USA

Apr 14, 2008 by

By George Conger for CEN The Church of Nigeria has surpassed the Episcopal Church in the United States as the Province with the largest number of dioceses, following the creation of 19 dioceses at a joint meeting of the Church’s House of Bishops and Standing Committee on March 26-29 in Nnewi. “Plans and funds are now in place for the creation of one full-fledged and eighteen new missionary dioceses,” the Church reported, and twenty new bishops were elected to fill a vacant post and the new sees. The Nigerian Church will now boast 131 dioceses and missionary jurisdictions. “The creation of new dioceses as a deliberate evangelistic strategy is bearing remarkable fruit,” the final communiqué said, as “those missionary dioceses created twelve months ago have reported that they have already planted over three hundred new congregations.”   Read the article...

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Australia's Flying Bishops

Apr 12, 2008 by

By George Conger for CEN Archbishop of Adelaide has circulated a proposal for alternative episcopal oversight for those opposed to the ministrations of women bishops ahead of this week’s meeting of the Australian House of Bishops. In a split 4-3 decision released on Sept 28, 2007 the Church’s Appellate Tribunal found the language of the Law of the Church of England Clarification Canon 1992 did not require a bishop to be male in order to meet the definition of ‘canonical fitness’ for the Episcopal ministry. Two suffragan sees, one in Melbourne and one in Perth, are presently vacant and supporters of women bishops hope a woman cleric will be appointed to fill the vacancy in time for the Lambeth Conference. However, opponents of women bishops, led by the evangelical Archbishop of Sydney and Anglo-Catholic Bishop of Ballarat have protested the decision, saying such an innovation must go through General Synod, rather than a re-reading of the canons by a court. Read the whole article...

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AAC Interviews Bishop Mark Lawrence

Apr 12, 2008 by

From the American Anglican Council What we have in The Episcopal Church (TEC) today is that many people feel like the faith of the church has been compromised or violated and in order to deal with what they feel is a profound compromise or denial of the faith of the church historically and biblically, they feel like they have to do things contrary to the order of the church. At that point, many in the House of Bishops and in various other formats of the church desire to impose the order of the church upon them. That is, if Bishop Schofield believes the faith of the church has been denied, he has to go beyond the order of the church as in the canons and constitution of TEC, and those who are in the forefront who are quite comfortable with the new faith of the church, so to speak, feel like they have to impose the order upon him or upon Bishop Cox. The difficulty we have, then, is the very way we went about imposing the order of the church. That is, after the House of Bishops’ meeting, after the voting on the canonical depositions of Bishop Cox and Bishop Schofield, it seemed to be revealed that those depositions were done in a way that was contrary to the order of the church… Read the interview HERE....

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BRAZIL: Bishops protest Southern Cone archbishop's unauthorized visit

Apr 10, 2008 by

From Virtueonline Episcopal News Service April 09, 2008 The bishops of the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil issued an open statement April 9 expressing their "strong repudiation" of a recent unauthorized visit by Southern Cone Archbishop Gregory Venables to Recife "where he took part in and celebrated at official occasions outside his Province without the knowledge and consent of the Archbishop of the Province of Brazil and this House of Bishops." The full text of the statement, dated April 3 and released on April 9, follows. The House of Bishops of the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil gathered in Curitiba unanimously express their strong repudiation of the recent visit by the Archbishop of the Southern Cone to the city of Recife, where he took part in and celebrated at official occasions outside his Province without the knowledge and consent of the Archbishop of the Province of Brazil and this House of Bishops. This disrespectful and arrogant attitude against the Province of Brazil, is another element of discord caused by the Archbishop of the Province of the Southern Cone since the ecclesiastical court hearing and deposition of Robinson Cavalcanti. As it is known by all the Anglican Communion, Mr. Cavalcanti was deposed through a lawful and canonical process due to his breaking of ordination vows. The action of the Primate of the Southern Cone represents an attack on the pillars of the Anglican tradition, which include respect to Provincial autonomy and collegiality among the Primates of the Communion. Equally, this attitude, unheard of in the Communion, clearly contradicts the Windsor Report and the resolution by the last Primates meeting in Tanzania in February 2007. The Primate of the Southern Cone has repeatedly violated those boundaries through official acts as he invites, receives and cares pastorally for the dissident clergy, bishops, communities and dioceses from other Provinces. This is also exemplified by what has been happening recently with our sister provinces of the United States and Canada. What at the beginning of those regrettable events of the schism in Recife was seen as a pastoral care provision for the deposed bishop and those who followed him, has become a formal primatial reception of those deposed. It has also been transformed into unacceptable acts of primatial nature within the jurisdiction of our province. We appeal to His Grace, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Primates of the Anglican Communion to consider this vehement protest by the Province of Brazil in order to avoid a serious rupture with our Anglican tradition. The consequences of such unilateral and disrespectful gesture of Archbishop Gregory Venables to a sister Province represents a serious breach of the bonds of affection and loyalty, respect and interdependence in the Anglican Communion. Let us remember that arrogance has never been, and will never be, a wise companion for relationships! Yours ever in Christ, ++ Maurício...

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