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Melanesian primate David Vunagi retires

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 8:01am

Bishops and priests at the end of a farewell service to Archbishop David Vunagi. Photo: Anglican Church of Melanesia

[Anglican Church of Melanesia] A farewell liturgical service on Sept. 6 marked the official retirement of the Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Melanesia, the Most Rev. David Vunagi.

The live broadcast service took place at the St. Barnabas Cathedral.

Vunagi became primate of the Anglican Church of Melanesia in 2009. He succeeded the late Archbishop Emeritus Sir Ellison Pogo.

Vunagi had served as Bishop of the Diocese of Temotu for nine years at the time of his election as primate.

He served the Church of Melanesia for 38 years as a priest, teacher and lecturer in church institutes.

In his farewell address, Vunagi urged members of the church to support the next archbishop and thanked the bishops, priests and lay members of the church for the support they’d shown him during his leadership in the Anglican Church of Melanesia.

Bishop Nathan Tome of the Diocese of Guadalcanal will serve as spiritual leader of the province until the election and enthronement of the next archbishop. The election will be held on Feb. 12, 2016, and the enthronement is scheduled for April 17.

Anglicans respond to global refugee crisis

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:50am

[Anglican Communion News Service] Anglican churches and congregations around the globe are responding to the Syrian refugee crisis with offers of help, support, prayers and political lobbying.

In New Zealand, Anglican Archbishop Philip Richardson has joined forces with his Roman Catholic counterpart, Cardinal John Dew, to call on the government to double its annual refugee cap. Since 1987 New Zealand has capped the number of refugees it will receive at 750 each year – a number that has remained unchanged since it was introduced. The two leaders are now calling for that number to be increased, saying that there is a need for “an urgent collective response.”

“The response is government-led and can involve communities and churches working together,” they said in a statement.

Within the province, the Diocese of Wellington has said its congregations are ready to house and provide financial support for 40 families – around 160 people – as part of a “One family, one parish” initiative.

Bishop of Wellington Justin Duckworth has asked every congregation across the diocese to take responsibility for one refugee family. So far, about 40 out of 60 congregations have agreed to take part and more are expected to follow shortly.

“In the Diocese of Wellington we aspire to serve the ‘last, lost and least,’” Duckworth says. “We cannot have this as a core part of our identity and not respond to this overwhelming human tragedy in a practical way.”

He continued: “As a country we have been criticized for not doing enough to respond to the refugee crisis. We want to say loudly and clearly, as the Anglican Church of New Zealand, that we are prepared to help in a practical way.”

In Australia, Archbishop of Sydney Glenn Davies called on the government to develop a “comprehensive response” to the crisis.

“One of the most significant characteristics of a civilized society is the way it treats those who are the most vulnerable,” Davies said. “In our own country we have sought to address the needs of children, the intellectually or physically disabled, and the aged, all of whom suffer a disadvantage that is not common to the ordinary working Australian. However, as our world is larger than Australia, so our vision for vulnerable persons ought to be larger,” he said.

“Our TV screens have been awash with images of desperate people fleeing the war torn areas of Syria and Iraq. While it has been pleasing to see the way in which Germany’s Chancellor has responded to this humanitarian crisis with an open invitation to settle within her borders, not all countries have shown the same kind of generosity. However, the crisis is too great to be ignored – too great even for Europe to solve on its own.”

He has called on Australia to increase its refugee quota from 20,000 per year, saying: “I ask that urgent consideration be given to this, as well as other measures Australia could take to alleviate the suffering caused by the Syrian crisis.”

Their calls follow a statement by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby last week in which he described the crisis as “hugely complex and wicked.”

“There are no easy answers and my prayers are with those who find themselves fleeing persecution, as well as those who are struggling under immense pressure to develop an effective and equitable response,” Welby said. “Now, perhaps more than ever in post-war Europe, we need to commit to joint action across Europe, acknowledging our common responsibility and our common humanity.”

The four bishops in the Church of England’s Diocese of Chelmsford said that they and their churches “stand ready to play our part.”

In a joint statement, they say: “As national and local responses develop we will be delighted to work with willing communities (Christian, other faiths and non-faith) and civic leaders to offer sanctuary and welcome to any refugees who are admitted to our area, including providing accommodation. We are currently looking into practical measures to help the situation.

“There is a real and urgent need to act locally in the face of a global challenge, and respond to the U.N.’s plea for resettlement. This would be in keeping with the finest Christian and British traditions of championing human dignity and offering sanctuary to those fleeing persecution.”

Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, is calling on Canadian Anglicans to adopt a three-fold approach to the crisis. In a joint statement with Adele Finney, director of the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund, he is calling for Anglicans to lobby politicians to demand easier access to the country for Syrian refugees with family already in Canada; for Anglicans to commit to providing 10,000 resettlement places for government-assisted refugees; and for Anglicans to contribute to the province’s relief agency.

“In times past Canada has taken extraordinary measures to welcome refugees in crisis,” the two leaders said. “It is time for us to do so again.”

Commenting on the haunting photographs of Alan Kurdi, the Syrian toddler whose body was washed up on a beach in Turkey before being carried off the beach by a policeman, they said: “The Turkish policeman is us. Alan Kurdi is our child.

“We knew that in the first moment we saw their pictures in today’s newspapers. We knew that in our gut, and when our heart’s cry poured out through our eyes. Our senses involuntarily respond and urgently demand that we act individually and as a human community.”

Syria isn’t the only source of refugees. Many refugees are fleeing the conflict in South Sudan and are heading to neighboring countries, including Ethiopia.

The Episcopal Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East is actively engaged in supporting them. In an update on the website of the Diocese of Egypt with North Africa and the Horn of Africa, the Rt. Rev. Grant LeMarquand, the assistant bishop in the Diocese of Egypt, described some of the recent work that had been carried out, from providing food to helping restore weather-damaged churches, including the Holy Family Anglican Church which serves refugees in the Ethiopian town of Dima.

“These churches in the camps serve not only as worship spaces, of course, but as multi-purpose community gathering places,” LeMarquand said.

The diocese has also sent funds to churches in the Ethiopian towns of Tiergol and Matar to help them buy locally available food. “The local churches there have managed to buy food locally and get it to refugees awaiting ration cards,” LeMarquand said. “The Matar congregation also asked for some Nuer language liturgies, hymn books and Bibles. We gave them liturgies and two English Bibles, but we have no Nuer Bibles available in the country at the moment. We gave them one hymnbook and will get them more soon.

“We are told that the refugees in these three places have now been processed by the UNHCR and 1,000 a day are now being moved to a new camp called ‘Pinyudu 2′ – Pinyudu 1 is an old camp where almost 70,000 ‘permanent refugees’ already live.

“We have at least 10 churches in the Pinyudu area already – the new camp will have as many as 75,000 people, so we will need several new churches. As soon as the people are moved, our local clergy (refugees themselves) will be able to contact the newcomers, find the Anglicans and help them to establish new congregations.

“I know that there are at least a couple of South Sudanese clergy and some lay readers among those newcomers going to Pinyudu 2.”

The Church of England has issued a prayer for the refugee crisis:

Heavenly Father, you are the source of all goodness, generosity and love.

We thank you for opening the hearts of many to those who are fleeing for their lives.

Help us now to open our arms in welcome,and reach out our hands in support.That the desperate may find new hope, and lives torn apart be restored.

We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ Your Son, Our Lord, who fled persecution at His birth and at His last triumphed over death.


WCC urges responsibility for and support to the refugees in Europe

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:40am

[World Council of Churches press release] In the wake of recent crisis with the refugees in Europe, it is “absolutely and critically necessary that all European states take their proper responsibility in terms of reception and support for people seeking refuge, safety and a better future for themselves and their families. This cannot be left only to the states where they enter first,” says the World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary, the Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, in a statement issued on Sept. 4 from the WCC headquarters in Geneva.

“Today, Europe – both West and East – is being tested on the strength of its commitment to human dignity and rights. This is a test of our human values and Christian legacy,” he said.

Tveit continued, “Today the countries of Europe are confronted with the worst refugee crisis since the Second World War. But compassion and action seem to be tragically insufficient to meet the pressing need. This is so despite the tragedies reported daily from the shores and borders of Europe – let alone from the countries from which these people have been forced to flee by conflict, oppression and extreme poverty.”

“Taking responsibility for human beings in desperate need must be done without discrimination on any criteria other than their needs. We are shocked to hear of some countries rejecting refugees on the basis of their religion.”

The WCC general secretary went on to say that the “WCC encourages churches in countries of arrival, transit and ultimate destination in their efforts to welcome the stranger, and to model a compassionate response to people in such desperate need.”

“We need ecumenical cooperation in these efforts, in order to ensure that they make the greatest possible contribution to alleviating this terrible suffering,” Tveit added.

Read full text of the WCC statement on refugees in Europe

Migration and social justice

Website of the ACT Alliance

WCC member churches in Europe

Interview with the new Secretary General of the Anglican Communion

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:36am

Photo: ACNS

[Anglican Communion News Service] Meet the Most Rev. Josiah Idowu-Fearon, the new secretary general of the Anglican Communion.

What was a defining moment in your ministry up until now?

The defining moment in my ministry of building bridges between Christians and Muslims was the day I broke down weeping while presenting my essay on “The Status of a Non-Muslim in an Islamic State” to my class in Birmingham in 1981. It was crystal clear to me that the Lord was calling me to the ministry of promoting a culture of respect and understanding between these two religious communities.

What do you bring uniquely as a Nigerian to this leadership role of a global Christian communion?

As a Nigerian I hope to bring to this new rolethe ability to maintain highly productive, positive relationships with a range of stakeholders and partners in a multi-cultural, international framework of complex relationships and policy. In my twenty-five years as bishop, I’ve learned a culture of respect for people with different opinions and the promotion of peaceful coexistence through the discipline of dialogue.

Some have sounded the death knell for the Communion due to disparate understandings of certain biblical teachings. Is unity in diversity possible, can the Communion encompass all who call themselves Anglican/Episcopalian?

A major problem in the Communion is that we have lost the Anglican theological understanding of the Church as explained by Richard Hooker, William Palmer and other [classical] Anglican [theologians].

There is therefore a need to re-think: are we willing to be committed to this specific ecclesiological understanding or do we desire to leave and join other groups with a different theology of the Church?

I think we should stay within and fight for what will bring glory to the Lord and not divisions. If, on the other hand, Anglicans – lay, clergy and bishops – believe it is time to change this specific way of being church, a forum for well-informed debate should be provided for the three houses.

What do you see as the biggest growing edge for the Anglican Communion in the next five years?

The biggest area of potential of the Communion lies in the 70% of Anglicans who represent the Anglican via media, or“middle way”, as expounded by Richard Hooker.

I would like to improve networking, focusing on this group, and at the same time encourage every Anglican to be an agent of change in whatever part of the Communion the Lord has placed her or him.

Debating issues is a characteristic of Anglicanism. We need to promote this culture among all so that the bishops play their role better as leaders who listen and take decisions on issues based on what their members have had the opportunity to contribute.

What do you think will be the steepest learning curve for you personally?

Achieving consensus and seeing each other as members of the same family, [providing checks and balances for] each other and preventing arrogance and condemnatory spirits. This will certainly be tough but not unachievable.

What excites you about this new ministry?

We do not know each other in this Communion. I am excited to promote inter-diocesan and provincial visits to synods and conventions, and local ways of making the Gospel relevant. I believe the Communion will become healthier if there is a growing understanding of our diversity.

An expanded version of this interview was printed in the August Issue of Anglican World, the Anglican Communion’s quarterly magazine. Subscribe to Anglican World for more stories and reflections from the global Anglican Communion.

Statement from the Anglican Provincial Secretaries’ Conference

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:31am

[Anglican Communion Office] Provincial Secretaries from around the Anglican Communion met in Dublin from 27 August to 3 September at the generous invitation of the Church of Ireland. This was the eighth in a series of informal meetings started in the 1980s.

Representatives from 27 Provinces (see below) and from the Church of Ceylon attended and several others sent apologies because of prior commitments, illness or visa difficulties. Nearly half of those present had taken up their present roles since that last meeting in 2011.

The conference programme was designed to:

  • Increase Provincial Secretaries’ understanding of the life of the Communion
  • Contribute to their professional development
  • Facilitate sharing of experience and information on issues of common concern
  • Give an insight into the work and witness of the Church of Ireland

The main theme for the conference was Reconciliation. As well as being a key strand in the work of the Church of Ireland for many years, this is one of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s personal priorities for his ministry. The Archbishop, the Most Reverend & Right Honourable Justin Welby, addressed the conference, took questions and led a Bible study. He reflected on the present state of the Communion following his visits to all provinces in 2013 and 2014.

Other speakers at the conference included the Archbishops of Armagh and Dublin (the Most Reverend Dr Richard Clarke and the Most Reverend Dr Michael Jackson) , the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion (the Most Reverend Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon), the Bishop of Derry & Raphoe (the Right Reverend Kenneth Good), the Dean of St Anne’s Cathedral Belfast (the Very Reverend John Mann), the Director for the Anglican Alliance-Development, Relief and Advocacy (the Reverend Rachel Carnegie) and Mrs Gillian Kingston, who has been Lay Leader of the Methodist Church in Ireland. Other members of the Anglican Communion Office also contributed significantly to the programme.

Exchanges on the distinctive mission challenges faced by each of the Provinces were lively, open and conducted in an atmosphere of mutual respect. Current initiatives to address issues of common concern including inter-religious conflict, persecution of minorities, climate change, gender injustice, poverty and people trafficking were discussed. Possible issues for consideration at next May’s meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council were identified.

Provincial Secretaries were strengthened in the bonds of friendship through worship, Bible study and the opportunity to participate in local church services on the Sunday. They committed themselves to continue to uphold each other in prayer.

Provinces represented: Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia; Australia; Bangladesh; Brazil; Canada; Central Africa; Central America; England; Hong Kong; Indian Ocean; Ireland; Japan; Jerusalem and Middle East; Kenya; Korea; Mexico; Myanmar; North India; Pakistan; Scotland; South America; Sudan; Tanzania; TEC; Wales; West Africa; West Indies.

Standing Committee issues statement on South Sudan

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:03am

[Anglican Communion Office] The Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council issued a statement on South Sudan at its meeting today, 3 September, in London.

The full text of the statement follows:

Statement on the South Sudan

Meeting in London today the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council[1] (ACC) heard reports from South Sudan.

We rejoice that a peace agreement for the South Sudan has been signed. Responsibility now falls on the leaders in South Sudan to implement the agreement fairly and generously, seeking justice not advantage, peace not personal gain.

A process of reconciliation must begin urgently and we support the churches of all denominations in their work for reconciliation. It is essential that sufficient security is created for churches and other civil society groups to disseminate and communicate the contents of the peace agreement to the people of South Sudan.

Responsibility falls on the neighbouring countries and the African Union to support this fledgling agreement.

Responsibility also rests with the international community and above all the major countries with historic involvement in the area, such as the USA, the UK and Norway, as well as France and China, to use their good offices and influence to ensure that peace takes root.  We ask that the work and capacity of the UN in the South Sudan be strengthened.

We pray for the churches in South Sudan, who have played such an important part in the campaign for peace, and especially in the care of the hundreds of thousands of victims caught up in the fighting.

Bishop James Tengatenga (Chair of the ACC)

Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

[1] The ACC is a body made up of elected lay and clergy representatives from every Anglican Province in the world, representing more than 80 million Christians in 165 countries. The ACC is one of four bodies that oversee and co-ordinate the work of the Anglican Communion (called Instruments of Communion). The other three are the Primates’ meeting (the leaders of each Province), the Lambeth Conference and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Download the statement in PDF format.

Standing Committee issues statement on Burundi

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 7:02am

[Anglican Communion Office] The Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council issued a statement on Burundi at its meeting today, 3 September, in London.

The full text of the statement follows:

Statement on Burundi

Meeting in London today the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council[1] (ACC) heard reports from Burundi.

We deplore the situation of insecurity that prevails in Burundi. We call on  those in leadership to put the needs of the poor and vulnerable ahead of their own interests. We call on the UN, the African Union  and the East African Community to renew all possible efforts to support peace.

We call on Christians of all denominations to pray fervently for Burundi, and we call on the leaders in Burundi earnestly to seek peace and pursue it and especially to call the various political leaders to resume immediately serious and inclusive dialogue.

Reconciliation is always a demanding process, but bears fruit in saved lives and stable communities. May Burundi be blessed with leadership that brings true and generous reconciliation!

Bishop James Tengatenga (Chair of the ACC)

Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

[1] The ACC is a body made up of elected lay and clergy representatives from every Anglican Province in the world, representing more than 80 million Christians in 165 countries. The ACC is one of four bodies that oversee and co-ordinate the work of the Anglican Communion (called Instruments of Communion). The other three are the Primates’ meeting (the leaders of each Province), the Lambeth Conference and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Download the statement in PDF format.

2015 Anglican Communion Standing Committee Bulletin – Day 4

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 6:59am

[Anglican Communion Office] The Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) is meeting 3-6 September at the Anglican Communion Office (ACO) in London. [The members of the Standing Committee can be seen at]

The Standing Committee focused on finances, administration and strategic planning on the final day of its 2015 meeting.

Finance and Administration Committee report

Mr Timothy Trimble, Director for Finance and Administration, and Mr Michael Hart, financial consultant and Vice-Chair of the Finance & Administration Committee, presented the Finance and Administration Committee report.

The committee approved the recommendations of the Finance and Administration Committee, including approval of 2014 financial reports. They commended the Finance Department for the excellent report and transparency of the accounts.

The committee agreed that an evaluation was needed concerning contributions from the Provinces in relation to funding needs for the work and ways to encourage fuller participation.

The committee discussed the ACO’s tenancy at St Andrew’s House. They commended Ms Ann Quirke, the Warden of Saint Andrew’s House for her care and hospitality.

Strategic planning

The committee devoted a large part of the morning to a strategic planning discussion, reviewing the role of and key priorities for the Anglican Communion Office in the next few years, as the initial phase of an ongoing conversation.

The committee proposed that the ACO functions as a conductor of the Anglican Communion symphony orchestra, promoting harmony towards the reign of God, directing the “section leaders”, the I(i)nstruments of Communion, and orchestrating the score of the Communion’s work. It also has an ambassadorial role, representing the Communion beyond itself to others.

Other business

In other business the committee thanked ACO staff for organising and hosting the meeting. Its members expressed great appreciation to the Most Revd Dr Katharine Jefferts Schori for her service with the Standing Committee and wished her well for the next phase of her ministry.

The committee thanked Mrs Stephanie Taylor, Information and Knowledge Manager; Ms Terri Miller, Interim Editor; and Mrs Christine Codner, Executive Officer for their work in conjunction with the meeting.

2015 Anglican Communion Standing Committee Bulletin – Day 1

Tue, 09/08/2015 - 6:52am

[Anglican Communion Office] The Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) is meeting 3-6 September at the Anglican Communion Office (ACO) in London. [The members of the Standing Committee can be seen at]

All but one member of the Standing Committee, Ms Louisa Mojela, were able to attend this year’s meeting.

During the morning members heard reports on the situation in Burundi and South Sudan, and voted unanimously to issue statements of solidarity.

The committee recognised with gratitude the service of the Revd Canon Dr Alyson Barnett-Cowan as Interim Secretary General of the Anglican Communion from January to June 2015. It welcomed the Most Revd Josiah Idowu-Fearon as Secretary General and thanked the Selection Committee for its work in the appointment process.

The Standing Committee responded positively to the request to recognise the emerging Lusaphone network as an Anglican Communion network.

Members also heard from Compass Rose how financial support is enabling the work and programmes of the Communion.

Secretary General’s report

The Most Revd Josiah Idowu-Fearon gave his first report as Secretary General since assuming that role on 1 July.

Archbishop Idowu-Fearon attended the consecration of the first indigenous bishops in the Diocese of Peru in July, and noted the plans for the diocese of Peru to become its own province. He reported that the visit underlined the role of language in giving a sense of belonging to Communion and the continued need to explore ways of increasing the linguistic inclusiveness of the Communion.

Archbishop Idowu-Fearon attended the recent meeting of the provincial secretaries in Dublin. The gathering is an important opportunity to build relationships and hear about life and witness in the different contexts of the Communion.

The Secretary General also visited the Primate of the Episcopal Church in Jerusalem & the Middle East, the Most Revd Dr Mouneer Hanna Anis, to explore opportunities to meet with primates and bishops at the planned Global South conference in October.

Archbishop Idowu-Fearon noted with gratitude the diverse work that Anglican Communion Office staff is doing. He highlighted the ongoing need to secure stable funding, in particular for interfaith, UN representation and communications work, and adequate support for staff so that they can serve the Communion better.

Mission Cluster

Today the committee heard presentations from the ACO’s Mission Cluster—comprising the Anglican Alliance, the Mission Department, the Department for Women in Church & Society, Continuing Indaba/Living Reconciliation and the Anglican Communion representation at the UN in Geneva.

The Anglican Alliance

The Revd Rachel Carnegie presented on the work of the Anglican Alliance, which is celebrating its fourth anniversary sharing God-given gifts within the Communion in the areas of relief, development and advocacy. The continuing acceleration of crises in the world – Burundi, South Sudan, the migrant situation in Europe – has challenged staff in 2015.

She reported that the Alliance will hold its first regional consultation in Europe, focusing on migration and the response to austerity measures.

She explained the focus in the area of relief to promote solidarity, share needs and support the church response, including the Burundi church’s response to displaced people and churches in the DRC, Tanzania and Rwanda receiving refugees. She reported on the increasing need for pastoral and practical support for church leaders in crisis situations.

Development initiatives centre on sharing skills and expertise through consultations and mutual visits such as the Commonwealth Fellowship scheme and the Agents of Change programme. She shared how churches in Africa are working to ensure food security for children, with support from CAPA and, increasingly, other parts of Communion.

Advocacy work looks to bring information from local churches to the leadership level and build skills. An example was the G20 summit in Australia in 2014. The church in Australia supported Pacific Island advocacy work in a successful push to put climate change on the agenda, with subsequent commitments to action. A current focus is the UN climate change summit in Paris in December.

The Alliance continues to collaborate with Anglican Communion networks and representation at the United Nations.

Mission Department

The Revd John Kafwanka, Director for Mission, reported on the June meeting of the Anglican Witness core group during which they shared good practice examples and reflected on mission trends.

A “season of emphasis” on intentional discipleship and disciple-making is being proposed, with the aim of equipping the members of the churches of the Anglican Communion to more effectively live and speak their professed faith in their everyday lives.

Mr Kafwanka said a particular concern is to pass faith on to the next generation and place young people at the centre, as well as bring about renewal in the life of the Church including liturgy, prayer life and preparing new leaders.

Continuing Indaba and Living Reconciliation

The Revd Dr Phil Groves presented developments in Continuing Indaba, which aims to inspire all Anglican to live as reconciling agents in church and the world. He reported that Continuing Indaba process models are being picked up and Living Reconciliation is enabling change in individuals and communities.

Dr Groves told the committee how intra-provincial realities are being energised by links across the Communion. Continuing Indaba is showing that reconciliation has to be done locally but also has to be Communion-based. He said the challenge is to keep providing inspiration and resources.

Women in Church and Society

The Revd Terrie Robinson reported that gender violence has been a key focus of the Women’s Desk. She has continued her work with the We Will Speak Out Coalition and involvement in the 16 Days of Activism against Violence and Women and Girls. She is supporting Anglican efforts to raise the broader issue of gender justice as a Gospel-issue. She is collecting tools for transformation on the Anglican Communion website. She accompanied the Anglican Communion delegation to the 59th session of UN Commission on the Status of Women.

A South Asia conference of the International Anglican Women’s Network will take plan in October.

Ms Robinson noted that the newly-launched International Faith Movement for Gender Justice will help build capacity to tackle gender injustice through regional workshops for church leaders.

Representation of the Anglican Communion at the UN

The Revd Canon Flora Winfield, Anglican Communion Representative to the United Nations institutions in Geneva, echoed the Anglican Alliance report of more and increasingly dire humanitarian emergencies, and noted that this is leading to the exhaustion of humanitarian effort both financially and personally. However, there is now a huge readiness on the UN’s part to work with churches and faith-based organisations.

One focus of work has been to take forward the “Welcoming the Stranger” initiative through advocacy, looking at the role of faith communities in the global movement of peoples and building the spiritual capacity to receive migrants, refugees, and other displaced persons. Canon Winfield reported that bible studies are being developed for Anglican Communion use during Lent 2016.

She is also working on birth registration and issues around statelessness, together with the International Anglican Family Network, and addressing the new dynamic of non-state actors in conflicts.