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NOTTINGHAM...AAC blasts Virtue...Provinces rip ECUSA and Canadians over gay sex

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Rarely in the course of the endless conferences that I attend regarding the Anglican Communion, is one given a glimpse into the future. But it happened this time at the Anglican Consultative Council in Nottingham recently.

The 13th annual ACC meeting had an agenda that included listening to the Americans and Canadians talk (one more time) about why they believe homosexuality is good and right in the eyes of God, disinvestment from Israel, Millennium Development Goals, Anglican observations on the status of women at the UN, Baptist conversations, a plethora of housekeeping issues, and why John Peterson, the former ACC secretary general and arch manipulator of the Global South bishops (but hailed by his successor Canon Kenneth Kearon), should be added to the pantheon of Anglican heroes. No one volunteered to paint his portrait.

It was the Fourth Instrument of Unity doing its best to show everyone why it needs to continue to exist, (if indeed it does) and why it needs money from the North American church to stay afloat. "Listening," the now favored buzzword for paying attention to the continuing heartfelt whine of homosexuals, is now the new stream of Anglican consciousness that will carry it forward on the river of hopefulness into a splendid future of sexual enlightenment, courtesy of North American checkbooks.

The archbishop of Canterbury was there sitting in the front row, looking learned and concerned, taking in every word as though it were gospel. His dress code, open-toed sandals, black pants and an open-necked shirt with a cross stuffed into his shirt pocket, had one wag observing that Dr. Williams was dressed in "early Galilean." He mixed easily and comfortably with everyone, including this writer, even though a week earlier he had blasted the Internet and some hard-print media for shameless reporting, speculations, gossip and triviality. However, he looked pale and tired, and admitted to me that only God can cope now with the crisis in the communion. It was his way of saying that it was now out of his hands. Whatever happens, will happen, the Lord's will be done.

One shrewd observer noted that perhaps his willingness to spend a few minutes with this writer might have more to do with the realization that the liberals are losing the battle for the Communion's soul, and it might behoove him to fish from the right side of the boat. We shall know more ere long.

In a moment of candor Dr. Williams pled for the "catastrophic" Anglican communion to hold together in tolerance, if no longer love. But even as he did so, plotting and mutual recriminations erupted over the presence of observers from the U.S. Episcopal Church who had been asked to stay away officially from the meeting and appear only as observers to make their case and leave. The bulk departed but left three of their number behind to schmooze the Communion masses. Orthodox U.S. factions sat at the back of the hall, glowering at each other amid accusations of bad faith.

Of the representatives from the 38 provinces that were there, five were primates, but only two have the sort of clout that could and will decide the Communion's future.

The Most Rev. Peter Akinola of Nigeria and the Most Rev. Bernard Malango of Central Africa sat together, largely stony-faced, listening to the Americans and Canadians make their pitch, one more time, for same-sex acceptance. They were unimpressed, frustrated and clearly angry. They have heard it all before, and they are sick and tired of talk about homosexuality coming from the West while their provinces in the Global South maintain biblical morality and rocket up new converts through mission, evangelism, and discipleship. They resent deeply all the accusations about chicken dinners, money used to manipulate them, and cell phones given them, as though that had anything remotely to do with why they will, in the end, leave the Anglican Communion and form their own more perfect communion, free of explicitly held sexual sin.

The North American acceptance of sodomy is hurting them and their evangelistic efforts, they said in one provincial report after another. They said they are being mocked in their own countries, they are losing their people to other denominations, and Islam is ridiculing them and making fools out of them for their alliance with ECUSA and Canadian Anglicanism. They have had enough of years of talk and "listening." THEY want to be listened to, and they know they won't be, and that is why they will leave the present construction of the Communion. They are done with it. They know the Western Church is full of unbelieving men and women dressed up in high finery with their provinces spiritually and numerically dying. They know it, and they will have nothing more to do with it. They are done talking and listening. They have washed their hands of it.

They have seen the numbers, they know the truth (ECUSA and Canada will never truly repent), and they are readying themselves for the final battle.

The CAPA bishops meet in Alexandria, Egypt, in October of this year, and I have been invited to attend. I hope, for my sins, that I get to write the final epitaph of the Anglican Communion as we know it.

My exclusive interview with Archbishop Malango should be read against the backdrop of these opening remarks; it is a glimpse into the future. I count Archbishop Malango a friend and an honest broker of the Anglican situation. He made it clear that he speaks for his fellow African bishops, and I have no doubt of this truth.

I spoke to both primates at the end of the sessions, and they agreed to let me interview them. Regrettably, Archbishop Akinola was called back to Nigeria on business relating to the tsunami, and for my sins Archbishop Malango gave me a solo interview. And what an interview it was.

He took the gloves off, and what he said was an ultimatum. It is today's lead story.

But the interview caused a major-league backlash from certain conservative quarters in The Episcopal Church. David C. Anderson president of the American Anglican Council, blasted the interview, saying, "David Virtue gets it wrong again! Virtue got it wrong in Dromantine, N. Ireland, when he rushed to print before the Primates had actually agreed on what they were doing. He has gotten it wrong several times when he went with stories on the American Anglican Council." Anderson then said that Archbishop Malango doesn't understand English well enough to know what he was saying in response to my questions. I responded to Anderson accusing him of racism and demanding that he apologize to Archbishop Malango. We shall see. My story and Anderson's letter are posted in today's digest.

And so the question must be asked, why do the Africans talk to VirtueOnline and not say anything directly to Canon Kenneth Kearon the ACC secretary general? The answer is because they are far too polite to speak their minds and reveal their true feelings to people they know don't share their worldview, but they will talk to VirtueOnline from their hearts because they know I will tell the truth and I won't mince words and they can trust me.

They certainly do not trust or expect anything from NZ bishop John Paterson, ACC chair, or Kearon, or any of the Western media like Episcopal Life (known unaffectionately as Episcopal Death), or The Living Church, which is flawed because it tries to be centrist in a church which has no center. The 100 or so ECUSA diocesan publications are, for the most part, house organs that reflect their bishop's mind, and they are mostly revisionist. On the other side of the Atlantic, the Church Times reflects a liberal mind-set, while the Church of England Newspaper rarely sends a reporter any more. The Guardian is so pro-gay that Stephen Bates wouldn't know or acknowledge the truth if it hit him in the face. His story headlined "Vengeance in the Air as Churches Face Expulsion" had even the liberal-oriented official Anglican Communion News Service reporters rolling their eyes and shaking their heads in disbelief. The TIMES and the Telegraph are the best newspapers and can be trusted, for the most part, to give the orthodox a fair shake.

For another out-and-out blast read the report in today's digest by the South East Asian lay representative, Stanley Isaacs. To my knowledge there has never been such a rip at the North American Church. This document was written in conjunction with the archbishop of SE Asia, Yong Ping Chung, and it is a devastating indictment of pansexuality and the damage it is causing the whole Anglican Communion. Here are a couple of choice sentences:

"Episcopal and Canadian churches say that those who insist on innovations and the inclusion of practices and doctrines rejected by the Bible need to realize that they are helping to drag the Church to a slow death. If they cannot accept the true Biblical teaching as the right teaching of the Church, it will be more honest and respectable for them to walk away from the Church and form a community of their own."

And this: "We cannot defend the (ECUSA and Canadian) actions because those actions are blatantly in violation of the Holy Scripture. Not to defend the actions or to even rationalize them begs the question why we should remain in communion with the churches in ECUSA and the Anglican Church of Canada."

His comments dovetail with my interview with Archbishop Malango of Central Africa.

So the Global South primates and bishops stay silent, they speak to themselves, and they speak to me, and what they say is not the spin from the left or even from those on the Episcopal right because they too have agendas that do no necessarily coincide with the primates'.

The American Anglican Council, Ekklesia, and whoever Martyn Minns represents are little more than succubi who draw their spiritual power from the Global South because they cannot get it from within themselves.

They are powerless to effect any change in the ECUSA, unable to hold back rapacious revisionist bishops, fleeing orthodox parishes, beaten down believing priests, and much more, and so they look hungrily towards Africa, Asia, and Latin America for spiritual succor. It is pathetic to watch.

Canon David Anderson's blast at my interview with Primate Bernard Malango is a case in point. Impotent and powerless to change anything, he rages against the night and then turns on his own. It always happens. He and they are powerless to effect any change except to put out press releases saying how bad the whole situation is. That is not news; we have known that for years.

The fiercely raging battle within the Anglican Church over homosexual clergy and same-sex marriage has brought the Communion to the brink of schism; it is only a matter of time before the leaders of the Global South will bring it to an end.

A story out of Nairobi, Kenya reads: "Anglicans in Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda have started a process that could lead to a split within the "mother" Church of England over the homosexuality dispute." You can read that today. It dovetails with my interview with Archbishop Malango.

All talk of "sharing," "debating," "listening," and Griswold's new-fangled episcogibberish like the "spirit of generosity" (now recorded for all time on a template at 815 Second Ave.) is dead on arrival. The book floated by ECUSA's pansexualists "To Set Our Hope on Christ," will not be taken seriously because it is presuppositionally and hermeneutically flawed.

Sodomy is not the "justice" issue that North American Anglicans want you to believe; it is a judgment issue, and judgment begins first with the household of God. The Episcopal and Canadian churches cannot and will not escape the inevitable consequences of their rebellion against the moral order; they have impaled themselves upon the Moral Law of God and, like the Australian thorn bird that searches for thorn trees from the day it is born until it finds one and pierces it into its own heart and sings the most beautiful song ever heard on earth, the North American churches have pierced their own spiritual hearts. Like the thorn bird, they too have sung their final song, but not so beauteously, and now they are dying.

I HAVE POSTED a number of stories from this gathering of Anglican leaders in Nottingham, including one on Israeli divestment. In a nutshell this is what happened. The ACC voted to 'commend' divestment from companies supporting Israel's polices, based on a report on Israel by the Anglican Peace and Justice Network. It was a fudge. No one was happy about it, what with Israel leaving Gaza, some of the wind has been taken out of the Arab sails, but Archbishop Riah (Jerusalem) told me that unless the West Bank situation is resolved it will be back to the drawing boards and the suicide killings will start up again. Read Gledhill's article and the exchange that follows. I am also posting a story by Melanie Phillips of the Daily Mail on the subject.

I will resume reporting from the home front later this week. There is much to catch up on. Please keep this ministry in your prayers. The attacks are fierce from all sides, but I will not be moved to change anything unless the evidence points otherwise.

We are in deep spiritual warfare, the like of which I have never seen both in the churches and in the broader society. How, when and where it will all end I do not know; that is God's business, not mine. I do believe the history books will reserve a footnote to VirtueOnline.

PLEASE consider a tax-deductible donation to this vital ministry. I am able to travel and write the news, bring you frontline reports, commentary and much more only as you support this ministry. I have been invited to Uganda and Central Africa later this year and funds are needed to make that possible.

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All blessings

David W. Virtue DD

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Please send a note to Google asking them to include our site in their news coverage. You can do this by using a form on the following page.

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