Gafcon General Secretary meets with faithful Anglicans in England.

Paul Donison

Bishop Paul Donison took over from Archbishop Ben Kwashi in the Gafcon role in November 2023, and remains Rector and Dean of Christ Church, Plano, Texas. He was in London and Oxford May 13-16, meeting with a number of senior orthodox clergy and laity from within the C of E, as well as leaders from Anglican Network in Europe. Bishop Paul said: 
“I’ve been encouraged by meeting such a variety of godly leaders who are determined to contend for biblical faith within the Church of England. It’s humbling that they made the time to help me understand the complexities of the situation here on behalf of Gafcon. There’s a widespread recognition that Gafcon can provide helpful support, but also maybe more than that – it will take sacrifice and wisdom, and these strong and strengthening relationships will be key to our ongoing partnership in the gospel. Pray for us as we seek to work this out together, by grace and for his glory.”
Anglican Primates meeting in Rome (official press release here)
Archbishop Laurent Mbanda, Chair of the Gafcon Primates Council, has made a statement on the Rome meeting (April 26-May 3) which he and 11 other Primates did not attend. The fracture in the Anglican Communion continues to deepen, because of  “more than 25 years of repeated departures from the authority of God’s Word”. Mbanda says: “…unity is not simply a matter of institutional belonging or cultivating attitudes of ‘mutual respect.’ …It is only as we agree on the truth and authority of Scripture, therefore, that we can be one as Jesus prayed.”
Conservative Anglican leaders have challenged the authority of the Primates’ Meeting in Rome, arguing that it is no longer representative of the worldwide Communion, reports Hattie Williams in Church Times.
Primates in Rome
David Virtue comments
While the 32 primates looked impressive in a photo op, the deeper truth is that the dozen or so primates not present represented the largest provinces in the Anglican Communion with the greatest worshipping numbers.
The message being conveyed was clearly a growing convergence between Canterbury and Rome:
"The Lord calls each of us to be a builder of unity and, even if we are not yet one, our imperfect communion must not prevent us from walking together," stated Francis, echoing themes he has used in the not infrequent ecumenical gatherings he attends alongside Welby.
Anglican Futures asks: Was it the biggest boycott ever? Is Justin Welby looking to reunite with Rome?

Church of England, LLF and the evangelical response
How should faithful Anglicans relate to the Church of England in the light of the trajectory of its leadership away from orthodoxy? Two senior clergy and former colleagues, who are completely aligned in agreement on the gospel and biblical ethics,  share their different views on what to do.
Stay in, and contend for a better future? Charlie Skrine, senior minister of All Souls Langham Place, tells Dominic Steele of The Pastor’s Heart podcast that he believes the bishops can be persuaded to come to a ‘settlement’ with the orthodox.

Charlie Skrine 3  Rico Tice

Leave for another home? Rico Tice resigned as Associate Minister of All Souls in August 2023 after serving at the church for 28 years alongside developing and leading the Christianity Explored international evangelistic ministry. He told Evangelicals Now that although he worships at an International Presbyterian church very near his new family home, “I remain deeply committed to the Global South model of world Anglicanism”. Rico remains on the Gafcon GBE Council of Reference.
LLF latest: The Church of England has announced the members of the three groups who will try to work together to take the LLF process forward, in the areas of Pastoral Guidance for clergy same sex couples, Prayers of Love and Faith, and Pastoral Provision for those who disagree with using the prayers.
On 17th May Church Times reported of an “emerging proposal… to proceed with stand-alone services of blessing for same-sex couples without necessarily pursuing full synodical authorisation.” Those who do not agree with the changes might be able to “request care from a bishop who shares their doctrinal views”. CEEC and the Alliance have responded with videos and statements. (Also here).
Andrew Goddard, writing in Psephizo, lays out, in a long and typically carefully and clearly argued piece, that while the Church of England bishops and General Synod may have permitted changes in practice at local level, they do not and will not have sufficient majorities to formally change the doctrine that validates these and further changes (eg as proposed, allowing clergy in same sex relationships to have civil marriages, and eventually, same sex marriage in church). This will lead to ongoing conflict. Goddard’s solution for a ‘settlement’ is for the Church of England to retain the current teaching about sex and marriage and for revisionists to have special provision. [Editor’s note: a full change of doctrine looks likelier than this outcome.]

Church in Wales

It was announced in January that a man in a same sex relationship would be appointed as Assistant Bishop of Bangor. After the consecration took place in May, the main focus of interest was on the presence of an evangelical Bishop from the Church of England who took part in the laying on of hands (full details here, including +Jill Duff’s response, from Church Times).

Many faithful Anglicans around the world are confused and dismayed by the participation in this consecration by a Bishop whose personal views are known to be orthodox, and who has been looked up to as standing firm for orthodoxy in the current conflict over sexuality. Gafcon GBE urges prayer for Anglicanism in Wales, as it supports Church in Wales clergy and congregations at the local level seeking to be faithful to the gospel in the context of uniformly apostate leadership, and also supports the development of new expressions of Anglicanism outside the Church in Wales, under the Anglican Convocation in Europe (ACE).

Sex and gender, gospel and culture

‘Conversion practices’ and abortion – politicians try again to remove all restrictions to abortion, and to introduce legal prohibitions to orthodox Christian ministry and free expression of opinion. This time it is in the form of proposed amendments to the new Criminal Justice Bill:
Parliament to vote on abortion being allowed up to birth, by Alicia Edmund, Evangelical Alliance
Statement from Anglican Network in Europe on abortion
The Anglican Church has always maintained a firm and consistent belief, rooted in scripture, in the sanctity of life from conception to natural death.
As the Criminal Justice Bill comes to Parliament, we want to reaffirm our position that, precious and valuable to God, every human being has value and dignity from conception…we do not support a change in the law which makes having an abortion easier…

Babys feet
 ‘Conversion practices’: Overview of the threat from proposed new laws to family life, freedom of speech and freedom to teach the authentic Christian faith, from Christian Institute.
Video from the ‘Greater Love’ group, seeking to promote the goodness of the bible’s teachings on sex and marriage, warns that the proposed new laws are deliberately aimed at suppressing orthodox Christian teaching.
Statement from Greater Love:
If such legislation is enacted, it would create a conflict for orthodox Christian ministers in all denominations between submission to government and obedience to God. Christians are the most law-abiding of citizens. Nevertheless, our duty to God is higher still, and we will not cease to fulfil it even if threatened by the law.
Meanwhile the Ozanne Foundation, the LGBT advocacy organisation run by long time successful lobbyist of bishops and former General Synod member Jayne Ozanne, has received six figure sums from government departments. Ozanne, who opposes the findings of the Cass Report, saying that they will harm transgender people if implemented, is also a prominent campaigner for a hard line ban on ‘conversion practices’.
Ian Paul (Psephizo) reviews reviews the latest pastoral document about transgender from the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales, and asks “why has the Church of England been incapable, for many years, of making this kind of clear, needed, and helpful statement?”, and states “What we lack is any depth of theological wisdom in our bench of bishops, and a lack of coherence: many of our bishops don’t know or understand or believe the doctrine of their own church.”

Church Life

What is Christian community and how do we form it? Rollin Grams on his blog ‘Bible and Mission’, gives detailed insights from the Scriptures, and what is known about the early church and more recent history.

What is Christian community and how do we form it? Rollin Grams on his blog ‘Bible and Mission’, gives detailed insights from the Scriptures, and what is known about the early church and more recent history.
How do we develop Christian community?
The church as extended household



 Lausanne graph
The Lausanne Movement for World Evangelization has released a major report on the current status and potential future of mission in advance of a conference later this year:
What will the Church and the world look like in 2050? Lausanne Movement identifies “gaps and opportunities” for global mission. The concept of “polycentric mission” threads a key document for the L4 Seoul congress in September with 10,000 delegates from across the world. Evangelical Focus reports.
Four themes from the ‘State of the Great Commission’ report, by Trevin Wax, The Gospel Coalition
Christian revival: fantasy or reality? Discussion on UnHerd live hosted by Freddie Sayers, featuring Elizabeth Oldfield. Justin Brierley and Alex O’Connor. Brierley believes that as more high profile influencers talk about faith and even testify to conversion to Christ, this suggests that the era of complete dominance of secularism may be coming to an end. Faithful Christians must pray that if there is a shift like this, it would lead to hearts being open to the gospel, not just a rise in Islam and alternative spiritualities.

Points for prayer: summary

  • May faithful Anglicans continue to obey God’s word with the Spirit’s help, to use the Spirit’s gifts among all Gods people across the whole international body of Christ, and may we be open to fresh infilling as we do good works prepared for us in advance.
  • Pray for wisdom, compassion and boldness for faithful leaders in the Church of England, and Anglicans in other jurisdictions under Gafcon.
  • Pray for gospel witness among bible-believing Anglicans in Wales Church in Wales, and ACE).
  • For united and clear witness by the church as the sanctity of human life and concepts of marriage and male and female are under threat in society.
  • For the work of Gafcon-aligned Provinces around the world, proclaiming Christ and showing mercy to the needy.


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