received during the week of 14 September 2003
out of Africa?
WAS FASCINATED BY THE GUARDIAN'S INTERVIEW with
the Archbishop of Cape Town, Winston Njongonkulu Ndungane,
cited in your weekly news summary. The Guardian described
the archbishop as "[breaking] ranks with fellow African and
developing world archbishops yesterday to denounce their
arrogance and intolerance over homosexuality."
was particularly struck by one quote from Archbishop Ndungane:
'There is a woman waiting to be stoned to death for adultery
in Nigeria and yet we are not hearing any fuss from the leadership
of the church there about that'. That quote deserves world-wide
prominence. I'll be very interested to see how the traditionalists
attempt to respond to it — if they do at all.
Houston, Texas, USA
15 September 2003
from the southern US?
HAVE READ WITH INTEREST each week your letters
concerning Gene Robinson. I have yet to see one which represents
the southern US. (By the way, our Episcopal membership was
increasing in the South before this). We are very upset in
this region of the country about his approval, and look forward
to the meeting of the American Anglican Council in Texas
to provide some hope.
St Luke's Episcopal Church
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
19 September 2003
bedfellows in the States
RECENTLY CAME ACROSS AN ARTICLE concerning Howard
Ahmanson. Using Google, I found some information about Mr.
Ahmanson and his affiliation with the American Anglican Council.
What I found was quite troubling. I wanted to ask if anyone
else has been aware of any of this.
Ahmanson was a board member of the Chalcedon Institute for 23
years. This organization wants the government to adhere to biblical
law, which, includes among other things, the killing of all gays
and lesbians. Ahmanson has publically stated his agenda is 'the
integration of biblical law' into government. He supports many
right-wing groups; most recently the AAC. His support is substantial
enough for the AAC to consider adding his name to their letterhead.
Mr. Ahmanson claims to be worshipping at St. James Episcopal
Church, Newport Beach. Until just recently, the rector of St.
James was Canon David Andersen, who is the current President
and CEO of the AAC.
organization’s name also kept popping up in my research:
The Institute on Religion and Democracy. The IRD also has its
agenda: to challenge the authority of legitimate denominational
leaders, promote schism, and replace the existing structures
with their own brand of right-wing thinking. The President of
the IRD, Diane Knippers, is one of the founding board members
of the AAC. Mrs. Howard (Roberta) Ahmanson has recently been
appointed to the board of the IRD. The AAC and the IRD have the
same identical mailing address.
are the sites where you may read more about this:
This is a PDF file.]
are two conclusions I have come to based on this information;
The AAC inadvertently has formed an alliance with individuals
and organizations whose agenda is a theocratic society in which
the citizens are put to death for "sins." Not aware of the extent
of this agenda, the AAC is only at fault in regard to the lack
of sufficient background checks of their donor base and the organizations
with which they choose to affiliate.
The AAC is fully aware of the agendas of Ahmanson and the IRD,
and supports this agenda, and desires to partnership with them
to form a society in which biblical law becomes the law of the
land. This would make the AAC an arm of the "Christian Taliban" in
hope the first conclusion is the correct one.
Reverend Terry L. Martin
St. Mary's by the Sea, Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey
Hammonton, New Jersey, USA
21 September 2003
Australian link—or perhaps not
A CHRISTIAN AND A GAY MAN I'm
shocked to see that you present www.christianity.net.au as
a good web site with 'a good portion of its material written
others examples: 'The Bible has nothing positive to say about
homosexuality. There are no positive examples of practising homosexuals
and there is no teaching that homosexual acts or lifestyles are
acceptable to God. There is nothing to suggest or imply that
God approves of it'.
'So, irrespective of the social climate, the Bible clearly teaches
that homosexual lifestyles and acts are condemned by God and
that people who practice them will be judged by God'.
will mean that Christians should seek to persuade homosexuals,
and everyone else who is not a follower of Christ, to change
and become one. (Have a look at 2 Corinthians 5:11-21.) It will
also mean that where a homosexual (like anyone else) claims to
be a follower of Christ but lives in a way that denies this,
Christians will have to act in a way that doesn't allow the person
to continue to be mistaken regarding their true position'.
think this kind of web site is inappropriate especially for Episcopalian
Christians, and I hope also for other Christians.
do you think about this?
20 September 2003
note: At Anglicans Online we endeavour to provide links to
sites with all manner of views and perspectives, as long as
there is an Anglican-component and the sites do not advocate
violence and hatred. The quotes excerpted above certainly represent
a traditional position within the Church and do not, in our
view, promote violence or hatred against gay and lesbian people.
HAVE SPENT MY LIFE IN CANONCIAL STUDIES AND THEOLOGY and
now at age 54 I have been given a great opportunity to be
a witness to several events in my lifetime.
I was in high school, my aunt was in an auto accident involving
a drunk driver in Nevada. It was reported that the head-on impact
was 120 miles per hour. The doctor who operated on her said it
was God's hands that did the work; he only watched. She is alive
today because this doctor knew when to stand aside and let God
bring the good from this tragedy.
childhood to manhood I lived under the fear of the cold war.
I was told that at any time we could all be wiped away by an
atomic war. Communism was the great evil in this war. Most of
my life was shaped by this fear, until one day two men decided
to lay aside their differences and seek to find a better and
new way for their children and grandchildren to live. The great
Berlin Wall finally fell because God worked for the good in this
small inch they had given to God in history.
have watched human and civil rights make great strides in our
world because of the good God has brought out of our fallen humanity.
I have suffered in this struggle because I have been black, I
have been white, I have been woman, I have been man, I have been
straight, I have been gay, I have been all things to all persons
so that the Gospel of God might be seen in my life.
my church, our church, the Episcopal Church in the United States,
is being called by God to let the Holy Spirit bring the good
forth from the General Convention of 2003, reminding us that
God is not a respecter of persons. Can we be all things to all
persons so that some might know God in Jesus, the Christ?
A. Flint, PhD
St Columb's Episcopal Church (Ridgeland, Mississippi)
Jackson, Mississippi, USA
16 September 2003
We launched our
'Letters to AO' section on 11 May 2003. All of our letters are
in our archives.