Reverse Colonialism?

Well, the AMiA has found a home, and it is the Congo. You know, the Congo, in Africa. Back in December, the Holy Spirit told Chuck Murphy to leave Africa:

The result, as we saw in the story of Exodus, is that God’s sovereign hand which had led His people into Africa (Egypt) in the earlier Book of Genesis, then took a dramatic turn in the Book of Exodus instructing His people that it was now time for them to leave Africa.

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God then begins to move within the hearts of the Egyptian leadership to make it more and more clear to the people of Israel that Africa (Egypt) could no longer be viewed as their lasting home.

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But now, the Holy Spirit may have changed course, and it is time for AMiA to head back in to Africa.

Let’s hope that Bishop Murphy has cautioned the Congolese bishops against reverse colonialism. They should know that “directing  and shaping what happens in North America is a bad idea.” In fact, it could be “missiologically crazy and practically foolish.” Certainly, the shortened distance to Pawleys Island from Congo should make oversight more effective now.

You may remember that in February, the AMiA and the Congo fervently denied that any connection was in the works (even though I reported here that Kolini flew directly to Congo after the Winter Conference).

However, when queried, Archbishop Isingoma stated he was unaware of any Congolese move to take over the AMiA from Rwanda.  The archbishop and the Congolese House of Bishops “have never received or approved a special partnership with AMiA. I am very surprised to hear that we are sponsoring AMIA actions.”

Doc Loomis in fact was irate at all the “bad reporting” going on.

Ultimately, this move is not surprising. Chuck Murphy fled church discipline, refused to do what GAFCON asked of him, got off the hook, and now gets a new Province to park in, a Province that welcomed some interesting folks lately:

Here’s the full text of the latest from AMiA:

At the close of this year’s Winter Conference, we issued a Communiqué expressing the mind of the gathering. One of the key components and goals of that Communiqué, as well as subsequent communications from our Council of Bishops, was to “diligently seek appropriate jurisdictional connections” with an authentic and orthodox Anglican Communion province. As we continue to celebrate our Lord’s Resurrection during this Easter season, it is a particular joy to report the good news that our goal has now been realized. This week, I received an official letter from Archbishop Henri Isingoma of the Anglican Church of the Congo, receiving me as a Bishop of the House of Bishops in his Province and offering us a new canonical residence. In response to a recent letter from Archbishop Rwaje asking our bishops to translate to another Anglican jurisdiction by the end of this month, I had earlier requested that he send my letters dimissory to the Province of the Congo.

This transfer follows a process of relational reconciliation with Rwanda facilitated by Archbishop Eliud Wabukala. These conversations culminated in our meeting in Johannesburg and the Communiqué in which Archbishop Rwaje agreed to release theAM to develop other jurisdictional relationships. Under our accord with the Province of the Congo, we are now secure and validly attached to the global Anglican Communion. Rooted in the East African Revival, the Province of the Congo [formerly Zaire] was originally joined together as one larger province, which also included Rwanda and Burundi. In 1992, all three were subsequently established as separate provinces. The Anglican Mission’s connection with the Congo began at Winter Conference 2012 when Bishop William Bahemuka Mugenyi generously made provision for scheduled ordinations to go forward.

We are very grateful to Archbishop Henri for his warm welcome to the Province. As we continue to transition toward a Mission Society with oversight provided by a College of Consultors, we remain committed to the multi-jurisdictional model that launched the Anglican Mission in Singapore (the Provinces of Southeast Asia and Rwanda). Toward that end, conversations with other jurisdictions including the Anglican Church in North America will continue.

Now that a new canonical residence provides for our bishops and clergy to transfer from Rwanda to the Congo, I have been asked to facilitate the transition and therefore, requests for transfers should be sent to the Mission Center.

We look forward with great anticipation to the multi-layered process of developing a Mission Society designed to encase our values and facilitate our desire to be a mission, nothing more and nothing less. While we continue our consistent focus on planting churches in North America, our process will include careful consideration of our present structures including the roles of bishops, the Mission Center and its staff, and our Networks as we prepare to develop the constitution and statutes that will ultimately order our common life. We are scheduling several meetings in which we will discuss and seek input from clergy and leaders throughout the Mission to assist us in designing and vetting the shape and specific details of our proposed Mission Society. We expect to complete these conversations by mid-October.

The Council of Bishops and our leadership team are united in a vision to further develop and carry forth an Apostolic/missionary (sodality) call to reach those outside the faith in effective, creative and entrepreneurial ways. This journey is well underway, and we invite and encourage you to celebrate and press on with us.

In Christ,

The Rt. Rev Charles H. Murphy, III

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