built on his tough stance against homosexuality." Archbishop Henry Orombi of Uganda succeeds Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini of Rwanda as the Vice-Chairman of the Communion.John Chew, the Bishop of Singapore and Primate of the Province of Anglican Church in South East Asia has been appointed head of the Global South Anglican network at a conference that was held last week in Singapore. He succeeds retired Archbishop Peter Akinola of Nigeria who was in 2006 described by The New York Times as "a man whose international reputation has largely been
The Global South Anglican network is a grouping of 20 Anglican provinces (in Africa, West Indies, Asia and South America) of 38 provinces worldwide and represents about 75 per cent of the 75 million Anglicans globally.
Several provinces of the Anglican Communion severed ties with the American Anglican Church after a gay bishop, Gene Robinson, was consecrated in 2003, an act that caused widespread uproar among conservative and traditional Anglicans, particularly in Africa, a home to more than half of the world’s Anglicans.
In 2008, Anglican leaders from the provinces of Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Nigeria, Southern Cone (South America) and Singapore as well as the Archbishop of Sydney boycotted the once-a-decade world Anglican summit to protest the US Episcopal Church's gay-affirmative stance.
A statement issued on April 23 at the end of the Fourth Anglican Global South to South Encounter in Singapore specifically opposed the election and intended consecration of Mary Glasspool, a partnered lesbian, as a bishop in Los Angeles.
Her election has "demonstrated, yet again, a total disregard for the mind of the Communion. These churches continue in their defiance as they set themselves on a course that contradicts the plain teaching of the Holy Scriptures on matters so fundamental that they affect the very salvation of those involved. Such actions violate the integrity of the Gospel, the Communion and our Christian witness to the rest of the world." The statement read.
The network called on Anglican Communion provinces to "reconsider their communion relationships" with the Anglican Church of Canada and the US Episcopal Church. It said the two provinces must show "genuine repentance" for actions that it said show they "continue in their defiance as they set themselves on a course that contradicts the plain teaching of the Holy Scriptures on matters so fundamental that they affect the very salvation of those involved.
While the Anglican Global South grouping might have been in existence for a longer period, the term is said to have come into more prominent use in 2003 as a result of the dispute caused by the ordination of Rev Gene Robinson – an openly gay non-celibate priest – as a bishop in the Episcopal Church in the United States. This, according to Michael Nai, director and Asian Christianity coordinator of the Centre for the Study of Christianity in Asia, Trinity Theological College who cited several other publications in his 2008 paper titled 'The Global South Anglican: its origins and development'.
Aside from protesting their US and Canadian counterparts' role in electing and consecrating gay and lesbian clergy, many of the African Anglican leaders active in the Communion have strongly advocated the continued criminalisation of gay sex in Uganda, Nigeria and Rwanda.
The Archbishop of Nigeria, Peter Akinola, who had once called the enthronement of a gay bishop a “satanic attack on the church of God,” while Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini of Rwanda, the outgoing Vice-Chairman of the grouping, called the "act of homosexuality a form of moral genocide." Archbishop Henry Orombi of Uganda has been widely criticised for supporting his country's proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill and additionally calling for sexual orientation to be excluded as a protected human right.
In 2007 during the debate on Section 377A, the National Council of Churches of Singapore which then and continues to be under the leadership of Archbishop Chew called on the government to criminalise lesbian sex as it is as "sinful, abhorrent and deviant" as homosexual acts. The statement was carried in the March 2007 edition of the Methodist Message, the official publication of the Methodist Church in Singapore.