11th April 2008
Open Letter to the Leadership Team of GAFCON
Dear brothers in Christ
On 8th April 2008 Changing Attitude reported actual violence carried out against the Director of Changing Attitude in Nigeria, Davis Mac-Iyalla, and against the leader of Changing Attitude Port Harcourt. It also reported homophobic threats of violence against Davis Mac-Iyalla and the Director of Changing Attitude, Colin Coward.
We emphatically do not believe that the GAFCON leadership team incited this violence, is in any way directly responsible for it or supports it.
However, we strongly believe that there is a danger that the perpetrators feel encouraged or justified in their actions by the sometimes strong anti gay language coming from the GAFCON supporters within the Anglican Communion.
It would therefore help enormously if you could recognise that this is happening, and that because of your strongly anti-homosexual theology it is particularly important to stress, loud and clear, that your opposition is held on purely theological grounds only, not because of personal feelings of hatred or dislike.
We would very much welcome a statement from GAFCON confirming that, like all Christians, you deplore any form of anti homosexual violence. Such violence is completely against Christian values, is not what God requires from us, and diminishes everyone.
We would like to remind the GAFCON leadership team that the Windsor Report states that theological opposition to homosexuality is to go hand in hand with listening to the actual experience of gay people, not in order to be converted to a liberal view, but in order to understand our homosexual brothers and sisters better and to recognise them as true brothers and sisters in Christ.
Yours in Christ
Erika Baker Changing Attitude, Bath and Wells, UK
Bill Fraser Inclusive Church Member
Bradley T. Upham USA
The Revd Göran Koch-Swahne, Sweden
Brenda Harrison, Evangelical Fellowship for Lesbian and Gay Christians
Susan Strong, U.K.
Canon Nicholas I. Kerr, Diocese of Rochester
Fr. John-Francis Friendship, Rector of St. Andrew's, Romford, UK
Bronislava Lee, Sydney, Australia
Eirene Clare Smith
Linda Anchell, NSW, Australia
Letter sent to:
Archbishop Henry Orombi (Uganda), Rt Rev Don Harvey (Anglican Network in Canada), Rt Rev Wallace Benn, Lewes (England), Rt Rev Martyn Minns (CANA, USA) Canon Dr Chris Sugden (England), Rt Rev Bob Duncan, Moderator, (Common Cause, USA), Archbishop Greg Venables (Southern Cone), Archbishop Peter Akinola (Primate of all Nigeria), Archbishop Emmanuel Kolin (Rwanda, Provincial Secretary), Archbishop Peter Jensen (Sydney), Archbishop Benjamin Nzimbi (Kenya), Archbishop Justice Akrofi (West Africa), Bishop Michael Nazir Ali (England/ Pakistan).