More Archbishops Call on Gay Theologian To Step Down

( [email protected] ) Jun 26, 2003 01:23 PM EDT

A meeting of 35 evangelical church leaders from around the world was held recently in Oxford, including leaders of the Church of England Evangelical Council, the conservative group Reform, and the American Anglical Church.

After the meeting, leaders concluded that they urge Dr. Jeffrey John to withdraw his acceptance as Bishop of Reading. "This appointment flouts the mainstream Anglican teaching on human sexuality," they said, according to Times Online. "We believe that if he is consecrated, the unity of the Church of England and Anglican Communion will be disrupted."

Leaders are meeting around the world to discuss this issue on homosexuality within the church. While the evangelist wing of the Church strongly expresses anger towards the appointment of Dr. John, the Bishop of Oxford who had made the appointment, estimates that over half of the House of Bishops are in sympathy with the him.

On the night of June 25, two more Archbishops, the Most Rev. Drexel Gomez of West Indies and Bishop Gregory Venables, Presiding Bishop of the Southern Cone, called on Dr. John to step down, warning of possible schism within the Anglican Communion.

But according to experts, although the 17-million strong Church of Nigeria threatens to split, it is unlikely because most of the funds are supported by the West. Moreover, churches in more developed countries are not fully ready to give up their Anglican fellowship to embrace more liberal values. In any case, conservative leaders from America, England and the developing world are all talking to each other over the issues the Church is facing today.