The Anglican Communion Network (ACN) – the network of conservative Anglican congregations in the U.S, called for a Day of Prayer and Fasting on Thursday, August 5, 2004. The day marks the first anniversary of the confirmation of Gene Robinson as the first active homosexual bishop of the Episcopal Church USA (ECUSA) and the beginning of the “growing turmoil” within the worldwide Anglican Communion.
“The bishops pointed to the growing turmoil within ECUSA as well as the divisive and chaotic fallout from decisions made at General Convention that have plunged the Anglican Communion into a crisis situation affecting both domestic and ecumenical relations,” the ACN wrote in its statement announcing the Day of Prayer.
The A CN, which began early this year, was established in response to Robinson’s consecration; many dioceses in the U.S. have rejected Robinson’s election as being biblically sound, and called on the bishops in the ECUSA to retract the decision.
“The flow of support, relationships with host provinces and the integrity of teaching of missionaries around the world has also been damaged by the Episcopal Church’s unilateral decisions to move forward on its social agenda,” the AC N wrote in its press release.
“Participating in the Great Commission has become more difficult now, versus a year ago, for many missionary movements. In an effort to rebuild awareness and commitment to global missions, the ACN bishops are encouraging parishes to dedicate their services on August 8 to recognition of missions through special preaching, prayers, and designation of collections to help meet the needs of missionaries,” the statement continued.
Some 40 million of the 77 million worldwide Anglicans have rejected fellowship with the ECUSA because of Robinson’s consecration. The ACN therefore set August 8, 2004, as a day to recognize and prayerfully support global missions whose ministries and resources “experienced the negative repercussions” of Robinson’s election.