I’ve been compiling some quotes and Tweets from the past 2 days, that give a bit of a flavor of GAFCON so far. These are shaping my thinking about “Why Should We Care About and Pray for GAFCON?” – the series I began this morning and will continue later in the week.
Abp. Wakubala of Kenya in his opening address, October 22:
It is quite impossible for us to experience worship and fellowship like this and ignore the global scope of the gospel. This is God’s revealed truth and saving for all people in all times an the Anglican Communion at it best demarcates this reality. Historically its origins lie in the expansion of the English speaking world, but here we are in Africa where, as elsewhere, the gospel has taken root in very different cultures. This is the Global Anglican Future conference because biblical Anglicanism is by its very nature global – not merely because of our history, but because the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus Christ is to ‘all nations’ (Matt28:19).
Apb. Peter Jensen (Oct 21):
Our task is repentance from “captivity to the world”, and recovery of the true Gospel which leads to transformation. “We are here to support each other especially where there is false teaching in the church, and where there is poverty and persecution.” … But a word of warning: “We can plan a conference, but what is God’s plan? What is he going to do? Something different and unusual? How will God manifest his glory here?”
ACNA GAFCON daily digest Oct 21
GAFCON is about proactively moving forward in common ministry, rather than waiting for other people to do something. It was an explicit reference to the failure of the Anglican Communion’s structures; the same failure that Archbishop Welby had noted the previous day. Bishop Jensen reiterated the truth about Gafcon’s founding: It isn’t a movement that is leaving the Anglican Communion; it is a gathering that, refusing to be paralyzed by a lack of unity, is focused upon the glory and holiness of God.
An Analysis by Andrew Symes at Anglican Mainstream “Why GAFCON” (prior to the conference)
In Kenya we will be reminded that the world is dangerous, the challenges are huge, but God loves the world and its people, and the testimonies of Christians prove it . He has provided the way of salvation through his Son, and he has established his church as a supernatural gathering across racial barriers (Ephesians 2:14-16) through the Gospel (3:6), and as a means of displaying his wisdom to the hostile powers against whom we struggle (6:12), and who one day will be subdued in the new creation (1:10).
Bishop Mark Lawrence of South Carolina, reflecting on GAFCON Day 1:
This evening’s gathering at All Saint’s Cathedral after tea on the grounds was an Opening worship freely flowing with hymns brought by Western missionaries yet touched by an African vigor and sway. It also brought various speakers to the podium to focus our attention on the East African Revival of the 1920s and 30s and which had a second or renewed out pouring of the Holy Spirit in the 1970s. Indeed as the Chancellor of Uganda Christian University reminded us in a stirring address—“We speak of the East Africa Revival as if it is a relic of history. It is not just a relic…not just a movement in history; it is a living movement today.” (Paraphrased from my jotted notes from his address) This movement which has as its center the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the call of the Holy Spirit for believers to “Walk in the Light” and the necessity of repentance, public confession of sins and putting of wrongs right in the believer’s life, as well as a corresponding call for humility and brokenness, was and remains a mighty presence in the Church in Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya and Tanzania.
Australian Delegate Laurel Moffatt:
It is easy in a gathering like GAFCON to see only the things that set us apart. To hear only the different accents, to have the eye caught up in the beads, and the linen, the silk and the embroidery, and to get lost in colour for a while, and then to continue the worldwide pastime of separating pale and dark. To look around and see only difference. Here. And Here. And Here.
But that would be settling for the surface of things as the way things are. And it is not the way things are for believers.
In the first gathering at GAFCON we sing and pray, and listen to the word of God together, because of our communion, not because of our difference. We sing songs of praise to God because we are thankful that there is something that binds us together that is stronger than cloth, stronger than colour.
When hearts are focussed on the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, differences like cloth and colour do not divide us, but rather become part of the joy, part of the vibrant worship of the living God. Our God is alive, and we are alive in him. Alive with rich, bright, brilliant colour.
Assorted Tweets (from October 21, and 22):
Everyday radical discipleship is firmly at the heart of the agenda for #gafcon2013- walking in the death and resurrection of Christ.
Singing “Revive Us Again” with 1,300+ Anglicans from all over the world at #GAFCON2013 in Nairobi. Such a powerful moment.
Being challenged and refreshed by African bishops passionately exhorting #gafcon2013 to say “not I but Christ” what ever the cost.
#GAFCON2013 now discussing the importance of the East African Revival. We pray for such a revival in the #Anglican Communion
@gafcon heart of the East African Revival= preaching Christ crucified, real repentance and gospel belief. The old old gospel!
But #GAFCON2013 exists because there are people around the world who believe Anglicanism is a tradition worth preserving. And I like that.
What encourages me most about #GAFCON2013 is that there are 1400 people there who care deeply about being faithful *Anglicans*
As we hear from one another of the challenges facing the Communion let us not forget that darkness does not overcome our Light
A worldly church will always oppose a church that takes Gods word to the world.
If the church is sent into the world, what a tragedy when the church is infected by the world – Paul Perkins
[a parody ala Screwtape] Gafcon getting dangerous. Too many calls for solid gospel teaching and solid training. Bad for business. Love, Satan X
Amazing testimonies of godly Anglicans standing for Jesus in horrendous situations around the world. Praise God for them
Biblical repentance is about being horrified at ourselves and hoping in Christ. The Western church is teaching the opposite.
Revival does not begin with a church. Revival begins with submission and repentance to Christ. “Revival begins with you!”
Who is here. People from: Argentina, Bermuda, brazil, Burundi, Canada, chile, Congo DR, Fiji, France, Gambia, India, Iran, Ireland … Israel, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Namibia, NZ, Nigeria, USA, Pakistan, Paraguay, PNG, Rwanda, Seychelles, … Singapore, South Africa, Sth Sudan, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Uganda, Uk, Zambia, Australia, Mexico, Germany, Sierra Leone