New Diocese & Bishop in New Zealand
In May 2018 the General Synod for the Anglican Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia passed a resolution which would allow churches in New Zealand to bless same-sex relationships. Since then twelve churches have left and with support from Gafcon Australia and the Gafcon Lawyers Task Force network, a new extra-provincial diocese has been set up. The twelve churches have formed the Church of Confessing Anglicans Aotearoa/New Zealand and released a statement,
"By the grace of God we are a new Anglican Diocese in these Islands, standing firmly in Anglican faith and practice, and structurally distinct from the Anglican Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia.”
At the Inaugural Synod of the new diocese, they elected their first bishop, the Rev’d Jay Behan, Vicar of St Stephen’s Anglican Church, Christchurch described as: “a man of humility and grace, committed to the authority of the Bible and the Lordship of Jesus. He is an excellent preacher and caring pastor and will serve and lead the Diocese as together we seek to reach these Islands with the transforming power of the gospel.”
The statement goes on to say: We were delighted to receive greetings from many Anglicans around the world, and particularly from Archbishop Foley Beach, Chair of the Gafcon Primates, who wrote and conveyed the text of a motion passed at their recent meeting in Sydney,
"The Primates’ Council thanks God for the courage and faithfulness of those churches and individuals in New Zealand who are remaining as Anglicans in the faith as we have received it, as they establish a new Anglican diocese. The Council gladly endorses the new Diocese, recognizes it as authentically Anglican, declares itself to be in full communion and celebrates our common life. The Council encourages the participation of Gafcon bishops in the consecration of the new Bishop, once duly elected for the Diocese."
Also in this issue:
- Primates announce Bishops' 2020 Conference
- Gafcon Sunday – 11 years
- April to June 2019: What happened...
- Fuel for Prayer
- Bishops' Training Institute 5
- Richard Bewes
- New 10th Network: The Suffering Church