The Cutting Edge
The Crown Plaza hotel, adjacent to the International Convention Center in Jerusalem, was buzzing with activity. In a downstairs lobby, young delegates and guests of Gafcon 2018 were mingling, enjoying refreshments, and sharing their stories of how they got there. A meeting room held a similar crowd all pushed in together and trying to hear above the noise of friendly conversation what others were saying.
James Flynn, a delegate from Sydney, Australia got up on a chair and gathered everybody’s attention as he began to talk about why he had invited 180 young Gafcon delegates to gather together. It was a chance to meet others and discover that they were not alone. The growing number of Gafcon members in their 20s and 30s displays the message of Gafcon getting through to the next generation, and that the Gospel, ancient and unchanging as it is, is taking root in those who are best able to navigate a modern, fast-paced and ever-changing world.
James Flynn’s charisma and excitement at the opportunity to connect his fellow young adults with one another was contagious. The Rev. Alan Lukabayo, an Anglican priest from Sydney, was there to welcome the group and encourage them with a few words. “There’s a danger that you’ll come to Gafcon and you’ll hear ‘You guys are the future of Gafcon,’” he said, “but that’s not true. You are Gafcon.”
To be Gafcon is to be on the cutting edge of what God is doing in the Church worldwide: shaking up a system no longer able to hold the church together in the unity of the faith. It takes vision, energy, and skill to help make that happen. These young Anglicans are motivated to live this out from wherever they are in the world. The future of Gafcon must reflect the heart of the movement based on who we are today, and who we are is reflected in the many and varied faces of the young Anglicans here, eager to reclaim the face of orthodox Anglicanism, and bring the Gospel to the world.