The Church of the Province of Uganda

Willis Road, Namirembe

 

December 16, 2003

The Most Rev. Frank T. Griswold
Presiding Bishop
Episcopal Church of America
815 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017


 
 

Your Grace:

Ref: AN OPEN LETTER TO THE MOST REV. FRANK GRISWOLD

 
 

Greetings to you in Jesus’ name. This letter comes with deep regret and pain over the great loss that your actions have caused. It expresses the strong feelings and concerns of the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, the Provincial Assembly Standing Committee which met yesterday and the Enthronment Organising Committee.

For many years, the Church of Uganda has enjoyed a wonderful partnership with the Episcopal Church in the USA (ECUSA). Sadly, that relationship ended when the General Convention chose to ignore cries from the rest of the Anglican Communion. You officially recognized same-sex unions the Bible forbids, and installed as candidate for bishop someone the Bible clearly shows to be in an unsuitable lifestyle. As a result of those decisions, the Church of Uganda has recognized your departure from the faith and declared:


a) The Church of the Province of Uganda (Anglican) cuts her relationship and Communion with the Episcopal Church of the United States or America (ECUSA) on their resolution and consequent action of consecrating and enthroning an openly confessed homosexual, Gene Robinson, as the Bishop of New Hampshire Diocese in the Anglican Communion; and with any other Province that shall follow suit.


Considering those things, we were shocked to receive a letter from you informing us of your decision to send a delegation to the enthronement of our new Archbishop in January, and your intention for the delegation to bring aid and assistance for the people who live in desperate conditions in the camps in Gulu that you have ignored for years.

Recent comments by your staff suggesting that your proposed visit demonstrates that normal relations with the Church of Uganda continue, have made your message clear: If we fall silent about what you have done promoting unbiblical sexual immorality and we overturn or ignore the decision to declare a severing of relationship with ECUSA, poor displaced persons will receive Aid. Here is our response: The Gospel of Jesus Christ is not for sale, even among the poorest of us who have no money. Eternal life, obedience to Jesus Christ, and conforming to His Word are more important.

The House of Bishops also declared:


(b) Mindful of the fact that there are a number of Dioceses, Parishes and Congregations in the ECUSA, which are opposed to the resolution and action taken by their Convention and are determined to remain faithful to the teaching of Scripture on human sexuality, to those dear brothers and sisters, we extend our solidarity with them and assure them of our continued prayers.

As a result, we would be pleased to receive an official delegation from The Network of Anglican Communion Dioceses and Congregations who remain Committed to Biblical faith and with whom our relationship steadfastly continues.

The Word of God is clear that you have chosen a course of separation that leads to spiritual destruction. Because we love you, we cannot let that go unanswered. If your hearts remain hardened to what the Bible clearly teaches, and your ears remain deaf to the cries of other Christians, genuine love demands that we do not pretend that everything is normal. As a result any delegation you send cannot be welcomed, received, or seated. Neither can we share fellowship or even receive desperately needed resources. If, however, you repent and return to the Lord, it would be an occasion of great joy.


Sincerely,

Rev. Canon Stanley Ntagali
PROVINCIAL SECRETARY, CHURCH OF UGANDA.


Cc: The Most Rev. Dr. Livingstone Mpalanyi-Nkoyoyo
ARCHBISHOP, CHURCH OF UGANDA