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Picture: The Team - Our representatives were Zola Nanana, Charles Qoto, Bishop Bethlehem, Nicolette Leonard, Roger Schärges and Daryl Newton with David Stansbury, Lilian Daniels (attending as AWF Prov President), Tony Nongauza and Sipambo Ludidi.
The theme for the synod was "Building Bridges of Hope", and in his Charge to Synod Archbishop Njongonkulu spoke on this under three sub-headings: 'Building Bridge Builders', 'Bringing Good News for the Poor' and 'Bridges of Hope for the World'.
One of the first items of business dealt with was a measure to change the CPSA name to The Anglican Church of Southern Africa. The measure was passed. Also passed was a motion setting up a task team of specialists to look at enacting a new combined hymn/worship book. This would reflect the diversity of our cultures and styles in music and worship, giving identity to Southern African Anglican worship.
On the Tuesday a motion on socio-economic development, encouraging parishes to focus on popularising the Millennium Development Goals was passed. Also passed was a motion creating an 'Anglican Human Development Fund for Southern Africa'. All dioceses will contribute 0.7% of their annual budget and the CPSA Funding Committee, in association with Hope Africa, will distribute the money. Poorer diocese may request help from it.
During the rest of Synod motions and resolutions were passed on:
HIV/AIDS - a resolution to work tirelessly to eradicate from our churches and communities the sin of stigma which continues to undermine the implementation of an holistic and comprehensive strategy to minister to people infected with, or otherwise directly affected by, HIV and AIDS and to combat further the spread of this pandemic;
TB and malaria - in terms of this motion malaria would be declared a human emergency;
gender desk - a resolution requesting that the Metropolitan set up a gender task team. This team will investigate the possibility of the creation of a Southern African Anglican gender desk;
Youth - this motion asks that bishops give greater attention to the young people within diocese, creating forums to consult with and listen to their views without intimidation. Diocese were also asked to explore the appointing of ASA chaplains to every tertiary institution and also of diocesan youth co-ordinators;
growing the church - encouraging the formation of a network to facilitate the process of sharing of experience, gifts and resources;
debt management - asking bishops to establish financial management programmes that would aim to educate people on proper financial planning and budgeting, as well as the evils of debt. Parishes would also be trained to avoid debt and how to deal with it when it happens.
the dissolution of the Board of Transformation - Hope Africa is to be asked to explore, facilitate and introduce initiatives in the area of transformation within CPSA.
On the Thursday Synod went into conference to listen to presentations given by Bishop Peter Lee of the Diocese of Christ the King and retired Bishop David Russell on the human sexuality debate. Bishop Peter spoke on "Jesus and homosexuality: a reflection ", and Bishop David gave perspectives from his book The Bible and Homosexuality - What is the Spirit saying to the Churches? One of our clerical representatives, David Stansbury told Iindaba, "Bishop Peter gave a very good Biblical exposition of human sexuality. It really spoke to me". Transcripts of both these bishops' talks are available from the diocesan office.
Delegates were then addressed by a mother whose daughter is homosexual and who has now accepted her daughter's lifestyle, a homosexual woman and a homosexual man. All three spoke about their experiences of continuing marginalisation by their families and communities.
Synod reps. have copies of the papers.
Pictures: 1) Men eating, no interuptions please - Important parts of synod are the meal times and Roger Schärges and David Stansbury took their eating seriously. 2) More eating - Bishop Bethlehem and Sipambo Ludidi didn't break from the enjoyment of eating when the camera zoomed in on them.
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