U.S. bishop writes to Nigerian archbishop

May 2, 2007 at 11:02 AM
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WOODBRIDGE, Va., May 2 (UPI) -- The presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church has asked Nigerian Archbishop Peter Akinola not to install a Virginia rector Saturday to head a new denomination.

"Such action would violate the ancient customs of the church," Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori wrote to Akinola, The Washington Times reported. Her letter also said "such action would not help the efforts of reconciliation that are taking place in the Episcopal Church and in the Anglican Communion as a whole. Such action would display to the world division and disunity that are not part of the mind of Christ, which we must strive to display to all."

At Saturday afternoon's ceremony in Woodbridge, Va., Akinola and four other Nigerian bishops are scheduled to make Martyn Minns the head of the Fairfax, Va.,-based Convocation of the Anglicans in North America. He was consecrated a bishop in Nigeria in August, the Times reported.

Minns told the Times that Jefferts Schori's request was "predictable."

"The truth of the matter is we are in a broken relationship right now and the normal things aren't working," he told the newspaper.

Eleven Virginia parishes, including Minns's, left the Episcopal Church over several issues, including the consecration of a gay bishop.

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