Notice of forthcoming Synod of Bishops and Provincial Synod

This press release was issued on 23 September 2010.

Advance Notice: Anglican Church of Southern Africa Synod of Bishops 27-29 September, Provincial Synod 29 September to 2 October

The Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA) will hold its
twice-yearly meeting of the Synod of Bishops from 27 to 29 September,
at the Kopanong Conference Centre, Benoni, East Rand. This will be
followed by the meeting of ACSA’s Provincial Synod, the decision-making
body of the Church, which is held once every three years with Bishops,
clergy and lay representatives from all 28 Dioceses. The Provincial
Synod will commence on the afternoon of 29 September, with an opening
Eucharist. During this the Archbishop of Cape Town, the Most Revd Dr
Thabo Makgoba will deliver his Charge, the address in which he
summarises the life of the Church and the challenges before it. The
Synod will then continue until lunchtime on 2 October.

The main focus of the two meetings will be the presentation
and development of a ‘Vision and Mission Statement’ for the Church.
This arises from the recognition in the late 1990s that the coming of
democracy to South Africa ushered in a new era for ACSA, and with it
the need to consider afresh the heart of the Church’s calling to
mission and ministry within these changed circumstances. Archbishop
Thabo Makgoba has made work on this a priority since he became head of
ACSA at the beginning of 2008. The Provincial Synod will be asked to
endorse the Vision and Mission Statement, and consider how the Province
can make these a reality through Church-wide programmes in eight key
areas that resource and support the activities in these areas among the
parishes and communities of the Dioceses, within the very different
contexts in which they find themselves. (Full details of these are
given below.)

The two meetings will also consider other aspects of the life
of the Church, ranging from pastoral concerns through to socio-economic
and political developments within the countries in which the Church
operates (including recent bread riots in Mozambique, questions around
democracy in Swaziland, and the outcome of this week’s ANC National
General Council in South Africa). Alongside endorsement of the Vision,
the Provincial Synod has before it draft resolutions that range from
clergy training, appointments, care and discipline through to
inter-church relations and the proposed Anglican Covenant. Other
matters under consideration include the relationship between
Traditional Practices and Christianity, the role of women and young
people in the church, and the environment.

This is the first Provincial Synod to be held since Dr
Makgoba became the Archbishop of Cape Town and the Metropolitan (i.e.
head) of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa.

Notes for Editors: The Province of the Anglican Church of Southern
Africa comprises Angola, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa,
Swaziland, St Helena and Tristan da Cunha.

Issued by the Office of the Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town

Inquiries: Sisanda Majikazana on 021-763-1320 (office hours)

Vision and Mission Statement for the Anglican Church of Southern Africa

Vision

The Anglican community in Southern Africa seeks to be

· Anchored – in the love of Christ

· Committed – to God’s mission

· Transformed – by the Holy Spirit

Mission statement

Across the diverse countries and cultures of our region, we seek:

· To honour God in worship that feeds and empowers us for faithful witness and service

· To embody and proclaim the message of God’s redemptive hope and healing for people and creation

· To grow communities of faith that form, inform, and transform those who follow Christ.

Priorities

To make this vision a reality, and to help us to form a comprehensive
response to the many inter-relating socio-economic challenges we face
in our region, we commit ourselves at Provincial level to these
priorities for the years 2011 to 2020:

· Liturgical renewal for transformative worship

· Theological education

· Leadership formation

· Health: HIV and AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis

· The environment

· Women and gender

· Protection and nurture of children and young people

· Public advocacy

Two other themes – transformation, and holistic mission that is rooted
in a full commitment to evangelism – are seen as running through and
undergirding all eight priorities, rather than as matters to be
addressed separately.

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