Bishop of Northern Uganda adds his Support to South Carolina Bishop Mark Lawrence

By Ladson F. Mills III
Special to Virtueonline

Bishop Johnson Gakumba of the Diocese of Northern Uganda has added his name to a growing list of African Anglican Bishops who stand in support of Bishop Mark Lawrence and the Diocese of South Carolina. Although he was not part of the visit of his four African colleagues who spoke to the diocese earlier this month, Bishop Johnson has recently been on an extensive visit to the diocese. On April 15th he spoke with VOL concerning the current controversy.

He was very clear that he, as well as the Anglicans of Uganda stand with Bishop Lawrence as opposed to TEC. He encouraged the people in South Carolina to remain firm in upholding the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To deny the uniqueness of Jesus is wrong he said.

Like his fellow bishops from Africa he reminded South Carolina Christians that in following Jesus there will be suffering but they will not be lost. Although concerns over structure with other Anglican jurisdictions are not unimportant he advised not to be overly worried. In time of trials there is a history within the communion of help from outside jurisdictions when the time is right. The consecration of the first American Bishop Samuel Seabury by Scottish Bishops is just one of many examples

He reminded the diocese that the Church in Uganda has stood firm and suffered. The Ugandan House of Bishops did not attend the last Lambeth Conference and has continually refused to accept any financial aid from The Episcopal Church. Jesus himself was certainly no stranger to controversy but did not compromise with the culture. He urged no compromise with a culture that insists everything is relative.

He stated that just as the bishops of Uganda are in fellowship with Bishop Lawrence so are the Anglican Christians of Uganda in fellowship with their brothers and sisters in South Carolina. Schism is part of following Christ and what they are experiencing is not unusual for those who choose to remain faithful to Jesus.

Ladson F. Mills III is a retired priest with over thirty years pastoral experience. He is retired and lives with his wife in South Carolina. He currently serves as scholar in residence at The Church of Our Saviour, Johns Island. He is a regular contributor to “Virtueonline”

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