‘It is required of stewards that they be found faithful.’
1 Corinthians 4.2
God’s Church really is flourishing and growing at an astonishing rate, especially in the worldwide Anglican Communion. The gospel is still extremely powerful and effective to save (Romans 1.16-17) turning lives from darkness to light. Throughout the Anglican Communion faithful gospel proclamation is bearing tremendous fruit as new churches are planted on an almost daily basis. Central Africa in particular, though exceedingly poor materially, is spiritually wealthy to a degree that our western culture finds hard to comprehend.
Indeed, the vast majority of this numerical growth is occurring in the southern hemisphere or in what has come to be known as the Global South. From 3rd to 8th October 2016 the Sixth Global South Anglican Conference took place in Cairo, Egypt. The theme for this gathering was ‘Found Faithful,’ a marvellous title and accurate description of leaders who are determined to be loyal to their Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. They are words taken from 1 Corinthians 4.2: ‘it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.’
Primates from sixteen Anglican Provinces were present at the conference, as well as Anglican leaders from Bangladesh, USA, Canada, England and Australia. A warm welcome was given to the conference by the President of Egypt, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. He affirmed the important role religious leaders play in bringing peace. The Primates were encouraged by his commitment to affirm common citizenship and promote freedom of religion in Egypt.
The phenomenal growth of these Biblically faithful churches in the Anglican Communion is all the more striking given the worldwide context. Theologically liberal provinces in the Communion (mostly in the West) continue to drift from their historic moorings of Biblical truth. And as a result drastically shrink. The Episcopal Church in America leads the way in dismissing its Biblical heritage and in promoting ever more outrageous practices and behaviour. It is now just a hollow shell of the church it used to be.
Thank God for the movement of his Spirit in the Global South. The Anglican Communion in the South dwarfs the church in the West. Europe has become the new mission field. Surely we must catch the vision of what God is doing internationally and remain faithful where he has put us. At Knockbreda we rejoice in the growth of the gospel and associate ourselves with the faithful witness given by the vibrant majority in the Anglican Communion.