Elder Fu Xianwei (傅先伟) cosies up with primates of the Anglican Global South
Elder Fu Xianwei (傅先伟长老), the chairman of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement (三自爱国运动) and the highest-ranking official of the state-approved Protestant church, has been spotted yesterday in Singapore attending a conference organised by the bishops of the Anglican Global South, a grouping of 20 provinces in the southern hemisphere, representing three-quarters of the world’s 75 million Anglicans that has been threatening to break away from the Church of England over doctrinal disagreements over homosexuality and the role of gay laity and clergy.
In his address to the conference of anti-gay bishops, Elder Fu noted that the Chinese church, like the church in other parts of the world, is “facing many challenges” but that the “Chinese Church is set and ready for proclaiming the Gospel” so “people can emerge as well formed disciples” and as “a Light in China”.
Playing a key role in the Anglican Global South is the virulently homophobic and newly retired Nigerian Archbishop Peter J Akinola, as well as archbishops of mostly impoverished African states like Burundi, Central Africa, the Congo, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, West Africa and Uganda. Archbishop Henry Orombi of Uganda, who was prevented from flying to Singapore from London because of weather conditions, has been under sharp criticism for his stark silence on Uganda’s proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill which seeks to subject gay people to life imprisonment or the death penalty.
Think the Christians vs Gays debate that you see in other parts of the world will not be imported to China anytime soon? Well, think again! Last month, we told you about the State Administration for Religious Affairs’ bewildering decision to allow the anti-gay Democratic member of the Illinois Senate, Rev James Meeks, to preach alongside evangelist Luis Palau in the first gospel rally of its kind in China. And now we hear of Elder Fu seeking strange bedfellows among retrogade Anglican primates from Africa. Concerned Chinese citizens need to pay attention to this.