FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
FAQs regarding the Global South for House of Laity meeting on 23rd Jan 2021
The Global South Fellowship of Anglican Churches (GSFA) Executive Secretariat is now anchored by DOS. As the Honorary Director, Bp Rennis provides overall guidance. As the Executive Deputy Director, Revd William Mok handles operational matters. Mr Keith Chua oversees the finances as the Honorary Finance Deputy Director.
The Secretariat provides practical support to the GSFA Primates and Primates Steering Committee such as processing GSFA Membership Applications, planning and organising GSFA General Assembly Meetings and Conferences, fund raising, operating and maintaining a website, liaising with other communion partners and agencies, dealing with inquiries, and such like.
What is the Global South?
The Anglican Global South is a grouping of approximately 25 of the 41 provinces of the worldwide Anglican Communion, with the Anglican Church in Recife, Brazil as a Mission Partner.
The provinces identified with the Global South represent most of the Southern Hemisphere provinces within the Communion, including all those from Africa, South America, Asia and two Oceania provinces.
Global South provinces are characterized by their theological conservatism on matters of sexual ethics and life issues, and by their Evangelicalism in churchmanship.
The Global South encounters started in 1994. The Global South standing gained impetus concerning the controversies over the acceptance of non-celibate homosexuality, as the blessing of same-sex unions and the allowing of non-celibate homosexual clergy was being promoted by the Episcopal Church of the United States and the Anglican Church of Canada.
The Global South churches have since then vigorously opposed the legitimacy of any acceptance of same-sex relationships within the Anglican Communion.
Why is the Global South relevant to the Diocese of Singapore?
For historical and spiritually strategic reasons, the Diocese of Singapore (DOS) has contributed towards facilitating and enabling the Global South to serve its God-given purpose as a voice for orthodoxy and Biblical faithfulness.
DOS has participated in the activities of the Global South since its inception in Limuru (1994). Each successive Diocesan Bishop from Singapore had played key successive roles in the development of the Global South from Bp Moses Tay to Bp John Chew and to Bp Rennis Ponniah. Through their faithful and considerable efforts, each has contributed significantly and strategically towards vouchsafing Biblical faithfulness and orthodoxy as well as advancing Gospel mission in and through the Global South. Their contributions have resulted in what we now have as the Global South Covenantal Structure by which the GSFA will be formed and established. The GSFA aims to provide fellowship and safe haven for all faithful orthodox Anglican churches worldwide facing the onslaught of liberalism.
As part of the Global South, DOS has both a privileged and ‘kairos’ opportunity to stand together with other biblically faithful and orthodox Anglicans to give corporate expression to their unity and become a life-giving force to the Anglican Communion in deep spiritual need. There is the real danger of the global Anglican Communion to disintegrate and expire as one global family. Through GSFA, the DOS, together with other faithful Anglicans, have a pivotal contribution to make for the global Communion to remain together and flourish.
Who will take care of the global Communion? While we may have our domestic and regional needs to steward and serve, we cannot also ignore the threats and challenges facing the whole Anglican body that we are an integral part of.
May the Lord help us in our endeavour to bear faithful witness and give concrete expression to a truly one, holy, catholic and apostolic Communion. Soli Deo Gloria!
Who are the leaders of the Global South?
The Global South leadership comprise of all the Primates of the respective Provinces of the Global South. They constitute together periodically as a Primates Meeting.
In between Primates Meetings, the Global South is represented by a Steering Committee, elected by the GSFA Primates, comprising the following:
Chairman: Archbishop Dr Justin Badi (South Sudan)
Vice-Chairman: Archbishop Hector (Tito) Zavalas (Chile)
Honorary Secretary: Archbishop Samuel Sunil Mankhin (Bangladesh)
Honorary Treasurer: Archbishop Foley Beach (North America)
Honorary Adviser: Archbishop Dr Mouneer Hanna Anis (Alexandria)
Abp Stephen Than (Myanmar)
Archbishop James Wong (Indian Ocean)
Archbishop Zacharie Masimango Katanda (Congo)
How is the Diocese of Singapore specifically supporting the Global South?
What does the Global South intend to achieve?
The Objectives of the GSFA can be expressed as follows: ➢ Guard the faith.
➢ Unite in mission and ministry.
➢ Establish good governance across Provinces.
➢ Work for the well-being of the Communion.
What are the problems that the Global South is facing?
The Global South faces challenges from within as well as from without. The latter are varied and for many, common. These include wars, persecution, natural disasters and disease.
Some key challenges from within that have been prioritised for attention are reflected by the 5 Tracks identified; namely Ministry Formation, Economic Empowerment, Missions Partnerships, Discipleship and Youth Ministry.
Through these Tracks, it is hoped that some major impediments to the Global South’s vitality, growth and well-being might be addressed and surmounted.