[ACNS, by Gavin Drake] Members of the Anglican Consultative Council, meeting in Lusaka, Zambia, will elect a new chair tomorrow and will have the choice of two candidates with significant knowledge of global Anglicanism: Professor Joanildo Burity from Brazil and Archbishop Paul Kwong from Hong Kong.
Professor Burity is the lead researcher and director of the School of Postgraduate Studies and Professional Development at Fundação Joaquim Nabuco. He was elected to the ACC Standing Committee at ACC-15 in New Zealand in 2012.
“I believe that the Anglican Consultative Council provides us a way to express the ministry of all believers and especially the power of lay and clergy ministry to bring contributions to the church and the world,” he said. “The ACC is also a place where bishops, clergy and lay people can relate to one another in an equal and collegial forum. The ACC should remain a place where honest conversation about our differences can happen in an atmosphere of charity and mutual affirmation.”
The Most Revd Dr Paul Kwong is Archbishop of Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui (the Anglican Church in Hong Kong) and Bishop of Hong Kong Island. He was a Primate member of the Standing Committee between 2011 and 2015 and a member of the ACC since ACC-15 in New Zealand in 2012.
“As a Hong Konger I know the value of being a bridge between worlds,” he said. “I know what it takes to hold open that space for as long as it takes to find unity and harmony. As an Anglican, I know that building such bridges and walking upon them, is what gives us hope of staying together: as long as it takes. As ACC chair, I would give you this pledge: we will always work for dialogue and engagement. We will never work for exclusion and expulsion. We will hold open the space for us to find each other again: as long as it takes.”
Voting for the position of the chair of the Anglican Communion’s Standing Committee will take place on Friday.