Bishop of Singapore slams other provinces for ‘departing from the faith’

Published October 1, 1999

The Anglican bishop of Singapore, Moses Tay, announced that he was boycotting the September meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Scotland, calling it “one of the most heretical provinces.”

Archbishop Tay wrote a letter to Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey saying he is protesting the “increasing number of bishops and primates who are deliberately going against the Lambeth resolutions on biblical authority and morality.”

Archbishop Tay, who besides being bishop of Singapore is also archbishop of southeast Asia, said his House of Bishops concluded that those who have gone against the Lambeth position on biblical authority and morality are deemed to have departed from the faith.

“The whole purpose of an ACC meeting is to have at hand, at great effort and expense, people from the whole Communion to share in the process of deliberation and decision making,” Canon John Peterson, the secretary general of ACC, said in a statement. “The primates who attend have no vote but their voice in hearings and debates has always been welcome. This particular meeting is significant as it addresses items from the Lambeth Conference 1998?”

The Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, Archbishop Richard Holloway, said in a statement he was saddened by Archbishop Tay’s decision.

“We are a warm and affectionate church and we contain among ourselves the complete range of views that characterize the Anglican family,” he said. “Inclusivity and the ability, not only to tolerate, but to celebrate difference and disagreement, are important values for us. We regret the fact that Archbishop Tay will not be with us to make his distinctive contribution to our deliberations, and we hope that he will reconsider his position.”

“We need to face up to the deep divisions within our Communion because of the continuing deviation from the ‘faith once delivered to the saints,'” Archbishop Tay wrote in his letter. “We cannot value unity above truth, which is intolerant of error. Any facade of unity is no more than the proverbial invisible clothes worn by the King.”

The archbishop also complains that patronizing and racist statements have been made against African and Asian bishops.

“And now ACC can organize primates and ACC meetings in one of the most heretical provinces!” he wrote.

Archbishop Tay said he hoped other provinces would also protest and “de-recognize the dioceses and provinces that have departed from the faith.”


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