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Shyira writes to Arkansas

The Bishop of Shyira, the Right Rev. John Rucyahana, has made public a letter that he wrote to the Bishop of Arkansas, the Right Rev. Larry E. Maze, on the topic of Rucyahana opening a parish church in Arkansas. Anglicans Online reported this event in April 1998. We reproduce the letter in its entirety, including the French-language telegraphic clutter surrounding it:

Cptes bancaires
 Diocese de SHYIRA
 B.P.26 Ruhengeri
010-0004557-79 $US
010-0004535-57 DM
 Tel: 46.602 (Bureau)
010-0004505-27 FRW 
               46.449 (Habitation)
          Fax: 46.449 (Fax)
 N/Ref: Shyira..19/6/1998
 V/Ref: No ........

 The Rt. Rev. Larry E. Maze
 The Diocese of Arkansas
 300 West 17th Street
 P. O. Box 164668
 Little Rock, Arkansas
 Fax: 501-372-2147

 Dear Bishop Maze,

 RE:    T. Johnson and St Andrew's Church.
 Thank you for your letter to me dated 27-4-98, which came to my office
 on the 10th of June 98.

 It is an opportunity to share my conviction and concern on the issue
 of the Rev T Johnson from the Diocese of South carolina.

 I will respond briefly on two issues raised in your communication:
 you said that the issue with The Rev Tom Johnson is not ideological.
 Which is so, even more deeply, it is doctrinal and fundamental faith.
 Your difference has been based on the concepts of faith on the person
 of Jesus, His purpose of incarnation, the virgin conception, the cross
 as an act of God for atomment of sins, resurrection and ascension.
 You differed on the Authority of the bible and its interpretation for
 this matter, you did not want St Andrew to exist as an Anglican
 community in your Diocese, they say, and Advised them to find an other

 My simple but clear concern and commitment is to give St Andrew's and
 Rev Johnson spiritual Asylum.  I am saddened even more that you got at
 a point where Church leaders force people into schism.  I pray that
 this congregation remains Anglican up to a time you resolve your
 differences.  Give it a flying bishop, who will nurture their faith
 from your province.  We have had flying bishops in the history of the
 Anglican communion on light differences, than such issues of faith
 between you and St Andrews.  I am very flexible, as I said my role
 was to provide refuge for my fellow Anglicans, so, It will be my joy
 if you resolve this issue as Anglicans other them having St Andrew's
 to find an other home.

 As for the mentioned 72 resolutions of 1998 Lambeth Conference.  The
 Unity of the Church is centered only in Jesus Christ our Lord and
 Saviour, who did for our sins, rose from the dead and lives (as we
 have it in the Christian creeds).  So the issue of boundaries and
 collegeality can not hold when the central Unity in Jesus is damaged.
 We have to revisit some issues.  Faith is our priority and the rest
 are supportive measures.

 The Rev T. Johnson and St Andrew's community do not want to go into a
 schism.  They want to remain Anglican.  They were being pushed to the
 edge and applied for a refuge, they have it.  I hope that you and your
 province will find a solution to this problem.

 With a copy of this letter am requesting The Rev T. Johnson and Judge
 Young to write in detail the cause and history of your differences.
 They also need to explain why did they appeal for assistance from
 Africa leaving the Bishops of your province and give copies to all the
 people I am giving copies of my response t your letter.

 Sincerely Yours,

 The Rt Rev John Rucyahana

 cc: - The Archbishop of Canterbury
  - The Archbishop of PEER
  - The Presiding Bishop EE.USA
  - All Primates
  - All Bishops
  - The Rev T. Johnson


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