Central African NGOs unite across faiths
IN THE Central African Republic, an Interfaith Partnership for the Consolidation of Peace has been created to support the economic, social, and educational development of the country’s poorest and most vulnerable people caught up in civil conflict, and to advocate peace between religious communities. The group is to combine the work of the National Interfaith Peace Platform, the United States Agency for International Development, the Aegis Trust, the Catholic Relief Services, Islamic Relief Worldwide, World Vision, and other humanitarian organisations.
Bishop speaks out on political violence in Zambia
THE Bishop of Eastern Zambia, the Rt Revd William Mchombo, has expressed “great concern” regarding the rise of political violence in Zambia, as the country prepares for its tripartite general election on 11 August. The UK Government is advising tourists to avoid areas where political violence and hooliganism have occurred in recent months, despite agreements and assurances about curbing the outbreaks made by the Zambian President, Edgar Lungu. The Bishop said this week that political “speeches should be devoid of provocative and malicious language”, and urged party leaders to “condemn any acts of violence and unpalatable language”. The Archbishop of Canterbury discussed the rise in political tensions with President Lungu in Lusaka last month (News, 8 April).
Archbishop Tutu’s daughter resigns licence
THE daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Revd Mpho Tutu-Van Furth, has confirmed that she has handed back her licence in the diocese of Cape Town after being warned that it would be revoked after she married a woman. She said this week that she wanted to act in a “dignified” manner, before it was taken away “because the South African Anglican Church does not recognise same-sex marriages”. She married Marceline van Furth, a paediatrician, in the Netherlands in December. The Revd Charlotte Bannister-Parker, an associate priest at St Michael’s, Summertown, in Oxford, led a celebration, described by a spokeswoman for the diocese of Oxford as neither a wedding nor a blessing, and having episcopal permission, for the couple in the Boland, Cape Town, this month.