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Love knows no boundaries, Bishop Poggo tells Synod congregation

10 July 2022

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MEMBERS of the General Synod joined a sung eucharist at York Minster for the first time in three years on Sunday morning.

After the traditional service was cancelled along when the Synod was delayed or moved online in 2020 and 2021, due to the pandemic, members were welcomed warmly back to the cathedral by the Archbishop of York.

The Rt Revd Anthony Poggo, the newly appointed secretary-general of the Anglican Communion (News, 14 June), preached from the parable of the Good Samaritan, noting how Jesus did not praise either the priest or the Levite in the story, but the foreign outsider.

“Love knows no cultural, religious, tribal or national boundary,” Bishop Poggo said, urging those listening to remember the suffering of those in Ukraine, the Congo, and elsewhere. His homeland of South Sudan had seen three rounds of displacement thanks to conflict, he said — he and his family had been among the millions who sought refuge in neighbouring Uganda, their own good Samaritan.

Another sign of good neighbourliness, he said, was how Anglican dioceses support each other, including financially, around the world. He urged bishops attending the Lambeth Conference in a few weeks’ time to prayerfully consider which dioceses they could partner with.

“This morning we should go and be good neighbours to all human beings and help those in need, regardless of creed, colour, tribe, nation, or any other differences. We are all children of God.” Jesus himself was the ultimate good neighbour, Bishop Poggo concluded, by giving his life for us.

At the end of the service, Archbishop Cottrell urged those in the Minster to visit the “Faith and Fracture” glass sculpture currently on show. Likening the artwork to a deconstructed stained-glass window, Archbishop Cottrell said that, when viewing it, he had reflected on whether the glass was coming apart or coming back together.

“Oh, I pray God it’s coming together,” he said, “as we go from here, many of us back to the business of Synod, but all of us back to the business of living and sharing the gospel in the world. And, oh, how our world needs the unity and the peace that we have shared around this table.”

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