“You are not alone,” says Bishop Zavala, speaking for primates of the Global South, which represents two-thirds of the world’s Anglicans
CHARLESTON, SC, May 21, 2015 – Repeating the reassurances spoken by a stream of visiting Anglican bishops during the past three years, the Presiding Bishop of the Anglican Province of South America told Bishop Mark Lawrence and others from the Diocese of South Carolina, “My brothers and sisters, you are not alone. You continue being part of the Anglican Communion.”
The Most Rev. Hector “Tito” Zavala, Bishop of Chile and Presiding Bishop of the Anglican Province of South America, made his comments in clear English during a meeting at the Cathedral Church of St. Luke and St. Paul, Charleston, May 20. He said that, despite the Diocese’s separation from the Episcopal Church in 2012, the Diocese continues to be recognized as Anglicans by the majority of the worldwide Anglican Communion.
“I'm here with you with the consent of the Archbishop of Canterbury," said Bishop Zavala. He told those gathered that Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, was with the Global South Primates "Steering Committee" in a meeting in Cairo, Egypt in 2014 when "we decided to establish a Primatial Oversight Council to provide pastoral and primatial oversight to some dioceses in order to keep them within the Communion" said Bishop Zavala.
Bishop Zavala is one of 40 primates of the 80 million member worldwide Anglican Communion. His province is made up of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay.
The Global South, which makes up 75 percent of the Anglican Communion, emerged as a way for bishops and primates of the Southern Hemisphere to encourage one another for mission. Though it is recognized by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, it is not an official structure of the Anglican Communion.
During his first South Carolina visit, Bishop Zavala met with the Diocesan Council and the Anglican Communion Development Committee. He also participated in meetings that were open to the public at St. Matthias, Summerton and the Cathedral, Charleston.
Bishop Zavala came to the United States to receive a Doctorate of Ministry from Trinity Seminary in Ambridge, PA.
During his comments, he repeatedly reassured the Diocese that it has the support of Anglican leaders from around the world.
“Behind me is the Primate of Egypt and the Middle East, the Primate of the Indian Ocean, the Primate of Myanmar, the Primate of Southeast Asia, the Primate of Nigeria, the Primate of Burundi and others. We are supporting you,” he said. “In the Global South we do not want to interfere with any dioceses … (But) If a diocese has a problem with the Primate or House of Bishops who do not respect Lambeth resolutions we are ready and willing to support them, realizing it’s a temporary not permanent oversight.”
Bishop Zavala also shared at length the remarkable growth and missionary spirit of his home Diocese of Chile. As both the first native-born diocesan bishop of Chile and Primate of South America he continues to be an inspiring pioneer for Anglicanism.
“We’re grateful for the strong support we’ve received from Anglicans around the world and are especially thankful for this time we’ve had with Bishop Zavala,” said Bishop Lawrence.
Bishop Zavala will continue as a guest of the Diocese through the end of the week.
Photo: (from left) Bishop Mark Lawrence, XIV Bishop of South Carolina with Bishop Tito Zavala, Bishop of Chile and the Presiding Bishop of the Anglican Province of South America. Photo Credit: Joy Hunter
View a photo album from Bishop Zavala's visit.