TEAM: Official Episcopal Church delegation issues letter to the Church

March 13, 2007

The official Episcopal Church Delegation to the March 7-14 Towards Effective Anglican Mission (TEAM) conference issued a letter to the Episcopal Church on March 14.

Greetings to The Episcopal Church from the church's official delegation to the TEAM conference in Boksburg, South Africa.

There will be a formal consent document issued by the TEAM conference in a few weeks. In the meantime, we hope to briefly describe some important conference aspects from our perspective.

Thirty of the thirty-eight provinces in the Anglican Communion were officially represented. Other provinces were also in attendance as well as extra-provincial locations. For many participants, including almost the entire Episcopal Church delegation, this gathering was the first experience we had of the diversity and breadth of the Anglican Communion. An important part of the conference was the renewed and deepened relationships with our sisters and brothers across the world.

The Rev. Diana Miremba Nkessga, from Uganda, Chaplain to the conference, brought us a sense of understanding regarding women and children in sub-Saharan Africa and the necessity for urgent and immediate response. Others in the conference shared information regarding the areas in which they work and live that truly touched our hearts.

There is no doubt in our minds that The Episcopal Church is called by God to mission in the world. The provinces in the Anglican Communion are our mission partners in faith and commitment to the work of Jesus Christ in the world.

At our 75th General Convention, The Episcopal Church embraced the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Many of our congregations, dioceses and provinces have moved forward, working on the MDGs with commitment and creativity. For that we give thanks.

As The Episcopal Church moves forward, more and more challenges for mission will come before us. As a Church, we are truly blessed to be able to respond to God's mission challenge in the form of the MDGs. But we are a people of faith, and it is our faith in the risen Christ that roots our ministry in God's mission to meet the MDGs and to go beyond.
As we have heard and seen many times this week, in an atmosphere of joy and music, dancing, worship and prayer, the Anglican Communion is alive and well. Together, we are well in the "bonds of mission" as well as in the "bonds of affection."

We have many resources, stories and photos to bring home. We have been deeply touched by those we have met here. The Episcopal Church in its entirety has been present with us in our hearts and in our prayers. Together, let us embrace the African term ubuntu, which means "compassion and understanding of the other; one is diminished without the other."

The Episcopal Church Delegates to the TEAM Conference
Boksburg, South Africa; March 7-14, 2007

The Rt. Rev. Frank T. Griswold, 25th Presiding Bishop
Bonnie Anderson, President of the House of Deputies
Laura Amendola, youth delegate, St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Duluth, Minnesota;
The Rev. Canon Eugene Sutton, canon pastor, Washington National Cathedral
The Very Rev. Pascual Torres, chancellor of the Diocese of Honduras.