New Primate Elected for Tanzania

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The Rt. Rev. Valentino L. Mokiwa, Bishop of Dar es Salaam in the Anglican Church of Tanzania, was elected archbishop of the province Feb. 28 during a special session of the General Synod in Dodoma.

Bishop Mokiwa will be installed in Dodoma on May 25. He succeeds the Most Rev. Donald L. Mtetemela, whose second five-year term concludes in May. Primates in Tanzania are limited to a maximum of two five-year terms under that province’s constitution. Archbishop Mtetemela will continue as Bishop of the Diocese of Ruaha for the next five years, while also serving as chancellor of St. John’s University in Dodoma.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: Latest News* International News & CommentaryAfrica

25 Comments
Posted February 28, 2008 at 5:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. robroy wrote:

I hope that the new primate will reject participation in Bp Howe’s plan to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop.”

February 28, 7:02 pm | [comment link]
2. seitz wrote:

Silly comment. +Mtetemela and his successor will be seamless. The Partners Plan always had this development firmly in view. +Donald is a senior and much admired Primate, with total trust from +RDW.

February 28, 7:53 pm | [comment link]
3. Sarah1 wrote:

robroy, it appears that you are incorrect.  Archbishop Mokiwa will be participating in the plan to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop.”

February 28, 8:06 pm | [comment link]
4. robroy wrote:

Well, Sarah, I did say that I hoped for the new Archbishop to see the Communion Partners Scheme for what it is, and hope is a virtue. And no, hope is not “silly.”

But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

February 28, 8:41 pm | [comment link]
5. seitz wrote:

Thanks for clarifying, over the ironic complementary note of Sarah, that the hope was for the new +Tanzania AB to be at odds with a godly Archbishop +Mtetemela. How strange to hear that the real enthusiasm is for finding traction—it is actually not clear for what?—in hoping that +Mtetemela and +Mokiwa are divided. The provincial secretary of Tanzania was a guest of Wycliffe College last term, and +Mtetemela is an old friend of our Principle (who was an instrumental figure in his province) and ACI and CA bishops. But quoting Paul in the name of a hope that…that does what? Hopes that Tanzania is divided so as to help…who? Robroy?

Sarah of course was rising to your aid, by suggesting that your logic was sound and that this would mean that +Mokiwa would ‘strengthen the hand of the PB.’ That is how convoluted, arch, and blog-inverted this entire idea is.

February 28, 8:57 pm | [comment link]
6. Br_er Rabbit wrote:

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe.
The Rabbit.

February 28, 9:24 pm | [comment link]
7. jamesw wrote:

While I don’t hold out any hope for it, I am willing to give Seitz, Radner et.al. the benefit of the doubt with their various plans for another few months.  I don’t really see any purpose or justification for the intense anger displayed against them at this point.  I mean, let’s say Seitz, Radner et.al. are shown by history to be naive and that the ACI strategy is shown to have borne no fruit - well, I can assure everyone that it wouldn’t have mattered if they had joined the GAFCON crowd (does anyone really think that RW would have changed tactics just becasue Seitz, Radner, a handful of TEC bishops and some primates, who the GAFCON regard as weak-willed anyway, were to have switched sides?!??).  Why the intense anger over what is, at worst, good-intentioned naivete?

So, while I do suspect that the Communion Partners plan and its obviously related and connected Communion discipline plan will be shown to be hopelessly naive and a flash in the pan, I respect Seitz, Radner, the primates and TEC bishops for trying to work out a reasonable solution.

I am thankful that the incoming Tanzanian primate is orthodox.  Seitz, any word on whether he will be at GAFCON like his predecessor?

February 28, 9:33 pm | [comment link]
8. seitz wrote:

I do not know who you, jamesw are, but, thanks—for very little. If you think ACI is naive, you are naive.
As for Gafcon—the idea that +Mtetemela was going to Gafcon and not to Lambeth is part and parcel of blog tohowovohu.
Let’s try to keep things in the land of the real. +Mtetemela is a close colleague and friend, as are many of his clergy, with Wycliffe’s Principal, ACI and CA bishops.
Will the successor be going to Gafcon? I have no idea. I have only heard that—of the very large number of GS primates—only Rwanda, Uganda, and Nigeria are planning to go.  Maybe new attendees will be forthcoming. Will they go to Gafcon (now in Amman? and Jerusalem?) and not go to Lambeth (for that is what the question appears to be concerned with)—I have no idea. But I doubt it.

February 28, 9:52 pm | [comment link]
9. wildfire wrote:

1. Dr. Seitz, Abp. Mtetemela is listed as part of the GAFCON Leadership Team.  Are you saying he isn’t going?

2. The story about Bp. Mokiwa’s election has been up most of the day on ENS with Matthew Davies’ byline.  It is not on ACNS or on the Anglican Church of Tanzania website.  Why is ENS scooping the world?  That’s scary.

3. There are broad hints that big news is coming soon out of SE Asia.  Are they going to GAFCON?

February 28, 10:12 pm | [comment link]
10. seitz wrote:

Mark McCall—I am not saying that Tanzania might go or not go to Gafcon (see my remarks). I am saying that for them, and perhaps for others, this is in NO way an indication that Lambeth is a choice vis-a-vis Amman/Jerusalem, and that they will not be attending Lambeth.
+Donald Mtetemela’s stepping down has been known—inside of Tanzania and for those who care to know independently of TEC politics—for many moons. If this is a scoop, it could only be because some think so, or because ENS wants to see some kind of significance where there is none—not least for the Communion Partners Plan. We have known that +Mtetemela would be stepping down and viewed that as in no way a diminishment of his good role in a possible Partners Plan—in spite of disparagement on the ENS side (if so it is) as well as from people like Robroy. +Mtetemela is highly respected and will no cease being so because a new Primate is in place—could even mean more support for the Partners. Grace and peace.

February 28, 10:34 pm | [comment link]
11. wildfire wrote:

I am aware that it was widely known that Abp. Mtetemela was retiring as Primate.  Even I knew it and I’m about as out of the loop as it is possible to be.  If I recall correctly, the GS primates noted this during their China trip last fall.  But the election of his successor was held today.  The scoop is who the new primate is.

February 28, 10:42 pm | [comment link]
12. seitz wrote:

I was unaware, Mark, that this choice was a surprise to anyone. That is, it portends no change in direction. I am not intimating you thought that. God bless.

February 28, 10:50 pm | [comment link]
13. wildfire wrote:

That is, it portends no change in direction. I am not intimating you thought that.

In fact, Dr. Seitz, that is precisely what I feared.  I am greatly relieved by your comment.

February 28, 10:56 pm | [comment link]
14. robroy wrote:

“Strengthening the hand of the presiding bishop” were not my words. They were Bishop Howe’s describing the Communion Partners Scheme. I truly cannot fathom why Bp Howe or Chris Seitz would want to strengthen the hand of the one who is bringing incalculable shame to the bride of Christ. But it is certainly reasonable to hope that all faithful Christians including the new Archbishop of Tanzania will reject this. Is this that complicated?

February 28, 11:26 pm | [comment link]
15. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “Sarah of course was rising to your aid, by suggesting that your logic was sound and that this would mean that +Mokiwa would ‘strengthen the hand of the PB.’”

Not at all.  I was merely quoting the original idea and hope of Bishop Howe; I have no reason to suppose that RobRoy would wish to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop”—that is Bishop Howe’s hope.

RE: “That is how convoluted, arch, and blog-inverted this entire idea is.”

Blogs certainly are irritating . . . . for some.  For instance, they allow people to read the words and hopes of Bishop Howe, who wishes to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop” and they allow peons like RobRoy to express the hope that the new Primate of Tanzania will not wish to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop” and they allow people from the ACI to then announce that, yes, the new Primate of Tanzania does indeed wish to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop” and then they allow other peons like me to note to Rob that his hopes are dashed—indeed, the new Primate of Tanzania does indeed wish to “strengthen the hand of the Presiding Bishop.”

Bad Blogs!

Bad, bad, bad blogs!  Oh that there were no blogs, so that RobRoy and Sarah might not have such new insights into the hopes and dreams of both Bihsop Howe and the new Primate of Tanzania.

February 28, 11:44 pm | [comment link]
16. Chris Hathaway wrote:

Careful Sarah. Heaven forfend that you might offend our thin-skinned brethren who know better than we.

February 28, 11:51 pm | [comment link]
17. jamesw wrote:

Dr. Seitz - no need to be quite so touchy.  I realize that you have been beaten up a lot lately, but while I don’t always agree with you, I do have an enormous amount of respect for you.

I was not in any way suggesting that the new primate of Tanzania would boycott Lambeth while choosing to attend GAFCON.  I know that the current primate has announced he is going to both.  And if I am right, I think he is currently the only primate so positioned.  I personally think that the combination is very very important as he can be a bridge between the GAFCON folks and the CommCon folks.  I would be very relieved if the new primate of Tanzania continues in this bridge-building capacity.  No need to take offence with this question.

Yes, Dr. Seitz, I sometimes get the idea from the ACI of having on rose-colored glasses, or having a certain amount of good-intentioned naivete.  I base that on past statements from ACI types, past responses to those statements by both the TEC leadership and Rowan Williams, and the ACI’s expressed confidence in Williams’ and TEC’s support of their future plans.  The most recent incident being the largely ACI-inspired Pastoral Plan at Dar Es Salaam.  It was a good and reasonable plan, supposedly agreed to and supported by Rowan Williams.  It was adopted and again supposedly agreed to by KJS.  And then KJS disclaimed her support and Rowan Williams sabatoged it.

Again, the Communion Partners plan may be good and reasonable (even if we don’t know the full details).  Rowan Williams and KJS have indicated that they at least don’t object to it…..but we know how valuable their endorsements are.

Now, Dr. Seitz, you are undoubtedly more “in the loop” then I am.  Perhaps this time, you have a plan that will actually work.  Your last plan didn’t because it was sabatoged by the very parties you now trumpet as supporting your new plan.  I hope the new one will work.  But pardon me for taking a “I’ll believe it when I see it” approach this time around.  If the new plan works, I’ll be amongst the first to join the cheerleading squad for the ACI.

My point above was that even if this new plan meets the same fate as the last, folks on the blogs should not be attacking you because at least you are trying to do something positive and constructive.  There seems to be a lot of people accusing you and the ACI of being colloborationists and the like.  My point is that at WORST you can be accused of being good-intentioned but naive.  What we all hope (at least I do) is that you will be revealed to be geniuses with a penchant for secrecy and perseverence when everyone else has given up hope.

February 29, 1:14 am | [comment link]
18. seitz wrote:

#15—thanks for illustrating the issue so well.

It is not entirely clear to me what the context of Bishop Howe’s remarks was. He was referring to a plan that did not work, and one that he believed would work – now that Primates and the Archbishop of Canterbury are in some way related to it (the details of that not in the public domain). Of course if for anything to be palatable or workable it must delete the PB, then the remarks of Howe will serve to light a fuse. At issue for some of us is not raising the power of the PB above what it properly is in this matter, and moving forward with fullest Communion presence and attachment.

But of course this thread was not about a Howe but about a new Tanzanian Archbishop. Given that the term of service in Tanzania is stipulated, this change was never out of view.

February 29, 9:53 am | [comment link]
19. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “#15—thanks for illustrating the issue so well.”

You are so welcome.  Happy to oblige with illustrating certain people’s issues with blogs.

February 29, 10:19 am | [comment link]
20. The_Elves wrote:

This thread needs to return to the topic posted.

-Elf Lady

February 29, 10:21 am | [comment link]
21. seitz wrote:

Yes, it did seem like a remark internal to blogging and not to do with the topic. Let’s see if next time there is a way to bring +Howe in, too!

February 29, 10:22 am | [comment link]
22. seitz wrote:

I apologise as this is off topic, but James seems to have asked a sincere question. (And btw, to say you are naive does not make me touchy. It is to state a fact.)
Watching things deteriorate on a thread about JI Packer has raised questions for me about this entire business in our present season. I thing the reality on the blogs is something like this. 1. People who want to realign are unclear how well that is going; whether the cost is to be borne; whether it will be something with wider and long term support in places like the Global South, instead of what it is at present; and of course many are already in this slip stream full stop. As ACI is not engaged in these options, and is pursuing something else, mindful that the choices to go in this direction must be made by those who entertain this realignment path as a way forward. In the face of this, the Communion Plan is tailor made for attacking. The public details are unclear (all to the good for speculation-condemnation). It shifts attention from the difficulties of the realigning instinct. One might, e.g., have concluded, why should anyone who wants the realignment option have any opinion at all about Howe or Canterbury or whatever…aren’t they just the path not chosen? It’s a little like Kimel becoming a RC and then persisting in spending a lot of time criticising anglicanism (something, mercifully, he seems to have stopped). No one trusted Howe or Canterbury, e.g., before, so why should they trust them now? People found ACI loathsome or benighted (naive) and wrong before, so why might anything it does to provide an option they are not interested in really matter? One could conclude that this is all just a highly personalised gravity field—it is just darn good fun to take a whack at +RDW, ACI, +Howe, etc. from the Parlour of one’s Ire. But does this really amount to a way forward? No, it is just about showing that one was always right, from the privacy of one’s own keyboard, and that any tertium quid distracts from that conviction and that blog frisson. But then, maybe that is what a blog irreduceably is. I say that as a neutral thing. It does mean that actual construction of a way forward (or a way backward as some see it!) is different in kind. No wonder many wise principals in these matters stay away entirely.

February 29, 12:25 pm | [comment link]
23. jamesw wrote:

Dr. Seitz:  Permit me to respond to part of your post #22.  I think that you assume that everyone currently in the FedCon/GAFCON camp is there willingly and enthusiastically (as for me, I remain in TEC in a hostile diocese carrying on the fight under the diocesan radar but in the innocent way of educating).  That is, Dr. Seitz, where you are quite wrong (so far as I can make out).  My impression from both real life and the blog interactions is that while the top GAFCON/FedCon leadership is very committed to pursuing the path which you characterize as the GAFCON path (i.e. away from Canterbury, etc.), the majority of parishes, laity, clergy in the FedCon (i.e. who see realignment as a very unfortunate necessity) would much rather be in the CommCon camp.  These people look to you, the ACI, the CA bishops FIRST for hope, and only to the GAFCON leadership SECOND in FRUSTRATION.

Dr. Seitz, I believe very much that the anger you hear in the blogs against Howe and the ACI is not people enjoying personal attacks for the sake of personal attacks, but rather people lashing out as a result of unmet expectations.  It is anger from hope (thought to be) dashed.  At least that is what I think it is.  Y’all are looked to more for leadership then you might think, Dr. Seitz.

February 29, 12:56 pm | [comment link]
24. seitz wrote:

Thank you for your views, James. I am signing off for work I must do. God bless.

February 29, 1:04 pm | [comment link]
25. Branford wrote:

#23 - jamesw - you are so right

February 29, 6:11 pm | [comment link]
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