(Living Church) Brazil’s Anglicans Face a Challenging Future

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Archbishop Maurico José Araújo de Andrade is a genial huggy-bear of a man who has been called to the helm of the Episcopal Church of Brazil in uncertain times.

Brazil is the world’s fifth-largest country, both by mass (8.5 million square miles) and population (more than 200 million people). Most Brazilians call themselves Roman Catholic, but these days Pentecostals worship in about equal numbers. The presence of high-profile Pentecostals on the national football team is just one sign that the star of Pentecostalism continues to rise.

Roman Catholic parishes in Brazil are large, plentiful and highly visible. Most stay open all the time. Dotted all over cities and towns are tiny chapels of various Pentecostal affiliations. In the daytime they tend to be shuttered, but they come alive at night as people punctuate boisterous sermons with amens and pray fervently for promised material blessings.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: Latest News* International News & CommentarySouth AmericaBrazil

Posted April 26, 2011 at 4:54 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. MichaelA wrote:

It is a shame that the author John Martin entirely failed to mention the strongly liberal bent of this Province - that is the reason they are failing.

A large proportion of their funding comes directly from TEC and ACiC, i.e. the Province has to be propped up by liberal western churches who need it to push their illusory “global” credentials.

The article also failed to mention the Diocese of Recife which is strongly orthodox in belief. A few years ago it disaffiliated from the Episcopal Province and now takes alternative oversight from the Primate of the Southern Cone (an orthodox Anglican bishop).

Since leaving the Episcopal Province, the Diocese of Recife has more than doubled in size, a significant contrast to the slow withering of its former parent.

April 26, 8:51 pm | [comment link]
2. robroy wrote:

Anglicanism obviously can thrive in the Global South. The Brazilians could not be more foolish, mooring themselves to the sinking TEclub. You just want to ask, “Você é tão estúpido?”

In contrast…

However, the breakaway Diocese of Recife reports strong growth in line with that witnessed by other conservative Protestant denominations. In January Bishop Robinson Cavalcanti of Recife reported his Diocese had more than doubled in size since it withdrew from the IEAB.

Bishop Cavalcanti stated that as of year’s end, the “Diocese has a membership of 5,102 in 47 congregations – Parishes, Mission Plants and Points – and has a presence in nine Brazilian states, with 61 clergy and an ample network of social outreach ministries.”

He noted that “since its expulsion” from the IEAB five years ago, the “Diocese of Recife has more than doubled its number of congregations, clergy and members.”

April 26, 9:01 pm | [comment link]
3. robroy wrote:

Hit submit and see MichaelA beat me to it.

April 26, 9:02 pm | [comment link]
4. MichaelA wrote:

Soz Robroy, but both our points were well made so no harm done!

April 26, 9:26 pm | [comment link]
5. Ralinda wrote:

“We are not called to be Catholics, or Pentecostals, evangelical or confessional.”
Sounds like he’s channeling Donna Bott.
“We take no position on Scripture or theology or morals,” said Donna Bott, a leader of a group called Episcopal Voices of Central Florida, which sponsored the meeting. “We are just Episcopalians.”

April 26, 11:28 pm | [comment link]
6. kmh1 wrote:

#1; you’re right - a strangely myopic article. Is this John Martin the former editor of the Church of England Newspaper?

April 27, 3:19 am | [comment link]
7. MichaelA wrote:

kmh1, I assume it is the John that I was briefly at Law School with in Sydney before he went to England, and I have been impressed with a lot of the material he has written. His grasp of early church history in England in particular has been very refreshing.

But I just wish that in an article about the problems of the episcopal province of Brazil, that he could have mentioned the Diocese of Recife issue (including the contrast between the success of the dioceses and the decline of the province) for completeness.

April 27, 8:07 pm | [comment link]
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