GAFCON Australasia plans a youth-focussed conference

“GAFCON Australasia’s second conference has set its sights firmly on the future of the church in Australia, for the first time welcoming youth to be fully involved in the movement.

GAFCON, the Global Anglican Future Conference, began as a meeting in Jerusalem in 2008 and grew into a movement for reform and renewal in the Anglican Church across the world. The Australasian branch held its first conference in Canberra in 2022, where it announced the formation of the Diocese of the Southern Cross to cover congregations that had to withdraw from the Anglican Church in various parts of Australia because of teaching that went against the Bible.  …”

– Russell Powell reports at

Photo: GAFCON Aust 2022 conference in Canberra.

Gafcon Australasia Conference 2024

The Gafcon Australasia Conference is coming up in Brisbane at the start of July.

Details here.

GAFCON Australasia Conference 2024

The GAFCON Australasia Conference is coming up 1-4 July 2024 in Brisbane.

Details and booking here.

GAFCON Australia prayer request

“From GAFCON Australia: Eugenie Harris is one of a number of Gafcon supporters who are part of an Israel study tour. From the relative safety of Jerusalem, she has asked that we join in prayer …”

– Read it at

Photo: Jerusalem, GAFCON 2008.

New Beginnings Church, Lakelands — latest to join Diocese of the Southern Cross

Today’s prayer request from GAFCON:

“The Diocese of the Southern Cross (Australia) welcomed another new church recently: New Beginnings Church, Lakelands, Western Australia.

Thank God for the courage and conviction of the congregation. Their rented building is already too small: please pray for a suitable space that will enable growth and service in the community.”

Sydney diocese declares ‘breach of fellowship’ with Australian Church

“The synod of the diocese of Sydney has carried several motions urging changes to the way in which the diocese interacts with the Anglican Church of Australia. …

One motion carried at the Sydney diocesan synod noted ‘with godly grief the deep breach of fellowship in the Anglican Church of Australia exposed at the eighteenth session of General Synod on matters of doctrine and human sexuality’. It requested the synod’s Standing Committee ‘to consider our future approach as a Diocese to meetings of the General Synod’…

Speaking at a pre-synod dinner, Dr Davies, who is the first bishop of the diocese of the Southern Cross, said that, if Sydney diocese really cared for Australia, the ‘best clergy’ and lay people should be sent to dioceses where there were ‘welcoming bishops’. It also needed to support, through the Gafcon diocese, ‘hurting Anglicans’ in dioceses led by ‘revisionist bishops’.”

– Muriel Porter writes in The Church Times – also at Virtueonline.
Photo: Sydney Synod 2022.


Bishop Glenn Davies’ ACL Synod Dinner address, 2022.

Diocese of the Southern Cross.

Bishop Glenn Davies’ Address at the ACL Synod Dinner 2022

The Rt Rev Dr Glenn Davies spoke tonight, 12 September 2022, at a packed ACL Synod Dinner.

His topic?  “Where to from now? The place of Sydney Anglicans in Australia”.

Dr Davies, former Archbishop of Sydney, is Deputy Chair of Gafcon Australia and also Bishop of the newly formed Diocese of the Southern Cross.

Speaking of the Anglican Church of Australia, he said there is a fracture in unity, holiness, catholicity and apostolicity – a tear in the fabric.

Take the time to hear his very informative address:


or download the 11.5MB / 23 minute mp3 file. (right click on the link to Save As.)

An Anglican “lifeboat” for Australia

“We have recently seen the announcement of the activation of a new ‘extra-provincial’ Anglican diocese in Australia.

The ‘Diocese of the Southern Cross’ (‘DSC’) is not a part of the official ‘Anglican Church of Australia’ (‘ACA’). It has been set up to provide an ecclesiastical home for congregations who are Anglican by theology and conviction but find themselves unable to accept the authority of bishops of the ACA who do not accept the teachings of the Bible, especially on the subject of the Biblical views of marriage. …”

– At Law and Religion Australia, Neil Foster gives some legal background to the new Diocese of the Southern Cross.

GAFCON Chairman reminds Justin Welby why the Diocese of the Southern Cross is needed

After the creation of the Diocese of the Southern Cross last month, Archbishop Foley Beach wrote to Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby to clarify what was happening.

His letter has now been published by the Anglican Church in North America (PDF file):

“Your Grace,

Greetings in the Name of Christ Jesus our Lord!

I assume that you have heard by now of the creation of the Gafcon extra-provincial diocese in Australia called the Diocese of the Southern Cross, and Archbishop Glenn Davies’ appointment as the bishop. I am writing to remind you that this action is not done because of rebellion or defiance, but out of a genuine pastoral concern and care for the clergy and congregations whose consciences will not allow them to go along with the unbiblical and immoral practices allowed and encouraged by bishops of the Anglican Church of Australia. As Archbishop Rowan Williams encouraged a structure in North America so “we can keep these fellow Anglicans in the fold,” we will continue to offer safe harbor for those in Provinces whose leaders walk away from the moral teaching of the New Testament, the Church Fathers, and our Anglican heritage.

Some may unfairly slander us as schismatics, but you know that in reality it is those who depart from the established teaching of the Church who are causing the division (Epistle of Jude 18, 19). I implore you to call us all to repentance and to return to the Apostles’ Teaching of the Bible.

In Christ Jesus,

The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach
Chair, Gafcon Primates Council.”

Traditional Anglicans are Going by The Book

“A group of clergymen has broken away from the established Anglican church in Australia to form the ‘Diocese of the Southern Cross.’ Former Sydney Archbishop Glenn Davies is its first Bishop. The announcement was made at the recent Gafcon Australasia Conference held in Canberra.

What’s it all about? Well, to be clear, I’m not an authority on doings within the Anglican church. I’m just a parishioner. But I have enough understanding to have a view on the issue at stake. …”

– Writing in Quadrant, Peter Smith looks at the reasons for the formation of the Diocese of the Southern Cross.

Presbyterians extend hand of fellowship to Bishop of the Diocese of the Southern Cross

Dr Peter Barnes, Moderator-General of the Presbyterian Church of Australia, has written a letter to Dr Glenn Davies, Bishop of the Diocese of the Southern Cross.

The Clerk of the General Assembly of Australia has sent a copy to all Ministers and Session Clerks, adding,

“The Moderator-General has requested that this letter be forwarded to you with the request that it be circulated amongst the members of your congregation.”

Here’s the letter:

22 August 2022

Dear Glenn,

Your many Presbyterian friends have watched recent developments in the Anglican Church in Australia and are delighted at your appointment as the Bishop of the Southern Cross Diocese. This is a strong stand for biblical truth, and we trust the Lord preserves and keeps you, and uses you greatly.

We are most appreciative of the kindness shown to us, especially concerning theological education in NSW in the 1970s, and also the use of Anglican church buildings for worship and would be more than happy if we could help out in any way by facilitating the use of our properties and making them available to you and your flock.

In the meantime, be assured of our prayerful good will and eager interest in what the Lord is doing through you.

Kind regards in Christ

Rev. Dr Peter Barnes
Presbyterian Church of Australia

Endorsed heartily by previous Moderators-General: Rev. Dr John Wilson, Rev. David Cook, Rev. David Jones, Rev. Professor Allan Harman, Rev. Bruce Christian, Rev. Robert Benn, and Rev. Bob Thomas; and Rev. David Burke (Moderator-General Designate).

PDF file.

A Pastoral Letter from the Archbishop of Sydney — 25 August 2022

Archbishop Kanishka Raffel has today issued this Pastoral Letter (PDF file) with the full text of last week’s statement about the establishment of the Diocese of the Southern Cross.

The Doctrine of Marriage in the Anglican Church of Australia – Has it Changed?

“As the dust begins to settle over last week’s announced formation of the Diocese of the Southern Cross attention has naturally turned by some to the question of whether such an action was actually necessary. Has the doctrine of marriage actually changed in the Anglican Church of Australia? If it hasn’t, then why such an allegedly unnecessary and radical course of action?

The Primate of Australia, Archbishop Geoff Smith of Adelaide, issued a statement [pdf] on Thursday 18 August, the day on which Bishop Glenn Davies was formally commissioned as the first bishop of the new diocese.

Smith’s core complaint is clearly expressed:

The meeting of the General Synod held in May this year clearly affirmed the view that marriage is between a man and a woman, and declined to affirm same sex marriage. It is perplexing therefore that the leaders of this breakaway movement cite the reason for this new denomination as the failure of General Synod to explicitly express an opinion against the blessing of same sex marriages. …

The Primate claims that the doctrine of marriage has not changed and yet the revisionists now act as though it has.”

– David Ould takes a look at what has actually changed in the Anglican Church of Australia.

Armidale: We have no intention, nor need, to leave the Anglican Church of Australia

Bishop of Armidale Rod Chiswell has today published this statement on the diocesan website. Emphasis is original. –

24th August 2022.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

You probably have by now heard of the launch of the Diocese of the Southern Cross at the recent GAFCON Australia conference. This new diocese is a parallel Anglican structure outside of the Anglican Church of Australia. While some were dismayed at its establishment, I believe that it was a sad but necessary step at this point in time. The reality is that some Anglican evangelicals in dioceses led by liberal bishops who have a different view of the teaching of Scripture on matters concerning human sexuality, are looking for alternative episcopal oversight. Sometimes this is because they are being put under pressure by their bishop to step into line with the world’s way of thinking, other times it is a matter of conscience as they do not want to be led by bishops who they believe are leading God’s people contrary to God’s word. It is important to note that the Diocese of the Southern Cross has been activated solely as a safety net for these evangelical Anglicans.

Now, I suspect some evangelical clergy and laity in those dioceses will leave, others will stay. I don’t think that there will necessarily be a flood of evangelicals leave the Anglican Church of Australia to join the Diocese of the Southern Cross, but I trust that those who do will have good reason to do so. The leaders of GAFCON Australia have made clear that the Diocese of the Southern Cross will only remain while it is needed. If all Anglican bishops across Australia were to agree to the plain teaching of the Scriptures the parallel Anglican structure would no longer be needed.

With regard to the future of the Anglican Diocese of Armidale I want to make crystal clear that we have no intention, nor need, to leave the Anglican Church of Australia. The structure of the Anglican Church of Australia means that each of the twenty-three dioceses are autonomous and operate according to the decisions of their own synods. Thankfully the Armidale diocese has unity when it comes to upholding the plain teaching of Scripture in all matters of Christian life and doctrine, including human sexuality. We are thoroughly evangelical in this sense, with bishop, clergy and laity all on the same page. At this point in time, I stand with all other evangelical bishops in Australia when I say that we have no reason to abandon the Anglican Church of Australia. The ship as launched by Archbishop Cranmer in the 16th Century is a good one. Its constitution is sound, having excellent fundamental declarations and ruling principles that uphold the authority of Scriptures as primary.

In all of this we need to remember that God is still sovereign, Jesus is still King and He will build his church. May God strengthen us all to trust in Him and persevere with the main game in the Armidale Diocese which is “To Introduce All People to Jesus and Help Them Home to Heaven.”

With love in Christ, Rod Chiswell.

Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Armidale.

Source. Photo: Rod and Jenni Chiswell.

The Myth of the Via Media, and other Canterbury Tales

“Sometimes it is called fudge … And I say, hey, I like fudge, it’s a lot better than killing each other.”

So said Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, on the topic of Anglican identity, in an interview during the recent Lambeth Conference a fortnight ago. Personally, I too like fudge. Perhaps as much as Archbishop Cottrell. However, I am not as convinced that ‘fudge’ is a desirable description of authentic Anglicanism.

And I trust, most of you will agree with me that ‘fudge’ is not what we wish Australasian Anglicanism to taste like; that Anglican ‘fudge’ does not supply sufficient sustenance for us Australasian Anglicans, as we seek to proclaim the glories of Christ to the nations, and as we seek to strengthen the spiritual lives of the men, women, and children within our parishes. Milk it may very well contain, but something more meaty is needed to sustain Anglican identity.

The Australian Church Record has published the text of Dr Mark Earngey’s seminar at the GAFCON Australia Conference in Canberra last week.

He says, “I want to take you through two major misunderstandings: that of the so-called Anglican via media and that of the so-called Anglican three-legged-stool.”

It will repay careful reading!

Mark is Head of Church History at Moore College.

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