Real listening at Lambeth

Phil Groves, who led the Listening Process for the Anglican Communion Office received this letter and permission to share it:

From: Pradeep Kumar Samantaroy

Sent: 02 August 2008 20:35

To: Phil Groves

Subject: Love Unites

Dear Phil,

It was nice to talk to you this evening. I thank God for your ministry of listening. I know it is one of the most important yet challenging ministries of the Church today. I wish to share some of my thoughts with you.

I am serving the people of the Diocese of Amritsar, Church of North India, in the states of Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir. I came to attend the Lambeth Conference with lot of questions in my mind about the issue of human sexuality as I knew this issue has threatened the unity in the Anglican Communion. Coming from a conservative back-ground I was not even prepared to listen to any person who supported the gay and lesbian people. However, the Indaba experience has changed my opinion. After listening to the stories of bishops coming from different cultural contexts I have become aware of the pain and agony people have bear because of our attitude towards each other. Further, I am convinced that despite their different and often opposite positions all are committed to live and grow within the Anglican family. The binding force in a family is love. If we love one another we learn to transcend our differences and don’t hesitate to sacrifice our own interests for the sake of the family unity. This is possible only when we are willing to listen to each other. The amount of sacrifices I make is dependent on the depth of my love and intimacy of my relationship.

As for me I have decided not to be hasty in judging the gay and the lesbians. I wish to learn more about their life and problems. I have also decided to regularly pray for them. I wish to encourage the other members of the Anglican Communion to do the same.

You may share my thoughts with other like-minded persons.


Bunu (Bishop P. K. Samantaroy)

P.S. Please feel free to edit my letter as English is not my first language

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