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Page last updated at 15:35 GMT, Friday, 18 July 2008 16:35 UK

Battle of the bishops

The future of the Church of England, and its sister churches in the worldwide Anglican Communion, depends on who wins an unprecedented struggle for power.

Archbishop Peter Akinola
Battle of the Bishops
Monday, 21 July, 2008
1900 BST on BBC Two

This World reveals the story of the man and the movement that seeks to challenge the Archbishop of Canterbury as the focus of the worldwide Anglican Church, in order to restore family values in a church that will have no place for openly homosexual clergy.

Reporter Ben Anderson is given unique access to Archbishop Peter Akinola - leader of the Anglican Church in Nigeria - as he and his followers prepare for an unprecedented summit in Jerusalem that aims to unite disaffected conservatives across the Anglican world.

Many of the headlines regarding the Church of England since 2002 have regarded the rights of homosexual priests. The Church of England allows for the ordination of gay priests as long as they are celibate.

Alongside issues of homosexual clergy, the wider Anglican Communion has been wrestling with whether to sanction same-sex blessings.

These issues have caused divisions within the Anglican Communion, with the provinces of the global south (Nigeria, South East Asia, South America among many others) threatening to split permanently from those sanctioning the blessing of same-sex relationships and the ordination of non-celibate gay clergy.

This World will be broadcast on Monday 21 July at 1900 BST on BBC Two.

Filmed and directed by Nick Read
Executive producers: Lucy Hetherington, Nick Stuart and Tracey Gardiner


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