The Church of England fears that Archbishops from conservative countries will walk out of a week-long summit called by Archbishop Justin Welby over the issue of gay rights.

A summit in Canterbury next week will see leaders of the worldwide Anglican Church meet in a ‘make or break’ effort to avert a permanent split over gay rights and same-sex marriage.

In what would be an embarrassing blow to Archbishop Welby’s authority, it’s claimed that a group of between eight to 12 conservative archbishops from Africa and Asia are preparing to leave the meeting unless more liberal countries ‘repent’, or the Archbishop throws them out.

The Church has been in conflict for over a decade, sparked by the US Episcopal Church’s consecrating of gay priest, Gene Robinson, as bishop of New Hampshire in 2003, causing conservatives to accuse liberals of abandoning the word of God.

Archbishop Stanley Ntagali, leader of the Anglican church in Uganda, a country in which being gay is illegal said that he would walk out of the meeting if “discipline and godly order is not restored”.

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