Three decades ago, the Fellowship of Concerned Churchmen gathered at St. Louis for a Congress and with gratitude, I remember them, as I write this note from St. Louis. The faith once delivered unto the saints has been subjected to so much compromise. Will we able to foster the integrity of the affirmation of St. Louis and the continuing church movement within traditional Anglicanism?
ACC and UECNA have set the ball rolling (Read my previous posting on ACC-UECNA Communion Agreement).It’s up to us and all the concerned bishops who thirst for the integrity of faith, to realize the need to come together. There are federations, coalitions formed and floated these days but at what cost? Compromising here and there, like on women’s ordination and the theological and liturgical (sacramental) practices. Can we go on board with such coalition? Certainly we can’t.
And that leaves us with their parlance of a ‘number game!’ “O they are a small group, they can’t do much for you,”…etc. If numbers are the ultimate criterion to measure the integrity of faith once delivered unto the saints then the apostles, who were a bunch of fishermen should have been a great fiasco. God intended it otherwise. That these handful men should take the Gospel to the four corners of the earth and preach. And we have seen the results of such a movement guided by the Holy Spirit that has been handed down to us. Remember Jesus’ example of a tiny mustard seed?
Those that sit in the luxury of big group (number game lovers), should realize that we are but humble servants and we have the duty and responsibility to take care of the sheep. If one is feeling secure that he is the administrator of the church properties and finds security and defense within the codes of canon law, then he is living in a fool’s paradise. We are called to be shepherds and not owners and deliberators of properties.
What do traditional Anglican churches have in common? Is that the core belief and faith that has been delivered to the saints in Scripture, Sacraments and Tradition? Or the faith that has undergone so much ramifications down these thirty some years under Episcopal Church USA and has cast a devastating effect on the spiritual and moral ethos of Anglicanism? Does your Anglican church accept everything and want to be part of the Anglican Communion that embraces the modified faith and morals of ECUSA, except homosexuality?
Could one embrace a pastoral oversight from overseas, when they want to play the number game and leave their faithful people more confused and without guidance? If I may borrow the current scenario from the business world, it’s a form of outsourcing. The CEOs are outside the United States, well established in their own comfort zone and yet wanting to provide oversight! We have seen what such oversights have done and what has come of them. The crux of the matter is service to each and every member of your congregation. It boils down to spiritual and sacramental care of each faithful member in the Anglican way.
There is no dearth of traditional Anglicanism within the USA that we need to look for oversight from overseas. This is a free country and one is free to embrace, but if you do care for people and their souls, please rethink your strategy and let the Holy Spirit lead and guide you.
And dear faithful Anglicans do not let yourself be hurt time and again. With so much difficulty you sift the chaff from the wheat and put all your eggs in one basket, and there again deja vous!
You can’t be hurt over and over and over again. Look at the continuing church movement that has proved its metal over the three decades and in spite of struggles and difficulties, has managed to care for its faithful in a dedicated way: The Anglican Catholic Church, The Anglican Province of Christ the King and The United Episcopal Church of North America. We are here to serve you. This is the reason there is no federation gimmicks or compromises. If thirty years of fidelity through the continuing church movement means something to you, call on us and we are here for you and serve you. Fidelity to Christ and the Gospel in the Scripture, Sacrament and Apostolic Tradition is our sole motto and we will continue to foster and grow this faith until His second coming!