Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Breaking News

The letter below was sent from Bishop Daren Williams of the Anglican Church in America to the people of his diocese. The turning of ACA bishops to the Anglican Province in America (APA) was predicted on this blog on Sept. 2, as you can see here (and here). To read it, click on the images of the letter (two pages-one at a time), and you will be taken to a separate page for photographs. There you can hit the little circle with the plus (+) sign, and the image will become enlarged.


John A. Hollister said...

So now ACA members find their leaders recommending two inconsistent prospects, which are, in fact, about as far from each other as it is possible to imagine.

The Hepworth faction is recommending communion with Rome; Bp. Williams and another faction are recommending communion with the Reformed Episcopal Church (mediated through the APA). In sacramental terms, this is about as stark a difference as could be.

Is it too much to hope for that someone will step forward with a proposal that falls somewhere in the middle of these two extremes?

John A. Hollister+

charles said...

Hello Fr. Hollister,

Perhaps some know the APA / REC merger is as good as dead or at least is on simmer? The APA bishops voted against ACNA/REC, so this halts intercommunion. No one expects a "re-railing" until REC ends ties with ACNA and Lambeth. This is highly unlikely.

With the addition of solidly Anglo-Catholic bishops from ACA, the "traditionalist" party in APA will be strengthened. From what I understand, AB Grundorf was favorable to ACNA, but the college of bishops restrained that move. I don't think a second attempt will be made. Thus, Bp. Willaims may very well be vindicated. Also, if Bp. William is a 'gnesio'-AC, then you might even find APA moving to the 'right' rather vs. the 'left' witihin the Continuum. All in all, it will probably help ACC.

Anonymous said...

"Breaking News" - Hardly breaking news, this has been common knowledge for almost a year now. My mother told me when I was a youngster, to beware of men in pointed hats, most of them speak with forked tongues". So here's your proof of yet another three bishops who say one thing and do another in the name of Jesus Christ. Unity in the Continuum cannot happen as a whole, for there are to many dishonest leaders who are only in it for there own gain. If these three bishops were truthful, what they could not give up was there mitres, as would be required of Rome.

Fr.James A.Chantler said...

It is difficult,at best, to foresee all the problems which the Continuum will encounter as she coalesces. Still I am glad that at least three ACA Bishops want to disassociate themselves from the misadventure that the TAC's College Of Bishops have embarked upon and are trying to reach out to the APA.I think the prospects for a uniting and an eventual united Continuum are the best they've been in a very long time.

AFS1970 said...

Now I saw nothing in that letter specifically about the REC, although I believe the APA still has inter-communion with them. We have also only seen a letter from one Bishop, although he says he is one of many. There is really nothing to do but wait and see. Of course this should be done optimistically, as anything that brings together faithful Anglicans is a good thing.

However, I think that inter-communion between the APA & ACA is relatively far off and will never be accomplished until the Roman question is settled. In order for this type of relationship to form, there must be a common belief and with the signing of the CCC by ACA Bishops, this simply does not exist with the APA.

I am optimistic, in that I see three major benefits to this prospect. First and foremost it prepares a home for Anglicans in the ACA who still wish to remain Anglicans. Se3condly it brings that home under the same roof with their brother Anglicans in the APA. Thirdly, although this may just be a pipe dream, I see that any new merged jurisdiction is in a better position to come together with the near merger among the ACC/APCK/UECNA. As I have written before, this could bring us closer to real Anglican unity than we have ever been since 1976.

Anonymous said...

While the REC certainly crossed my mind as well reading this, I would hope that should intercommunion come to fruition between ACA & APA that there would be some sort of gravitational effect pulling all parties closer toward the mainstream of classical/Continuing Anglicanism.


amusing veriword: "plitanab" (verb: the act of two Continuing bodies coming together)???!!!

Fr. Robert Hart said...

One Anonymous commenter wrote:

"Breaking News" - Hardly breaking news, this has been common knowledge for almost a year now.

That is a flat out lie.

If these three bishops were truthful, what they could not give up was there mitres, as would be required of Rome.

I assume the brave ANONYMOUS Anonymous means "required by Rome." Notice, now that they stand against the party line, these bishops are labeled untruthful. This is the typical reaction against anyone who stands up to tyrants. Obviously, these three bishops have seen the error of their ways, have repented, and have done the only honest thing by recanting the party line.

AFS1970 said...

I remember reading somewhere about the Roman offer that Ordinaries, while not being bishops would still be allowed to dress like Bishops, so in effect it blows the wind right out of that "couldn't let go of their mitres" argument. Once again I will point out that the people who seem to think we have to many mitres do themselves not have them, which smacks just a bit of mitre envy.

I think if anything the two most likely options are that these Bishops have realized that while initially an interesting proposal the Roman offer is not all it is cracked up to be, or that they signed on to the CCC not thinking the offer would ever be forthcoming.

While I would prefer to see Anglican Bishops who did not flirt with Rome, I can not know the mind of another man so will not speculate to far as to the reasoning behind past or current actions by the ACA Bishops in question with regards to the Roman offer.

While there are some additional roadblocks, the ACA and APA still have more in common than they do not. This is hopefully a good first step.

Sean W. Reed said...


But Father Hart, Bishop Williams has not recanted the party line. I would have much more respect for him had he done so.

First, he needs to repudiate his agreement with the Catechism of the Catholic Church and explain how he doesn't believe it now, and really never meant it. It's time to fish or cut bait.

None of this comes as a surprise, nor is it really much of a concern for those parishes and individuals who are pleased with Anglicanorum Coetibus.

Speaking personally, the sooner the mess that is Anglicanism, both Continuuing and Canterbury, is in my rear-view mirror, the better.

We'll take the nice window dressing, and some of the comfortable and familiar surroundings of worship and prayer, and use them as we become a fully integrated part of the Church, led by the Successor of Peter.


George said...

Why is the REC intercommunion with APA such an issue? Have any of you read their document of agreement of Anglican belief and practice?

The document between them found here - http://rechurch.org/recus/?MIval=/recweb/anglican_belief_practice.pdf

It may not be perfect but this document has a basis for at least the talks between these separated bodies from PECUSA. Which of course is Now gone off the deep end but still. I think it is worth consider having the conversation about the Anglican bodies that are trying to preserve our traditions.

Just a thought....

Fr. Robert Hart said...

SWR has provided Exhibit A in the latest case against Roman arrogance and malice. How pleasant to have someone wishing us dead.

As the cowboy said to the Muslim in the movie Hidalgo, "Good luck to you too."

Sean W. Reed said...


Father Hart wrote:

"...How pleasant to have someone wishing us dead..."

And where did you come up with this - I said nothing of the sort.


John A. Hollister said...

Sean W.R. wrote, of those who feel drawn to "Anglicanorum coetibus": "We'll ... take become a fully integrated part of the Church, led by the Successor of Peter."

And, out of several competing claimants, which Patriarch of Antioch would that be, pray tell?

John A. Hollister+

John A. Hollister said...

George asked: "Why is the REC intercommunion with APA such an issue? Have any of you read their document of agreement of Anglican belief and practice?"

Yes, George, we have read it. So we have noticed that it says absolutely nothing about the basic problem that the founders of the REC as a separate jurisdiction explicitly rejected the Apostolic Succession as having any meaning and also explicitly rejected the possibility of the Sacraments' having any objective operation as channels of grace.

In other words, they were pure 19th Century Protestants, true successors to the Puritans, who believed -- as Protestants still do to this day -- that the Sacraments are mere symbols or memorial signs (NOT using "memorial" in the sense of "anamnesis").

So when Bp. Cummins ordained a man, he most probably did not intend to ordain him to the ancient Sacramental ministry in the Apostolic Succession, in which Bp. Cummins did not believe, but instead into a typical post-Reformation Protestant preaching ministry.

The fact that the REC's 2001 agreement with the APA could be read to suggest that some within it have abandoned these peculiar beliefs does not alter the fact that the REC is, in its constituent documents, still committed to them and that it still uses the Sacramentally deficient 1785 draft BCP (that's the one that the English Bishops told PECUSA would have to be dropped before they would consecrate Bishops for the new American Province).

Where "intercommunion" means nothing unless it means that each party adopts as its own and ratifies the purportedly Sacramental acts of the other, the fact of the APA's intercommunion with the REC is to reduce the Sacraments administered by both to their lowest common denominator, which is Bp. Cummins' symbolic "memorial" concept.

THAT is why "the REC intercommunion with APA [is] such an issue".

Please note, however, this is a question of technical Sacramental validity. There is no doubt whatever that the REC is a good church, composed of fine Christians, who are devoted to Scripture. They are, in my view, the very last true "mainstream Protestant church". If, through the use by some REC members of the 1662 and 1928 BCPs, a sufficient number of them pray themselves back into their Catholic heritage, the Sacramental problem could be cured from outside. However, thanks to the magic of intercommunion and in order to secure the consciences of all, it would now have to be cured throughout not only the REC itself but also throughout its partner in communion, the APA.

Until that is done, the loyal ACA members would be better off standing aside. Of course, it may be that the prospect of their joining could give them enough leverage to negotiate a top-to-bottom resacralization of the APA and the REC; certainly that is something to be hoped and prayed for.

John A. Hollister+

W.C. Wallace said...

"But Father Hart, Bishop Williams has not recanted the party line. I would have much more respect for him had he done so. First, he needs to repudiate his agreement with the Catechism of the Catholic Church and explain how he doesn't believe it now, and really never meant it. It's time to fish or cut bait."

Yes, quite so. Bp. Williams, et al, must publicly repudiate and explain this whole sorry episode. This would go a long way in restoring lost trust.

AnglicanContinuer said...

Sean said:

Speaking personally, the sooner the mess that is Anglicanism, both Continuuing and Canterbury, is in my rear-view mirror, the better.

If Anglicanism is really that bad, if there's nothing to hold on to but "window dressing", and if the Roman Catholic Church is that right and good and complete, why would you continue in such distress? You can attend your nearest Roman parish at the very latest this Sunday, you can stop reading Anglican blogs, and have us in your rear-view mirror now.

I'm honestly not trying to be flippant. When I first heard of the TAC's overture to Rome, I was told that the goal was intercommunion, i.e., remaining Anglican while finding common ground with Rome. I just don't see anything resembling this now; rather, I read about such things as the need to submit to the CCC in its entirety and personal admissions of embarrassment at having once called oneself "Anglican Catholic".

For a while I thought the calls of "Just go!" were unnecessarily dismissive, but in the essays I'm reading now I'm finding myself genuinely puzzled. If we are truly that bad and Anglicanism is so deficient, why would anyone not experience the fullness of Rome and start attending Roman parishes immediately?

Bruce Wilcox

charles said...

What gets me is why these ACA bishops didn't leave upon the signing of the RC catechism. Sean certainly has a point here. Perhaps I am second guessing, but it seems to me they've left not over doctrinal issues so much as the ecclesiastical details of Anglicanorum coebitus. To me this indicates a sorry state of Anglican identity, and I am not certain about the benefit of an infusion of ACA clergy, especially bishops.

However, I do agree with AFS1970 that APA merger will ultimately bring St. Louis bodies together, converging on a more common theology defined by Missal, ACC canons, and Affirmation. In the big picture, ACA infusion brings APA closer to the official PCK/ACC position, thus a overall 'rightward' shift.

AnglicanContinuer said...

charles said...

Perhaps I am second guessing, but it seems to me they've left not over doctrinal issues so much as the ecclesiastical details of Anglicanorum coebitus.

For what it's worth, Bishop Williams was adamant that doctrinal differences were crucial (and would be "deal breakers", if I recall his words correctly) in meetings with my Parish and its vestry in early 2009.

Bruce Wilcox

Sean W. Reed said...


Bruce -

It is a really simple answer. We made a request to the Holy See. The Holy See could have simply replied join the local Roman Catholic Parish, or start an Anglican Use Parish of your own.

Instead the Holy Father said the following, and that is the route some of us have decided to take.

You can question and second guess our decision to your hearts content. Running and simply joining the local Roman Catholic Parish is against the intention and purpose of the Apostolic Constitution, and does not allow us in the language of Anglicanorum Coetibus to "... maintain the liturgical, spiritual and pastoral traditions of the Anglican Communion within the Catholic Church, as a precious gift nourishing the faith of the members of the Ordinariate and as a treasure to be shared..."

"...In recent times the Holy Spirit has moved groups of Anglicans to petition repeatedly and insistently to be received into full Catholic communion individually as well as corporately. The Apostolic See has responded favorably to such petitions. Indeed, the successor of Peter, mandated by the Lord Jesus to guarantee the unity of the episcopate and to preside over and safeguard the universal communion of all the Churches,[1] could not fail to make available the means necessary to bring this holy desire to realization.

The Church, a people gathered into the unity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,[2] was instituted by our Lord Jesus Christ, as “a sacrament – a sign and instrument, that is, of communion with God and of unity among all people.”[3] Every division among the baptized in Jesus Christ wounds that which the Church is and that for which the Church exists; in fact, “such division openly contradicts the will of Christ, scandalizes the world, and damages that most holy cause, the preaching the Gospel to every creature.”[4] Precisely for this reason, before shedding his blood for the salvation of the world, the Lord Jesus prayed to the Father for the unity of his disciples.[5]

It is the Holy Spirit, the principle of unity, which establishes the Church as a communion.[6] He is the principle of the unity of the faithful in the teaching of the Apostles, in the breaking of the bread and in prayer.[7] The Church, however, analogous to the mystery of the Incarnate Word, is not only an invisible spiritual communion, but is also visible;[8] in fact, “the society structured with hierarchical organs and the Mystical Body of Christ, the visible society and the spiritual community, the earthly Church and the Church endowed with heavenly riches, are not to be thought of as two realities. On the contrary, they form one complex reality formed from a two-fold element, human and divine.”[9] The communion of the baptized in the teaching of the Apostles and in the breaking of the eucharistic bread is visibly manifested in the bonds of the profession of the faith in its entirety, of the celebration of all of the sacraments instituted by Christ, and of the governance of the College of Bishops united with its head, the Roman Pontiff.[10]

This single Church of Christ, which we profess in the Creed as one, holy, catholic and apostolic “subsists in the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the Bishops in communion with him. Nevertheless, many elements of sanctification and of truth are found outside her visible confines. Since these are gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ, they are forces impelling towards Catholic unity.”[11]

In the light of these ecclesiological principles, this Apostolic Constitution provides the general normative structure for regulating the institution and life of Personal Ordinariates for those Anglican faithful who desire to enter into the full communion of the Catholic Church in a corporate manner. This Constitution is completed by Complementary Norms issued by the Apostolic See..."


AFS1970 said...

I will admit to knowing very little about the REC and their history, although I am going to try and learn more.

Regardless of what current REC clergy think, feel or believe, if that body was founded on the idea that apostolic succession is not needed, would that not call into question their entire lineage? If this is the case, I can see this being a problem for the APA in terms of unity with other continuing church bodies. For that matter what does it say about various acts performed by REC Bishops for the (new) ACNA including the enthronement of Archbishop Duncan? Could this be a problem for long term unity?

Anonymous said...

Although Bp Grundorf and the APA has had dealings with the REC (even to the point of joint websites and rumors of impending merger), I thought that courtship had cooled and the marriage had been called off. That relationship goes back to the earlist days of AFMC's organization, the American Episcopal Church. But what exactly is the relationship between APA and REC at this point? Specifically, the APA consecrated a new bishop just a few days ago, a good man who will in all likelihood steer APA away from vagantism and back toward authentic Catholic Anglicanism. Did REC bishops have any role in that Consecration?

Jackie K. said...

I hope I'm not the only person confused by the alphabet soup.To all those who want to go to Rome under the AC---- if, your heart, you're Anglican, how can you go to Rome? If, in your heart, you're Roman, then go in peace. Intercommunion is about equal partners agreeing on the "big" stuff, not 90/10, not 80/20, not even 60/40 but EQUAL. Sure, we'd all love to see unity in the Church, but if we compromise our position, how are we any better than those that caused us to stand firm and leave the Episcopal Church in the first place? Either you are committed to what you believe is right or you are not. If you are not, stop trying to convince me and others that you are.

Fr. Robert Hart said...


Are you trying to blaspheme by your constant use of the Holy Family's initials in that sort of "Good Grief!" tone that comes across?

Anyway, I am impressed that you can cut and paste from Vatican documents so diligently, but unimpressed by your gullibility. You have decided, against all evidence, to grant credence to Hepworth & Co.'s dishonest spin of Anglicanorum Coetibus. However, those of us who can remember all the way, way, way back to 2007, know perfectly well that the new constitution is not a "yes" answer to the TAC request of that time, nor of any TAC request prior to it.

Anglicanorum Coetibus is nothing but slightly more generous terms of full and complete surrender. If you believe all that stuff about "the Successor of Peter"-- even outside of Antioch (the only genuinely and universally recognized "See of Peter" before the early medieval period)-- then you must stop wasting time.

If you really are silly enough to believe that the new constitution would allow you to "... maintain the liturgical, spiritual and pastoral traditions of the Anglican Communion within the [b][Roman][/b] Catholic Church, as a precious gift nourishing the faith of the members of the Ordinariate and as a treasure to be shared...", but still want to drive so far from Anglicanism that it does not appear in your rear view mirror, them I will remind you that "A double minded man is unstable in all his ways." (James 1:8)

Here is what would really happen.

1. Your clergy would all become laymen overnight.
2. Some would be allowed into a process that can take about two to three years (on average) to have their individual cases reviewed about possible "ordination" as RCC clergy.
3. You would have to renounce every point in Anglican theology, even though it conforms to the doctrine of the Apostolic Church, in matters where it does not conform to Rome's "Development of Doctrine" into the current unrecognizable shape of RCC doctrine.

Why, when Rome has lost its moral credibility with its weakness exposed before the whole world, has the TAC decided to embrace it as the great white hope?

John A. Hollister said...

AFS1970 wrote, "[W]hat does it say about various acts performed by REC Bishops for the (new) ACNA including the enthronement of Archbishop Duncan [that the REC was founded on the idea that apostolic succession is neither needed nor possible]? Could this be a problem for long term unity?"

First, it would be hard to damage the ACNA's claims to Apostolic Succession any more than the ACNA has already done for itself by its acceptance of women's "ordination". By doing so, the ACNA has put itself in precisely the same position as the post-1976 PECUSA, which is the whole reason there is a Continuing Church movement in the first place.

Second, both the REC's and the ACNA's innovations in traditional Catholic ordination practice amount to rejections of Apostolic Succession, although by different means and for different reasons. Thus there seems little reason they should not enjoy unity among themselves although this fact SHOULD have great implications for the chances -- or rather, the impossibility -- of unity between either one or both of them and any portion of the Church Catholic.

John A. Hollister+

charles said...

Dear Jackie,

Amen! You said: "Intercommunion is about equal partners agreeing on the "big" stuff, not 90/10, not 80/20, not even 60/40 but EQUAL."

This is a significant point I've tried to share in the past. Ecumenicalism will only be a self-negating, one-way street until Anglicanism can regroup into something with more equity. Dialoguing with ROCOR, Rome, etc., is going to do more harm than good until an Anglican communion emerges that adheres strongly to historical standards.

To some extent, this means we better retrench and first affirm our protestant identity. The Settlement is really the 'elephant in the room'. What is our relationship to it? That's a knotty question. Of course, by settlement I mean the normative authority of BCP, 39 articles, canons, two books of homilies, even the longer catechisms w/ salient divines that back them up.

The later (homilies and catechisms) are the 'meat on the bones' of articles and prayer book. What St. Louis did was basically replace these contextualizing documents for the catholic traditions expressed in the Affirmation.

Anyway, north America needs a nucleus for orthodoxy. If the St. Louis churches want to form that nucleus, they need to rewrite certain areas of the Affirmation, favoring the Settlement and Anglican-protestant Identity. I know that's a hard order, but part of it requires coming home to a northern catholicism which broadly defines the protestant reformation. Otherwise, I believe, the 1976 churches will continue to spin their wheels, accomplishing little aside from acting as a propaganda piece for larger catholic churches: sometimes for Rome, at others for ROC/EO.

In sum, please stop the insanity and feast heartily on the Settlement!

Fr. Robert Hart said...


The only bone I pick is this: If I thought that the Affirmation of St. Louis contradicted the classic Anglican Formularies, I could not consent to it. But, I do affirm the Affirmation, because I find it easy to reconcile it to the Formularies, and so it was intended to be understood when written in 1977.

AFS1970 said...

I will agree that inter-communion is about equal partners agreeing on the "big" stuff, however there is no guarantee that the final result would be 50/50 or even 90/10. It would be more fair to say that each equal partner must admit at least the possibility that the final result will be 100/0. That is the truly open mind one must go into. If you go into it expecting 50/50 you are by the very nature saying that you and your future communion partner have been only half right all along. This is actually a lesson that the continuum can use also. If there was one large unified continuing church made up of the probably close to a dozen churches that consider themselves Anglican here in the USA, the fact that some part of the resulting canons would come from nearly all of them is fairly reasonable to expect. Would it be absolutely equal, I doubt it.

charles said...

Fr. Hart,

I am glad you can read the Settlement standards into the Affirmation. But others do not. And in many cases they are left to a local option. So, shouldn't a reading that is more plain and obvious be pursued? At the very least, revise the Affirmation to clear away the ambiguities. I think this is the Most Reverend Robinson's position?

Again, the fact ACA/TAC clerics and bishops may jump ship does not address the greater and defining question: What normative authority does the Settlement have? Both left and rightwing Anglicanism have yet to answer this.

The Most Reverend Chandler Holder Jones, SSC said...

Father Wells,

Thank you for your kind comments about me upon my recent Consecration! No REC bishops participated in my consecration on 18th September; rather the Bishops were from the APA and the Diocese of the Holy Cross.

God bless you!


Fr.Jas.A.Chantler said...

The consecration of +Chandler Holder Jones is a blessing for the APA and another reason why many (myself included) are more optimistic about the future for a uniting Continuum than we've been in a long while. He'd be great addition the Continuum blog's panel.

George said...


I do agree to some extent that their maybe doubts about the REC succession. However, I have found a document that documents almost all the Continuum's lines of succession including the REC. It is up to date as of 1992 I believe. I would be willing to share the document for review for accuracy.

The REC has used the same Ordinal with the laying of hands like all other churches that episcopal. And the document I provided to maintain the orthodox belief of regularizing orders within their branch is the norm. So could argue at some point their maybe a break in the line. However, if the REC is maintaining the 3 levels of Holy Orders and follow the Ordinal. I find it hard to suggest their is deficiency in their ranks. The REC only accepts males into Holy Orders. If a female minister from another branch within the ACNA went to an RE church. They would not be allowed to conduct the office of Holy Communion.

if you could cite anything specifically within the document that is contestable. The document I believe is a positive thing and it allows for the respect for each of the different branches where they have differed in the past. It is also recognizing a place to start from in order to achieve unity. Why not start with the common ground rather than our differences?

I believe Apostolic Succession is important. However, I would be hard pressed to present that is necessary for Salvation. I have read Fr. Harts articles here about succession. Please do correct me and point me to the specifics. I don't remember in the Councils or know of in written documents about Holy Traditions that specifically address the issue of Apostolic Succession.

AFS1970 said...

I wholeheartedly agree that we should concentrate on the common ground first. However we can not afford to ignore the differences in the name of unity if that unity will not last very long in the face of those differences.

One key factor in ordination is that of intent. If your concept of what a Priest or Bishop is is not the same as other churches, then by definition your intent to ordain can not be the same as those other churches. I have no doubts that the REC intends to ordain, the question is what position/order are you being ordained into? I don't know enough about the REC or their history to answer this myself.

We already know that there are different concepts attached to the word Priest. Take TEC for example. Can it really be said that KJS has the same intent as a real Bishop when ordaining someone, especially one of their radical priestesses? Even if she had the intent, can it be said that they are being ordained into the same order as a Priest in another church? I do not mean to compare the REC and the TEC, but simply to show a drastic example.

Anonymous said...

Bishop Jones: Thank you for the information concerning your Consecration. That may help simplify matters in discussions which I hope will take place soon.


George writes: "The REC has used the same Ordinal with the laying of hands like all other churches that episcopal."

Sorry, George. As we all know, the REC departed from PECUSA because its Puritan nose had detected "Catholicising germs" in our Prayer Book and quickly acted to remove them.

I happen to own a copy of the REC Prayer Book of 1932. Its "Ordinal" shows radical surgery and doctrinal mutilation of the non-sacrament of Ordination. The important "Preface" was deleted in its entirety; a "Catholicising germ," to be sure.

But more to the point, the formula derived from the Pre-Reformation Ordination rites, "Receive the Holy Ghost for the Office and Work of a Priest...." is also deleted. All that remains is the weak alternative, first proposed in 1792 and opposed by Bishop Seabury, beginning "Take thou authority..." The term priest is supplanted by presbyter, and the bishop is addressed as "Reverend Brother in Christ."

Your claim that the REC uses the same Ordinal is unfortunately less than accurate. I am more than familiar with the REC's attempt to reinvent itself as a "classically Anglican" body. But in viw of the history, that will not be easy to accomplish.

Anonymous said...

There is rarely a week that goes by when I do not visit this blog and greatly enjoy the teaching that I find here. But I must say that as a priest in the REC, I am greatly disappointed with the turn that this thread has taken (I did say priest--if I understand the etymology of the English word correctly, the word priest is derived from prester which was originally derived from presbyter--but I digress). Much of what is said of the REC in this post is true and much of it is not. Without question, we have a somewhat checkered past. But the last time that I read the Scriptures (and Church history), I believe that we are all in that same boat to one degree or another. The REC has been in the process of reformation--according to the Scriptures and the teachings of the Fathers. You can see this in our 2003 BCP and in our discussions with the APA. I would have thought that this move toward classical Anglicanism would have brought rejoicing from our brothers in the Continuum--not further scorn and derision. Pray for us and we will pray for you that we might come to unity in the faith.