Category : Ministry of the Ordained

Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon–Of what does the Hope of Heaven Consist (Isaiah 2:1-5)?

Posted in * By Kendall, * South Carolina, Eschatology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Sermons & Teachings, Theology: Scripture

Please join us in giving thanks today for Anglican Bishop Chip Edgar of South Carolina

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon-What is the Meaning of the Feast of Christ the King and How does it impact us?

Listen to it all and there is more there.

Posted in * By Kendall, * South Carolina, Christology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Sermons & Teachings, Theology: Scripture

We are Gone Until Thursday for the Anglican Diocese of SC Clergy Retreat

We would appreciate your prayers.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

(Churchman) J I Packer–Expository Preaching: Charles Simeon and ourselves

[Charles] Simeon himself is our example here. The feature of his preaching which most constantly impressed his hearers was the fact that he was, as they said, “in earnest”; and that reflected his own overwhelming sense of sin, and of the wonder of the grace that had saved him; and that in turn bore witness to the closeness of his daily fellowship and walk with his God. As he gave time to sermon preparation, so he gave time to seeking God’s face.

“The quality of his preaching,” writes the Bishop of Bradford, “was but a reflection of the quality of the man himself. And there can be little doubt that the man himself was largely made in the early morning hours which he devoted to private prayer and the devotional study of the Scriptures. It was his custom to rise at 4 a.m., light his own fire, and then devote the first four hours of the day to communion with God. Such costly self-discipline made the preacher. That was primary. The making of the sermon was secondary and derivative.”

Read it all.

Posted in Church History, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics

(C of E) How words of familiar prayers or hymns help people with dementia

Residents at Westview House in Totland Bay, on the Isle of Wight might be living with dementia – but they could remember the words to the Lord’s Prayer.

As Anne Powell started to lead the informal service in the care home, several seemed initially confused about what was going on.

But when Anne started to lead them in the words of the Lord’s Prayer, something amazing happened. Long-term memories kicked in, as many of them recited the words they had learnt decades ago. Something similar happened as they started to sing ‘All things bright and beautiful’.

This is the kind of ministry that Anne Powell offers regularly, as an ‘Anna Chaplain’.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England, England / UK, Health & Medicine, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Care, Psychology, Religion & Culture

Communiqué From The Gafcon Primates Council

2. Fresh Challenges Facing the Anglican Communion

The original GAFCON in Jerusalem in 2008 was born out of the tragic cost that has come from Provinces that have departed from clear biblical teaching and established historic Anglican Formularies that were unquestioned until recent years. Those departures continue and are even spreading. We were deeply grieved by the recent appointment of a man who lives in a same-sex civil partnership as Dean of Canterbury Cathedral. It is a heartbreaking provocation that such a departure from biblical standards would be thrust upon the Communion in the historic See of Canterbury and in opposition to the established teaching and practice of the majority of Anglicans.

The announcement from the Archbishop of Canterbury distanced himself from this appointment, as it was the recommendation of a Selection Panel, requiring the Queen’s approval. Yet it is difficult to see how a Diocesan Bishop, let alone the Archbishop of Canterbury, could not influence the appointment of the Dean of his own Cathedral, especially given the published process for the Appointment of Deans. Moreover, filling this position was the responsibility of Mr. Stephen Knott, the Archbishop’s Secretary for Appointments, who is himself in a same-sex marriage. It is disingenuous, if not duplicitous, for the Archbishop to claim that the Church of England has not changed its doctrine of marriage, when he has engaged an Appointments Secretary, whose own union is a living contradiction of marriage as God has ordained it, and which the Church of England claims to uphold. By empowering Mr Knott to oversee the appointments of senior positions in the Church of England, it is hardly surprising that the recommended nominee was likewise in a same-sex relationship. Clearly, the process for appointing senior positions in the Church of England needs to be reformed, so that decisions are in the hands of those who abide by the teaching of the Church of England, especially in relation to same-sex marriage and civil partnerships, which are generally perceived as a cloak for homosexual activity.

Furthermore, while Dean David Monteith’s long term civil partnership may have gone under the radar in Leicester Cathedral, the moral character of the Dean of Canterbury has ramifications for the whole Communion. Canterbury has a place in our history which needs to be preserved, rather than undermined. At the recent Lambeth Conference, the Archbishop of Canterbury affirmed Resolution I.10 of the 1998 Lambeth Conference. Regrettably, the Archbishop will be perceived as advocating the very opposite of this resolution by refusing to prevent this appointment. The so-called instrument of unity has sadly become an instrument of disunity. The tear in the fabric of the Communion has only deepened, perhaps irreparably.

The Anglican Communion evolved as a communion of Churches who held to the Reformation Formularies. Yet the Anglican Communion has over the last twenty-five years slowly but irretrievably abandoned the clear teaching of Scripture on not only matters of human sexuality but the very nature of the gospel. Yet those who remain true to the teaching of Scripture, especially in upholding Resolution I.10, are the true inheritors of the Anglican Communion. By contrast, the Canterbury Communion best describes those who accept the double speak of saying Resolution I.10 is our doctrine, but it is all right to disown it, because “we have studied the Scriptures over many years and prayed about it”. One can only wonder what Athanasius would have said if Arius had made the same claim! Yet those on two divergent paths cannot walk together, as the Council of Nicaea clearly demonstrated. We deeply lament the advocacy for unbiblical practice, and the promotion of those whose lives betray an abandonment of Christian morality. The Archbishop of Canterbury has become complicit in this trend, while providing little support for biblical orthodoxy, or offering any support for those orthodox Anglicans who are mistreated in their provinces by the revisionist agenda of bishops who defy not only Resolution I.10, but the clear teaching of Jesus in Matthew 19:4-9.

Read it all.

Posted in --Civil Unions & Partnerships, --Justin Welby, Anthropology, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), Ethics / Moral Theology, GAFCON, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon–What does the Bible really say about how we are to understand and use the gift of money God has given us (Proverbs 3:5ff)

You may listen directly or download it if you prefer.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * By Kendall, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Personal Finance & Investing, Sermons & Teachings, Stewardship, Theology, Theology: Scripture

The Anglican Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic PR on Chris Warner’s election today as Bishop

From there:

Woodbridge, VA (October 15, 2022) – The clergy and lay delegates of the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic (DOMA) elected on the second ballot the Rev. Chris Warner to be the next diocesan bishop at a special electing Synod at All Saints’ Church in Woodbridge, VA. Pending the consent of the Anglican Church in North America’s College of Bishops in January, Bishop-Elect Warner will be consecrated at The Falls Church Anglican in Falls Church, VA on February 18, 2023.

Bishop-Elect Warner is the Rector of the Church of the Holy Cross, Sullivan’s Island/Daniel Island, SC. Prior to his time as Rector, he was an Associate Rector at Church of the Holy Cross, Rector at St. Christopher Camp and Conference Center, and Curate at Trinity Episcopal Church in Columbus, GA. He married Catherine in 1993, and they have three children (27, 24, and 23).

Bishop-Elect Warner addressed the delegates saying, “I’m honored and humbled to have been selected to serve DOMA as bishop-elect. I’m aware that those of us who serve the Lord in vocational ministry must never believe we do so because we ‘qualify.’ We serve because the Lord calls. And those whom He calls, He then equips. This keeps us dependent upon the Lord and Jesus receives the glory he rightly deserves. I ask your prayers and I pledge my prayers for you. I’m truly excited to see what God will do as we serve together in the years to come.”

On Sept. 14, 2021, Bishop John Guernsey called for the Diocese to begin the process leading to the election and consecration of his successor and to his retirement. On July 17, 2022, the Committee on Nominations announced the final slate of three candidates. As part of the process leading to the election, the candidates participated in two events on September 27 and 28 where they joined in a live Q&A session with delegates. For election, the Constitution and Canons of the Diocese require a majority of the votes cast by each order (lay and clergy) on the same ballot.

The Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic is a regional diocese of the Anglican Church in North America dedicated to reaching North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ. The Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic consists of 40 Congregations, Missions, and Mission Fellowships in Virginia, Maryland, Washington, D.C., Delaware, eastern West Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. Several more are in formation.

Posted in * South Carolina, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Children, Marriage & Family, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Chris Warner Elected next Anglican Bishop of the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic

Posted in * South Carolina, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

([London Times) Kallistos Ware–Gentle-voiced Oxford don and Greek Orthodox bishop who spread understanding of his faith in the English-speaking worl

The young Ware had entered a world of perpetual controversy, between different nations and ethnicities and between different shades of ideology. The remainder of his life was devoted to wrestling with these contradictions and helping others to do so.

Having won a King’s Scholarship to study classics at Magdalen College, Oxford, he took a double first and wrote a doctoral thesis on St Mark the Ascetic. At the same time he deepened his commitment to Orthodoxy. He loved Russian spirituality but was wary of being embroiled in Russian controversies. His wisest Russian mentors advised moving closer to the religious mainstream and joining the Greek church, into which he was received in 1958, later being elevated to the priesthood, tonsured as a monk and given the name Kallistos in 1966.

By that time he had been guided by Amphilochios Makris, a visionary monastic on Patmos, who said that care for the environment, especially trees, was a Christian duty. It was this monk, canonised in 2018, who advised the young Englishman that his future lay in teaching Orthodox Christianity in the West.

Ware faithfully carried out this mission during three decades as an Oxford lecturer, presenting arcane theological issues with clarity and humour.

Read it all.

Posted in Church History, Church of England (CoE), Death / Burial / Funerals, History, Ministry of the Ordained, Orthodox Church, Theology

(Anglican Diocese of SC) Developing a Diocesan Ministry Strategy

This past month, Bishop Edgar changed the way we, as a diocese, provide ministry support, moving from staffing certain positions full-time to working with Canons who are “in the trenches” serving in a church. This “seemed to me a strategic way for our diocese to move forward,” said the Bishop. “Compared to full-time diocesan ministry staff, Canons are more cost-effective, increase cooperation between parishes and the diocese, and allow us to focus on a greater number of potential ministry emphases.”

While his plan was to fade out the full-time positions over time, the financial uncertainty introduced by the South Carolina Supreme Court’s decision, led him to move that time-frame forward.

As a result, both Dave Wright, our Diocesan Coordinator for Youth Ministry,, and Peter Rothermel our Coordinator for Faith Formation, are stepping down from their positions.

“I am grateful for the years of service in the areas of Student Ministry and Faith Formation that Dave Wright and Peter Rothermel, respectively, have offered the diocese,” said Bishop Edgar. “Both are good and godly men who have advanced those ministry areas across the diocese during their tenures. I, together with the whole diocese, am grateful for their work.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Adult Education, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Youth Ministry

The Latest Edition of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina Enewsletter

Walking Together With Those who Are Leaving their Property

Give to the Jerusalem Fund

In the new season that lies before us, working together as the Body of Christ calls for a new task: providing assistance in replanting the eight congregations required to leave their historic properties….

To that end we would like to raise $1,000,000 to be used exclusively for this initial work. To date, $250,000 has already been committed. We plan to raise the balance (and hopefully more) through generous individual donations from parishioners, through grant and foundation applications, through tithing from planned parish capital campaigns and through a planned Diocesan Ingathering scheduled for early in 2023.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Evangelism and Church Growth, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Stewardship

(ACNA) Husch Blackwell released its redacted report on the handling of abuse allegations in the Diocese of the Upper Midwest

Read the report here.

As we’ve stated before, receipt of this report is only one step toward resolution in this matter. Read more on the process here: https://anglicanchurch.net/an-update-on-the-matters-in-the-diocese-of-the-upper-midwest/

Posted in Ethics / Moral Theology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality

(Church Times) Pros and pitfalls of Vision and Strategy discussed in C of E webinar

The Church of England, beset by fears of scarcity and chasing a vision of “something bigger and better”, should look to the experience of the Church in Iran, which has survived being stripped of everything that it possessed, the Bishop of Chelmsford, Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani, told a Church House webinar this week.

Finances and buildings were “both a huge gift to us but also a great curse; they are like nooses around our necks”, she said. “And I think if something were to happen, and they were all to be swept away, we would find at that point new life coming.”

Her comments were made during the first in a series of webinars exploring the Church’s Vision and Strategy for the 2020s: “Has strategy eaten theology for breakfast?” Introducing it, Dr Nick Shepherd, a senior vision and strategy consultant at Church House, acknowledged the existence of concerns about the salience of strategic terminology and planning (Comment, 1 July 2022).

Dr Francis-Dehqani offered episcopal solidarity with such concerns in June (News, 8 July 2022), when, in an address to her diocesan synod, she warned against “putting too much emphasis on our human powers — that if only we try hard enough and pull together well enough and all follow the same programme, then we can solve the problems and challenges and ensure the future survival of the Church, either much as it has been in the past, or preferably producing a shinier, bigger, better version.”

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, England / UK, Evangelism and Church Growth, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Stewardship

A Lancelot Andrewes sermon for his Feast Day–‘One, that should save His people from their sins; save not their bodies for a time, but their souls for ever’

There is born a Saviour, is the first. The Angel addeth farther, Saviour Which is Christ. For, many saviours had been born, many had God sent them that at divers times had set them free from divers dangers of their enemies; Moses, from the Egyptians; Joshua, from the Canaanites; Gideon, from the Midianites; Jephtha, from the Ammonites; Sampson, from the Philistines. And indeed, the whole story of the Bible is nothing else but a calendar of saviours that God from time to time still stirred them up.

But these all were but petty saviours, there was One yet behind that was worth them all. One, that should save His people from their sins; save not their bodies for a time, but their souls for ever, which none of those saviours could do. One therefore must spoken of, wished for, and waited for, a Saviour Which was Christ. When He came they looked for great matters, as said the woman at the wells side, for He was the most famous and greatest Saviour of all. And this is He, a Saviour Which is Christ. He, of Whom all the promises made mention, and He the performance of them all; of Whom all the types under the Law were shadows, and He the substance of them all; of Whom all the prophecies ran, and He the fulfilling of them all; He, of Whom all those inferior…saviours were the figures and forerunners, and He the acomplishment of all in them was wanting. This is He; Jacob’s Shiloh, Isaiah’s Immanuel, Jeremiah’s Branch, Daniel’s Messias, Zachary’s oriens ab alto, Aggei’s desideratus cunctis gentibus, the desire of all the nations then, and now the joy of all nations, a Saviour Which is Christ.

And what is meant by this term Christ? A Saviour anointed; or, as in another place it is said more agreeable to our phrase of speaking, a Saviour sealed a Saviour under God’s Great Seal. That is, not as those other were, saviours raised up of a sudden upon some occasion, to serve the turn for the present, and never heard of till they came; but a Saviour in God’s fore-counsel resolved on, and given forth from the beginning; promised and foretold, and now signed and sent with absolute commission and fullness of power to be the perfect and complete Saviour of all.

And to be it, ex officio; His office, His very profession, to be one, that all may have right to repair unto Him, and find it at His hands. Not as Saviour incidentally, as it fell out; but one, ex professo, anointed to that end, and by virtue of His anointing appointed, set forth, and sent into the world to exercise this function of a Saviour; not for a time, but for ever; not to the Jews, as did the rest, but even to all the ends of the earth. So runs His bill, Venite ad Me omnes, come all; and, qui ad Me venerit non ejiciam foras, of them that come to Me, I will cast none out.Servator omnium hominum, the Saviour of all men, and as the Samaritans said of Him, Servator mundi, the Saviour of the world, of Samaritans, Jews, Gentiles; of kings, of shepherds, and all.

And there is yet more particularity in this word Christ: three offices did God from the beginning erect to save His people by, and that, by three acts the very heathen took notice of them1. Purgare, 2. Illuminare, 3. Perficere. 1. Priests, to purge or expiate; 2. Prophets, to illuminate or direct them; 3. Kings, to set all right, and to keep all right in that perfection which this world admitteth. And all these three had their several anointings. Aaron the Priest, Elisha the Prophet, Saul the King. In the Saviour Which is Christ, His will was all should meet, that nothing in Him might want to the perfecting of this work. That He might be a [76/77] perfect Saviour of all, He was all. A Priest after the order of Melchizedek; a Prophet to be heard when Moses should show his peace; a King to save His people, Whose name should be Jehova Justitia nostra. David’s Priest, Moses’ Prophet, Jeremy’s King.

Read it all.

Posted in Church History, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics

Prayers for the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina This Day

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

(Guardian) Divine comedy: the standup double act who turned to the priesthood

Josh arrived at Oxford in 2012 to study history, Jack in 2013 for English. Once there, Jack devoted himself to comedy. The first time Josh saw him on stage, he couldn’t get over Jack’s brilliance. After the show, he went over and said: “You should do a sequel of that, but with me in it, too.” Jack was quick and witty. But he was also more honest than other people Josh had met at university. No one else talked about how punishing it was. Likewise, Jack admired how straightforwardly, unapologetically himself Josh seemed. In each other they both discovered qualities they could not see were also in themselves: someone grounded and earnest, who reminded them of home.

Jack is taller, more angular than Josh. The first time Josh saw a Rembrandt self-portrait, he thought: at last, people who look like me getting some representation in art. He has soft features, a stooped posture and droopy eyes that suggest a melancholic disposition. This impression falls away as soon as he speaks. When together, Josh is the more animated of the pair. At any hint of a joke from Jack (and when I interviewed them as a pair, there were many of these – I, the waiter, any passers-by becoming audience while they tried out accents and characters), he throws his head back and slaps his knees appreciatively. Jack is more sensitive and self-critical. He sometimes disappears into himself without warning. We spoke every few months between 2021 and 2022. The deepening of his commitment to Christianity during this period meant that on each occasion we talked, the version of himself from our last meeting had already become an object of some disdain.

There are two distinct routes to faith among those who don’t grow up Christian. The first is person-led. One priest I spoke to followed a girl he fancied into a church. He walked in an atheist and came out a believer. The process isn’t always so quick, of course. One devout Christian, named Chris, told me that it had started on his gap year when he met a Pentecostal Christian in Huddersfield. Every day the two spoke about faith. At the end of the year, Chris went to visit his new friend’s church. There the friend spoke to him through the Holy Spirit. In that heightened state, he told Chris truths about himself no one else knew. After that, Chris could think of no further reason not to become a Christian.

Others arrive at church after trauma.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Humor / Trivia, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Theatre/Drama/Plays

(BBC Sounds) A Discussion looking back on the Queen’s funeral especially focusing on the faith issues involved

Herewith the BBC blurb about the show:

Exploring the faith behind the pomp and pageantry of the Queen’s funeral.

Millions will have watched the historic funeral service from Westminster Abbey and the Committal at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle as Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was laid to rest. For some, the services will be full of meaning and resonance. Others will be less familiar with the Christian rituals that have evolved over centuries.

Ernie Rea is joined by writer and journalist Catherine Pepinster, Professor Douglas Davies, Rev Dr Giles Fraser and Andrew Carwood MBE (Director of Music, St Paul’s Cathedral) to discuss and illuminate the meaning, symbolism and significance of the Queen’s state funeral.

Listen to it all (28 minutes).

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Death / Burial / Funerals, England / UK, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Ministry of the Ordained, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture

The New Dean of Llandaff Cathedral, Richard Peers, is announced

Canon Richard has had a long connection with the Church in Wales, leading retreats, preaching, and teaching across Wales. Richard has undertaken education consultancy in Church in Wales’ schools and assists as an adviser in change management to clergy. He is an Honorary Canon of St Asaph Cathedral.

“I am delighted to have been invited by Bishop June to be the next Dean of Llandaff,” says Canon Richard Peers. “The Church in Wales and Llandaff Cathedral have had an important place in my heart for many years. I look forward to praying, working, and living in Llandaff as part of the strong team in the Cathedral.

“This is an exciting time for the Church in Wales and for Llandaff Diocese and Cathedral. The Cathedral is a place where faith matters and I will be glad to lead the Cathedral as it further develops the diocesan vision to tell a joyful story, grow the kingdom of God, and build the capacity for good of churches across the Diocese.”

Read it all.

Posted in Church of Wales, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

(Bloomberg) Atlanta Hospital Closes in the Midst of Poverty and Politics

The Atlanta Medical Center sits on a vast stretch of urban land, just one mile south of Ponce de Leon Avenue — the street that segregationists over a century ago designated as the dividing line between Black and White Atlanta.

That distinction was palpable on Thursday, when a group of Georgia religious leaders held a press conference outside the hospital, calling on Governor Brian Kemp to meet with them, and find a way to stop the planned closure of the 120-year-old medical center, along with others like it in the state.

“Let’s be honest, this is about devaluing Black and Brown and poor people,” said Reverend Shanan Jones, president of Concerned Black Clergy of Atlanta. “Their lives are expendable. Their lives don’t matter.”

Read it all (registration or subscription).

Posted in Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Ministry of the Ordained, Pastoral Theology, Poverty, Race/Race Relations, Religion & Culture, Urban/City Life and Issues

(Local Paper) South Carolina Anglican Diocese’s first Black female priest reflects on symbolism of moment

The Rev. Henrietta Rivers can name the handful of male pastors who helped shape her approach to ministry. But perhaps the most influential person to impact her pastoral career was a woman — N.C. Williams, an instructor at the predominantly Black and now closed Charles A. Brown High School.

Rivers recalls how Williams would tell the freshmen students that their worth didn’t come from their material possessions. She also taught the importance of being proud of one’s African American heritage.

“She allowed us to see our human value,” said Rivers, 55, who now preaches a similar message to middle school students in her role as chaplain at Porter-Gaud School.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell’s Sermon on the Death of Queen Elizabeth

And where did this come from? This way of being a monarch that was more about service than rule?

At her Coronation, as I’ve already heard said several times, in perhaps one of the most poignant moments of the service, she steadfastly walked past the throne upon which she would sit and knelt at the altar, giving her allegiance to God before anyone else gave their allegiance to her.

Echoing those comforting words of scripture from the Book of Lamentation, which is itself a book written out of the heart of the profoundest grief and tragedy, the Queen said this in one of her Christmas broadcasts –

“Each day is a new beginning… I know that the only way to live my life is to try to do what is right, to take the long view, to give of my best in all that the day brings, and to put my trust in God.”

And let’s not forget that today is September the 11th, a day etched into the corporate memory of the world as we remember another day of horror and sadness when so many died.

And this is what we do. As we remember, as we grieve and mourn in our families, across our world, and in the household of our nation we tell our stories. And how do we make sense of the end of life and of death? How do we live our lives well in the time that is remaining to us? Well, we can do no better than follow the example of Her Late Majesty the Queen, who each day put her trust in God. There’s nothing sensational or mystical about this. The Christian life is a life of simple discipline where each day we choose to live a certain way. Each day we choose to love our neighbour as ourselves. Each day we choose to love God.

Read it all.

Posted in Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture

Archbishop Justin Welby preaches at Canterbury Cathedral on the Death of Queen Elizabeth

That same year, it was the year of the European City of Culture for Liverpool, Her Late Majesty came to Liverpool and there was a formal lunch. I was at a table not far away from her. Also at the table with her was a Rwandan woman who had escaped the genocide but lost almost her entire family and seen most terrible horrors. At the end of lunch, the Queen invited her to come and sit next to her, and talked to her for at least 20 minutes, while some of her staff hovered, twitching. And when I spoke to her later, she said, ‘there was healing’.

Both Her late Majesty and His Majesty treat others as special because for both their faith is built on the same rock. The rock of Christ. It is a rock on which we too can stand. There is room on that rock for every human being, however important or unimportant. Our sure hope comes from the fact the monarchy is not in a person, it is in God’s loving grace that he poured upon the Queen and pours upon the King – ‘Thy choicest gifts in store, on him be pleased to pour’.

This is the faith that enabled Her Late Majesty to be such a blessing to us, and to people around the world, an example of wisdom and reconciliation. Some of us will remember seeing on television her visit to Ireland in 2011 when, at the formal state dinner, she opened her speech in the Irish language, and Mary MacAleese, the then President of Ireland, looked at her neighbour at the table and went ’wow’. Or when Her Majesty in 2012, chose quite literally to extend the hand of friendship to Martin McGuinness, despite their differences and painful history – including the very personal history for the Queen of the death of her beloved uncle Lord Mountbatten as a result of an IRA attack in 1979. She was able to offer her hand because she stood on the rock of Christ.

She knew that every person is part of the flock, she saw every one of her subjects and every person she met as part of God’s treasured people. She knew that even in the shadow of the valley of death the Good Shepherd was with here. She knew that throughout this country’s darkest days and greatest victories, the hand of the Lord seeks us out and guides us. His Majesty knows the same. We have continuity, we have stability through grace.

Her life made sense in the light of Jesus Christ, her Lord and Saviour. So does that of His Majesty.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Christology, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics

Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon: What does in Mean that Christians are Forgiven and Free (Romans 8:1-2)?

Listen to it all and there re other options here.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * By Kendall, * South Carolina, Christology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Sermons & Teachings, Soteriology, Theology: Scripture

The Sermon by the Bishop of London at Today’s Service of Prayer and Reflection, St Paul’s Cathedral, London

How we learn to live with the death of a loved one differs for each of us, but we must all find a way to grieve. As the theologian Tom Wright said, ‘Not to grieve, not to lament, is to slam the door on the same place in the innermost heart from which love itself comes’. We may not know the power of that love until the moment of loss, for as the writer Khalil Gibran wisely observed: ‘Love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation’.

When we are bereaved, we need to make opportunities, individually and together, to face and absorb the depth of our loss. Yet we are also invited into the healing love of God which never falters, and which is the deepest and widest perspective of our lives. It is a perspective beautifully expressed by the writer of Deuteronomy who tells us that ‘underneath are the everlasting arms’. Even in the midst of our grief we are enfolded in that all-encompassing love.

As a Christian I believe that death is not the end. That gives me hope even in the worst of times. To speak of hope is not to deny the fear, the loss and the anguish which death brings. Jesus himself stood with Martha and Mary at the tomb of his beloved friend, Lazarus, and wept, wholly undone by his grief. But in that cameo we have the assurance of God’s presence in the world’s pain and a model for our response to human suffering: God is there for us and we are called to be there for others. The words of the prophet Isaiah assure us that the Spirit of the Lord is at work and will bind up the broken-hearted, comfort those who mourn – and give them a garland instead of ashes, and the oil of gladness instead of mourning.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England, CoE Bishops, Death / Burial / Funerals, England / UK, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture, Uncategorized

(ACNA) An Update On The Matters In The Diocese Of The Upper Midwest

Husch Blackwell has informed the Province that it is nearing the end of its investigation into the handling of sexual abuse allegations in the Diocese of the Upper Midwest and their report is expected to be released within the month.

On July 8, 2021 the Diocese of the Upper Midwest requested the Province take on oversight of its investigation. Husch Blackwell was hired by the Anglican Church in North America after selection by a unanimous vote of the Provincial Response Team (PRT) and majority vote of the survivors who participated in the firm selection process.

Our contract with Husch Blackwell stipulates the production of a “full public report that redacts names and identifying details to protect survivors and witnesses as appropriate.”  Husch Blackwell will deliver the report, and it will be relayed by the Anglican Church in North America through public communication channels upon reception.

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Posted in Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Ethics / Moral Theology, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology

Kendall Harmon’s Sunday Sermon–How can We let the Holy Spirit lead and guide us in our lives (Acts 16:6-10)?


The sermon starts about 23:50 in.

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Posted in * By Kendall, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics, Sermons & Teachings, Theology: Scripture

Prayers for the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina This Day

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

(CT) Younger Pastors More Likely to Say They Struggle With Mental Illness

Lifeway Research study explores US Protestant pastors’ experiences with mental illness and how well their churches are equipped to respond to those who need help.

A majority of pastors (54%) say in the churches where they have served on staff, they have known at least one church member who has been diagnosed with a severe mental illness such as clinical depression, bipolar, or schizophrenia.

Most of those pastors had experience with a small number of members: 18 percent say one or two and another 18 percent say three to five. Fewer pastors say they’ve known 6-10 (8%), 11-20 (5%) or more than 20 (6%). Around a third (34%) say none of their church members have been diagnosed with a severe mental illness, while 12 percent don’t know.

“There is a healthy generational shift occurring as younger and middle-aged pastors are much more likely to have encountered people in church with severe mental illness than the oldest pastors,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research.

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Posted in Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Psychology