As the Council of Forward in Faith, North America we have discussed with the six FiF NA bishops who have just returned from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, where they met in Conclave, the implications of the Message from the College of Bishops. They have been very clear that the agreement of the College is that individual statements, and, in particular, attributing to individual bishops, their comments cannot occur. Moreover, any comments that would appear to suggest some form of “victory” would be highly inappropriate. The College understands that the January meeting in Melbourne Florida will be the next opportunity for them to meet and prayerfully proceed. We acknowledge that the College of Bishops met, often in Silence, for the purpose of receiving the excellent Report of the Task Force on Holy Orders. We give thanks that one of our FiF NA bishops served on the Task Force, and that one of our bishops served on the four-man team which produced the Statement. We also acknowledge that the Statement was unanimously endorsed, but that this endorsement does not imply that Traditionalist Bishops have reached any conclusion other than the one that has been articulated for 2000 years. By now we are certain that everyone has read both the Constitution and Canons of the Anglican Church in North America and also the Task Force Report, and that with these in mind, have evaluated the Statement from the College of Bishops. This Conclave was designed and reported to be the very first time that serious theological conversation has occurred regarding the nature of Holy Orders as an innovation in the Episcopal Church in 1976. Since the formation of ACNA, we have endeavored to study and discuss the Three-Fold Ministry as a Received reality and mystery, and then to study and discuss the reality of who may be ordained, based on their sex, their marital status, and their moral character among other considerations. We must add that Forward in Faith, North America is comprised of numerous Anglican jurisdictions, with the ACNA representing the largest percentage of membership. We note that, with the exception of the Episcopal Church, none of our other jurisdictions ordain women. Forward in Faith is comprised of numerous jurisdictions, all of whom have signed our Declaration which maintains all elements of the Historic Faith.
Category : Anglican Church in North America (ACNA)
In an act of mutual submission at the foundation of the Anglican Church in North America, it was agreed that each Diocese and Jurisdiction has the freedom, responsibility, and authority to study Holy Scripture and the Apostolic Tradition of the Church, and to seek the mind of Christ in determining its own convictions and practices concerning the ordination of women to the diaconate and the priesthood. It was also unanimously agreed that women will not be consecrated as bishops in the Anglican Church in North America. These positions are established within our Constitution and Canons and, because we are a conciliar Church, would require the action of both Provincial Council and Provincial Assembly to be changed.
Having gratefully received and thoroughly considered the five-year study by the Theological Task Force on Holy Orders, we acknowledge that there are differing principles of ecclesiology and hermeneutics that are acceptable within Anglicanism that may lead to divergent conclusions regarding women’s ordination to the priesthood. However, we also acknowledge that this practice is a recent innovation to Apostolic Tradition and Catholic Order. We agree that there is insufficient scriptural warrant to accept women’s ordination to the priesthood as standard practice throughout the Province. However, we continue to acknowledge that individual dioceses have constitutional authority to ordain women to the priesthood.
The Secretary General, Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon, has stressed that the Anglican Church of North America is not a province of the Anglican Communion. Speaking to ACNS as he delivered his report to the Standing Committee, Archbishop Josiah said he wanted to correct any suggestion that ACNA was the 39th province of the Communion rather than Sudan, which was inaugurated in July.
“It is simply not true to say that ACNA is part of the Anglican Communion,” he said. “To be part of the Communion a province needs to be in communion with the See of Canterbury and to be a member of the Instruments of the Communion. ACNA is not in communion with the See of Canterbury – and has not sought membership of the Instruments.
“There is a long-standing process by which a province is adopted as a province of the Communion. It was a great joy for me to see Sudan go through this process and it was a privilege to be in Khartoum in July to see it become the 39th member of the Communion. ACNA has not gone through this process.
“ACNA is a church in ecumenical relationship with many of our provinces,” he went on. “But that is also true of many churches, including the Methodist, Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches.”
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As many of you may have heard, the College of Bishops is gathering this week (September 5-7) in conclave (a private assembly of the bishops) to discuss the report we have received from the Task Force on Holy Orders earlier this year, specifically women’s orders. This is the beginning of our formal discussion as bishops, and I sincerely doubt it will be the end of our prayerful deliberation on this important issue. We are seeking to hear God’s will for us as Biblically orthodox, and faithful North American Anglicans, who are part of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
There are two things which I want to share with you, as members of the Anglican Church in North America.
The Primate of the Anglican Church of Australia has asked the church’s Appellate Tribunal to offer a ruling as to whether its bishops may participate in the consecration of bishops who are not members of the Anglican Communion.
On 16 August 2017, the Most Rev. Philip Freier, Archbishop of Melbourne, wrote to the registrar of the tribunal stating he had received a request from the Bishop of Bendigo, the Rt. Rev. Andrew Curnow, supported by four other bishops that raised objections to the consecration of the Rt. Rev. Andrew Lines of the Anglican Church in North America by the Archbishop of Sydney and Bishops of Tasmania and Northwest Australia.
The proceedings, made public in a letter to the Australian bishops on 28 August 2017, comes a week before the start of the church’s General Synod at Maroochydore, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, from 3-9 Sept 2017 and will likely overshadow its proceedings.
The Appellate Tribunal of the Anglican Church of Australia is not a disciplinary tribunal, but a body charged with providing legal opinions on ecclesiastical questions.
The horrific events today in Charlottesville, VA, call us to pray and intercede for our communities that are in deep conflict. Psalm 145 reminds us of the hope we have as we pray: “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them.” Please join in praying for the community of Charlottesville and for all communities in our nation that face conflict, that the Lord may deliver us from bigotry and violence, and bring healing and salvation to all people in our nation.
— Mid-Atlantic Diocese (@AnglicanDOMA) August 12, 2017
— Kendall Harmon (@KendallHarmon6) August 4, 2017
Archbishop calls for a Day of Prayer and Fasting on August 4th for the Diocese of South Carolina.
Dear Brothers and Sisters in the Gospel:
Many of you have heard of the mixed decision by the South Carolina Supreme Court, ruling that most of the parishes in the Diocese of South Carolina may have to turn over their properties to the Episcopal Church. The legal process is still unfolding and I am asking you to join me in a day of prayer and fasting for the Diocese on this Friday, August 4. Below is a note I just sent to the bishops of the Anglican Church in North America:
Dear Brother Bishops,
I am calling for a Day of Prayer and Fasting for this Friday, August 4th, for the Diocese of South Carolina. Let us fast and intercede on behalf of:
* Bishop Mark Lawrence
* The Standing Committee
* The Clergy (and rectors)
* The vestries and congregations affected by this ruling
* The Legal team
Let us ask God for His blessing on all of them…
– For Wisdom from God (James 1:5)
– For Godly Counsel (Proverbs 15:22)
– For true Justice (Amos 5:24)
– For trust in the Lord (Proverbs 3:5,6)
– For God’s leadership in their next steps (Ps.32:8)
– For the right doors to be opened (Mt.7:7,8)
– For the public witness of the Gospel and the Glory of God (1 Cor.10:31; Col.3:17)
– For God’s peace in the storm (Phil.4:6,7)
Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives, and the one who seeks, finds, and to the one who knocks, it will be opened. (Jesus in Mt.7:7,8)
In Christ’s Love,
(The Most Rev.) Foley Beach is archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America
Father Lee Nelson, pastor of Christ Church Waco, said his growing church is looking forward to “putting down some roots” at the new location after meeting for the past eight years at the Junior League House, the Clifton House, the Dr Pepper Museum, the chapel at First Baptist Church and other locations.
Nelson said the church currently has more than 200 members, adding that the congregation has grown 70 percent annually for the last three years.
Christ Church likely will spend more than $200,000 on the former First Lutheran building before the congregation moves in, including asbestos abatement, major heating and air-conditioning repairs, new flooring, ceilings and light fixtures and painting, Nelson said.
He said the church is fortunate that included in the deal were the sanctuary’s beautiful stained-glass windows, which Bain said have been appraised at $500,000.
Archbishop Okoh went on to state, “Keep your head in all situations. Do the work of an evangelist. People of God, it is never true to water down the gospel message, in fact, I am convinced that the opposite is true when we concentrate on delivering the gospel of Jesus Christ, people will be cut to the heart and repent. Christianity without repentance is not true Christianity. We must refute erroneous doctrines, contend for the faith of the Church. We are to place teaching above ceremonies which is gaining the ascendency.”
One lay delegate shared with me that a take away for her from this Assembly was the powerful worship services and worship times each evening. Memorable for her were the words of Nigerian Archbishop, Ben Kwashi, “God didn’t save you to sit in a pew.” Many were moved by the absolutely compelling address given by Baroness Caroline Cox. Her presentation titled Persecuted Heroes and Heroines in The World with her stunning photographs of men, women and children mainly in Africa and Asia moved many to tears. In describing these brave people Baroness Cox ended with a quote from Archbishop Ben Kwashi of the Diocese of Jos in Nigeria, about the persecuted church, “If you have a faith worth living for, it is a faith worth dying for. Don’t YOU compromise the faith that WE are living and dying for”
Titus Church Planting Institute administrator Jenni Bartling was thrilled with the amount of attention still focused on the ministry of church planting in our province. “Keynote speakers like Ed Stetzer, Dave Ferguson, and an entire Always Forward teaching track are clear indicators its priority has not waned,” she noted.
Faith: Our ACNA family is joined under one faith and the proclamation of the Good News of Jesus Christ. It was such a joy to know that I was among those who believed in the apostolic faith and were also excited about sharing this faith with those who do not yet believe. The witnesses and testimonies that I heard touched my heart and reinvigorated by faith. One of the more memorable faith stories came from Baroness Caroline Cox (CEO of Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust). She told us of the forced relocation of the Karen people of Myanmar (Burma) and a conversation she had with a Karen pastor named Simon. He stated the following:
They call us a displaced people, but thank God we are not misplaced. They say we they see no hope for our future, but thank God our future is as bright as the promises of God. They say the life of our people is a misery, but praise God our life is a mystery. For what they say is what they see and what they see is temporal; but ours is the eternal, and all because we put ourselves in the hands of the God we trust.
This testimony is only one of many that are part of our new family’s history. I pray that we will be encouraged by this and seek to have such faith as we serve and worship our Lord on the Barrier Islands and beyond.
We were blessed by the worship at Assembly 2017, which culminated at the final Holy Communion at Wheaton’s Edman Chapel on Friday morning, June 30. The music, the liturgy, and the preaching by Archbishop Okoh of Nigeria, all came together in an awe-inspiring service. This included the historic consecration of the first GAFCON missionary bishop since Bishops Atwood, Guernsey, and myself, who were consecrated in August 2007 by the world-wide communion for the launch of the ACNA. Bishop Andrew Lines was consecrated as missionary bishop to Scotland, and the wives of the ACNA bishops laid hands on and prayed for Mandy Lines, his wife. The moment’s intensity, love, and sense of support were so strong that there was hardly a dry eye in the sanctuary.
During Assembly we also hosted the Most Rev Jackson Ole Sapit, Archbishop of Kenya, in Wheaton, after which we hosted him here in Massachusetts, as he presided over our Kenyan Archdeaconry’s Kenyan festival at Grace Anglican Church of Bridgewater. At this event, the Kenyan Archdeaconry, led by Archdeacon Peter Gachathi, witnessed the gathering of many Kenyan Clergy currently not in the ADNE. We confirmed twelve, welcomed twelve ladies into the Mothers Union of the ACNA, and we had a first: the establishment of the North American Anglican Men’s Association, inducting twelve men into this new organization. After the service and luncheon, Archbishop Sapit and I met with Kenyan and ADNE clergy, the outcome of which was planning for a week-long visit from him in 2018 to establish the structures and membership of a much larger Kenyan Archdeaconry here in the ADNE.
(Church Times) Beware C of E free-for-all, new Anglican Missionary bishop recently consecrated at the ACNA Assembly to Europe, Andy Lines, warns
After the announcement of Bishop Lines’s preferment, the Archbishop of Canterbury spoke against “cross-border interventions and ordinations”. Canon Lines argued that ACNA was not a member of the Anglican Communion “and therefore it cannot by definition be crossing borders. . . Bishops have always sought to meet needs where other bishops have been heterodox, and that overrides our structures: the gospel need.”
It was the Scottish Episcopal Church that had broken communion, he argued. While he did not foresee a change in doctrine in the C of E soon, he was concerned about changes in practice: “What is being allowed is kind of a free-for-all.”
A message from two C of E bishops — the Bishop of Blackburn, the Rt Revd Julian Henderson, and the Suffragan Bishop of Birkenhead, the Rt Revd Keith Sinclair — was read aloud at the consecration: “We pray for you today, especially for Canon Andy Lines, consecrated as a Bishop in the Church of God. It has been good to meet and pray with Andy over recent years and to know his heart for the gospel and the witness of the Church. Please pray for us in the Church of England for faithfulness and fruitfulness in these days.”