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Guest Rosencruetz

The Episcopal Church was organized shortly after the American Revolution when it was forced to separate from the Church of England, as Church of England clergy were required to swear allegiance to the British monarch.


The Anglican clergy of Connecticut elected Samuel Seabury as their bishop in 1783, he sought the Archbishop of Canterbury to consecrate him, Archbishop Moore refused. The Oath of Supremacy prevented Seabury's consecration in England, so he went to Scotland; the non-juring Scottish bishops there consecrated him in Aberdeen on November 14, 1784, making him, in the words of scholar Arthur Carl Piepkorn, "the first Anglican bishop appointed to minister outside the British Isles."


In return, the Scottish bishops requested that the Episcopal Church use the longer Scottish prayer of consecration during the Eucharist, instead of the English prayer. Seabury promised that he would endeavor to make it so. To the present day the American liturgy adheres to the main features of this Rite in one of its Holy Eucharist Liturgies. The anniversary of his consecration is now a lesser feast day on the calendars of both the Episcopal Church in the United States of America and the Anglican Church of Canada.


The fact of Seabury's consecration by the non-juring Scots caused alarm in the (Whig) British Government, who feared an entirely Jacobite church in the United States, and Parliament was persuaded to make provision for the ordination of foreign bishops. Seabury's tenacity in the matter had the effect of making a continued relationship between the American and English churches a possibility. The problem was revealed not to be one of liturgical restrictions (the oath) but of political plans.


In 1787, two priests – William White of Pennsylvania and Samuel Provoost of New York – were consecrated as bishops by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Archbishop of York, and the Bishop of Bath and Wells, the legal obstacles having been removed by the passage through Parliament of the Consecration of Bishops Abroad Act 1786. Thus there are two branches of Apostolic succession for the American bishops:


1. Through the non-juring bishops of Scotland that consecrated Samuel Seabury.

2. Through the English church that consecrated William White and Samuel Provoost.


In 1786, on the initiative of the archbishop, the legal difficulties in England were removed by the act for the consecration of bishops abroad; and, on being satisfied as to the orthodoxy of the church in America and the nature of certain liturgical changes in contemplation, the two English archbishops proceeded, on the 14th of February 1787, to consecrate William White and Samuel Prevoost to the sees of Pennsylvania and New York.


This act bound United States of America Episcopal community to the religious life of England.


Since the Church of England, whatever her attitude towards the traditional Catholic doctrines, never disputed the validity of Catholic orders whether Roman or Orthodox, nor the jurisdiction of Catholic bishops in foreign countries, the expansion of the Anglican Church has been in no sense conceived as a Protestant aggressive movement against Rome.

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Guest Kalamazoo

Episcopal Bishops are successors to the Apostles in the same way as Roman Catholic and Orthodox bishops are, yet our Church governance is marked by a democratic process that includes our bishops, priests, deacons, and lay people.


The reformed Church of England that maintains the doctrine and practice of the ancient Catholic (meaning universal) Church – from the early, undivided Church, but has repudiated Medieval doctrines (e.g. clergy celibacy and the selling of indulgences).


While the Bible is the Word of God, most Episcopalians do not interpret everything in the Bible as being literally true.


Episcopal/Anglican Christians are not held to beliefs that were not part of the early, undivided Church. At the same time, Anglicans actively engage our faith and seek the ways that God is working through the Church today. We look to the Apostles’ Creed as the creed of Baptism and the Nicene Creed as the sufficient statement of Christian faith. One aspect of Christian faith that is particularly important to Anglicans is the Incarnation. The Incarnation is the Christian belief that the God in whom we believe has been revealed uniquely in the person and life of Jesus Christ. The Incarnation roots us deeply in relationship with God and with others and places the emphasis on community.

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Guest Widow's Son





Master, Wardens, and







Of Free and Accepted Masons,


In the City of New-York,


The following SERMON,


Preached and published at their Desire,


Is most respectfully inscribed,


By their much obliged,


And very humble Servant,




New-York, July 4th, 1777.


PSALM cxxxviii. I.


Behold, how good and joyful a thing it is Brethren, to dwell together in Unity!





IT is with very particular pleasure that I embrace the opportunity, which your kind invitation has given me, of addressing myself to you at this Time. Both as a minister of that gospel which proclaimeth peace and good will to mankind, and as one of the common brotherhood of men, I feel myself deeply interested in the honor, prosperity and happiness of every society, whose object is the peace, order and welfare of the human species; and whose aim is the establishment and cultivation of unity, brotherly love and benevolence among its several branches.


[6] IN whatever light we view the nature and condition of man in this world, we must conclude that he was born for society. The helplessness of his infantine state, the many wants and necessities of his mature age, and the numberless evils attendant on his declining years all proclaim, That it is not good for man to be alone. They all declare that in a solitary unconnected state, He could not subsist, or could not subsist with safety and satisfaction to himself.


IF we view his mind; if we attend to the tender feelings of which it is capable--of which, indeed, without violence, and often repeated efforts, it cannot be divested:--To the sympathetic anguish which it feels for the distresses of others:--To the thrillings of joy and gladness with which it is delighted at the prospect of human happiness--To the soft emotions, the extacy of pleasure which arise from the reciprocal offices of mutual friendship and love--we must conclude, that God made man for society;--That [6/7] he intended every individual of the human species for the help and comfort of every other.


ACCORDINGLY we find that in that book, which contains the history of those revelations which God hath been pleased to make to mankind, this point is taken for granted, That man is made for society. It considers this to be the dictate of nature, not easily to be misunderstood or suppressed. Instead of loosing time to establish a point, which was already established by the very nature of man, it gives laws for the regulation and restraint of those appetites and passions which would interfere with our duty in this respect; it explains to us the nature of that benevolence and mutual love which it enjoins: It restrains us from all instances and all expressions of cruelty, malice, ill-will and revenge, by the most positive laws, enforced by the severest threatnings: It excites us to the practice of kindness, benevolence and charity, by the promise of the noblest rewards--the [7/8] heart-delighting pleasure of doing good--the approbation and blessing of our heavenly father in this world, and endless happiness with him in the next.


IT is true there are in man baneful and savage dispositions, as well as those that are gentle and benign. He would otherwise have needed no laws or directions to regulate his conduct in this particular: The laws of reason, which are the laws of his nature, and the laws of his God, concur in requiring him to check and curb his malevolent dispositions, and to cherish and indulge those that are of a benign and friendly tendency. That this is to consult the true happiness of man, needs no other proof, than to take an unprejudiced view of the different effects which the indulgence of these different dispositions produces in the world. Strike all the tender feelings, all gentleness and kindness, and meekness and benevolence, from the nature of man; give a full scope to the malevolent passions, the vindictive dispositions [8/9] of his nature, and see what would be the consequence. Would these only operate as far as his own preservation should require? Would they be always confined within the bounds of self-defence? I fear they would not. Fear did I say? I know they would not. The malevolence of wolves and tigers would fall far short of the malevolence of man. Every violence that you can conceive--rapine, and bloodshed, and murder, would ravage and desolate the earth. Every injury, real or supposed, would excite to revenge, and revenge would be unsatiated with any thing but the destruction of its object. No laws would be sufficient to restrain the impetuosity of their passions; no punishments of force enough to prevent the perpetration of evil: For that murder is now so seldom committed in the world, is probably more owing to the tender feelings of the human heart, than to any laws, human or divine, or to any dread of punishment. Were these feelings at an end, we should soon see parents and children [9/10] seeking the destruction of each other: and brother aiming the fatal dagger at the heart of his brother.


THIS is not vain conjecture and idle speculation. The history of mankind and daily observation both confirm it, and leave us no Room to doubt, That the most mischievous of all animals is man divested of the benign and tender feelings of his nature. We in particular who are assembled here this day, know that no government can bind, no laws can hold, and no principles can restrain men who, having suppressed the humane tempers and emotions of the heart, have given themselves up to the influence of the selfish, malignant and vindictive passions, the indulgence of which is both a disgrace to our nature, and a curse to our species. How strong must be the force of these passions unrestrained by meekness and benevolence, when neither the distress of individuals, nor the ruin of provinces, nor the misery of half a continent, can reach the hearts, [10/11] or move the affections of men while under their influence!


TO be more particular is unnecessary. Your own feelings will more than supply all that I could say. I will therefore turn from this distressing prospect, with this one remark,--That when men once attempt to accomplish their ends by means not strictly just and honorable, they know not where they shall stop; they know not to what a height of wickedness the impetuosity of passion may drive them, nor into what a depth of misery their own licentious conduct may plunge them.--The unhappy man may possibly wonder at himself while he contemplates his own progress in villainy; he may stare and be astonished while he pleases himself with the mighty ruin which he hath wrought; But evil hath now become his good; to do mischief his delight. He hath overpowered and suppressed the tender feelings of his heart, and to return again to the dictates of humanity, to the practice of benevolence, [11/12] is I fear an impossibility.--The distant thoughts of cruelty shocked the tenderness of Hazael's heart. Is thy servant a dog, said he to the prophet, that he should do this great wickedness? But he had already so far given way to the tempting prospect of his own aggrandizement, as o have plotted the death of his royal master; and notwithstanding the kind and tender manner in which the prophet endeavoured to recall him to a sense of his duty, he persisted in, and accomplished his horrid purpose; and at length became so hardened in cruelty as to burn the fortresses of Israel with fire, slay their young men with the sword, dash their children, and rip up their women with child.


THE laws of civil society, the laws of God, the tender, sociable and humane feelings of the heart, all concur to restrain the inordinacy of passion, to bridle the lust of revenge; and all these united, and assisted by education, are scarcely sufficient to answer the purpose. What then must ensue when [12/13] these all are broken through or suppressed? The impetuosity of passion, like the impetuosity of mighty waters, will drive us headlong down its furious current; bearing away all the little remains of principle, overwhelming the feeble restraints of reason, and giving us neither time for reflection, nor any means nor opportunity of escaping.


IF on the contrary we consider man under the influence of the gentle, benign and humane propensities of his nature--unsoured by revenge, untainted by malice, uninflamed by anger; exerting only his ability to do good, and to make others happy; exercising himself in all the offices of humanity, benevolence and charity; promoting peace, unity and concord among the brotherhood of men, and binding them all together by the indissoluble bonds of affection and love--and how amiable! how angelic does he appear! There would be an immediate end of all strife, and contention on the earth; injustice, [13/14] and oppression, and cruelty, and rapine, and murder, and war, and rebellion, and tyranny, would cease; and we should even in this world have a foretaste of the joys and blessedness of heaven.


TO bring about this happy state by restraining the malevolent tempers of our nature, and by cherishing those of a kind and benevolent tendency, is the proper business of reason, the grand aim of religion, especially of that religion which the son of God hath communicated to the world. A religion--which, the more we examine it, the more we shall be convinced, is exactly squared to the nature and condition of man, and perfectly leveled to his capacity;--which lays the surest foundation for his happiness, tending to raise his powers and faculties to their highest perfection, to cement together the whole brotherhood of men, and build them up an edifice of affection and love, supported by he two grand [14/15] pillars of virtue and holiness, the light and strength of the world.


THE royal psalmist, the author of the text, had from his own experience a perfect knowledge of the fatal tendency of indulging the bitterness of malice and revenge: He had been persecuted by Saul with the most implacable fury: He had seen and felt the evil effects of discord and contention: He had long viewed, and lamented over his country torn to pieces with party and faction, and languishing under all the horrors and distresses of civil war; and he had lived to see peace, and order, and good government restored, and the happy effects of unity, love, and mutual benevolence, flourishing, and diffusing the serenest joy and happiness among his people. His foreign enemies were subdued or humbled, his own people were united and happy. Rebellion indeed had once reared its horrid front, and displayed its bloody banners under the conduct of his own son; but publish justice had routed, had crushed [15/16] had punished the hedious monster, and peace, order and happiness were restored.--Viewing the happy effects of peace and unity, and filled with the pleasing prospect of their continuance and increase, his heart became too much affected to keep silence; its tender emotions burst forth in the exclamation of the text,--Behold, how good and joyful a thing it is brethren, to dwell together in unity!--He compares the happy effects diffused among mankind by unity and brotherly love, to the odours of the richest perfumes, which at once refresh and delight the senses. It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down unto the beard; even unto Aaron's beard, and went down to the skirts of his cloathing.--Nothing can be conceived more agreeable, more reviving, than the fostering due of Heaven to the parched, thirsty earth, scorched by heat and drought.--To this also is unity and brotherly love compared, It is like as the dew of Hermon which fell upon the hill of Sion.


[17] ON this occasion it would be superfluous to insist particularly on the motives to the practice of the duty of unity and brotherly love. The honorable fraternity to which I have the pleasure of addressing myself, make it their professed principle to cultivate the humane and sociable propensities of the heart, and to diffuse the blessings of unity, concord and peace, thro' the world. And may God, the God of unity and concord, bless and prosper their endeavours! Permit me however to observe, That the dictates of reason, of humanity, and of our holy religion, all concur to give a sanction to your efforts, and to excite you to persist in the well-meant undertaking, of spreading the blessings of benevolence and mutual love over the whole earth. Your society is not confined to parties and sects; it admits not of the local distinctions of nations and countries: Mankind is the object of its attention, their happiness the end of its pursuit; and this end it aims to accomplish, by the most reasonable means, the culture of the [17/18] benign and friendly propensities of our nature; by promoting peace and unity, benevolence and affection among all the individuals of the human species.--This also is one grand design of the religion of the holy Jesus. His gospel proclaims peace and good will to mankind; and endeavours to promote their happiness by promoting unity, concord and benevolence among them. It confines not its attention to particular sects, and parties of men, to particular nations, countries, states or kingdoms. It aims to connect the whole human race together by love and benevolence, and to make them all happy in this world by the mutual intercourse of good will and affection; and by cultivating the tender, benign and amiable propensities of the human heart, to fit and prepare them for perfect, never-ceasing happiness in the kingdom of God our creator.


WHO, I beseech you, would not wish to co-operate in this blessed work?--When we see and feel the [18/19] evil effects of animosity and discord, who would not wish for unity and peace? What heart can be so callous to the tender feelings of our nature, or so deaf to the soft and plaintive calls and sollicitations of humanity, as not to be willing to drive discord, animosity and ill-nature from the earth; and to lend his helping hand to plant unity, peace, love and affection in the world, and to diffuse their heavenly influence among all the nations of men?


WERE the precepts of our holy religion duly complied with; were they suffered to take deep root in our hearts, and to bring their proper fruits to perfection, we should soon see the happy effects produced by them, in the daily increase of human happiness: We should soon feel how good and joyful a thing it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!--Our hearts would be cheered by the heavenly influence of benevolence, even as our bodily senses are delighted by the fragrance of rich perfumes; and our souls refreshed by its cordial [19/20] effusions, as the parched earth is refreshed by the kindly dew of haven. All moroseness, and rancour, and malice, and envy, and contention would cease over the whole earth: Nation would no more rise against nation, nor kingdom against kingdom: but they would beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks, and the heavenly kingdom of our Redeemer would be established, in righteousness and holiness, in peace, unity, brotherly love and concord, among all the inhabitants of the earth.


MAY the God of peace hasten this happy period! grant that we may see it begun and increasing in stability and splendor! and make us all instruments in accomplishing the gracious designs of his love and goodness to the children of men! for the sake of his son our redeemer Jesus Christ: To whom, with the father and the holy spirit, the eternal, triune benevolent God of all nature, be ascribed adoration and worship, thanksgiving and praise, by all the creatures whom he hath made. Amen.

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Guest True Brit

The Anglican clergy of Connecticut elected Samuel Seabury as their bishop in 1783, he sought the Archbishop of Canterbury to consecrate him, Archbishop Moore refused. The Oath of Supremacy prevented Seabury's consecration in England, so he went to Scotland; the non-juring Scottish bishops there consecrated him in Aberdeen on November 14, 1784, making him, in the words of scholar Arthur Carl Piepkorn, "the first Anglican bishop appointed to minister outside the British Isles."


In return, the Scottish bishops requested that the Episcopal Church use the longer Scottish prayer of consecration during the Eucharist, instead of the English prayer. Seabury promised that he would endeavor to make it so. To the present day the American liturgy adheres to the main features of this Rite in one of its Holy Eucharist Liturgies. The anniversary of his consecration is now a lesser feast day on the calendars of both the Episcopal Church in the United States of America and the Anglican Church of Canada.


The fact of Seabury's consecration by the non-juring Scots caused alarm in the (Whig) British Government, who feared an entirely Jacobite church in the United States, and Parliament was persuaded to make provision for the ordination of foreign bishops. Seabury's tenacity in the matter had the effect of making a continued relationship between the American and English churches a possibility. The problem was revealed not to be one of liturgical restrictions (the oath) but of political plans.


Here is a little tidbit for you.


The Scottish Episcopalians Act 1711 (c.10) is an Act of the Great Britain Parliament which is still in force today.


The long title of the Act is:

" An Act to prevent the disturbing those of the Episcopal Communion in Scotland in the Exercise of their Religious Worship and in the Use of the Liturgy of the Church of England and for repealing the Act passed in the Parliament of Scotland intituled Act against irregular Baptisms and Marriages.




The Primus (presiding bishop of the Scottish Episcopal Church) John Skinner was the one who consecrated Samuel Seabury.


For all you British Catholics, Franz Bonaventura Adalbert Maria Herzog von Bayern, the True Prince of England and Scotland is live and well.

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Guest Widow's Son

James II & VII (14 October 1633 – 16 September 1701 was King of England and King of Ireland as James II and King of Scotland as James VII, from 6 February 1685. He was the last Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland. Increasingly Britain's political and religious leaders opposed him as too pro-French, too pro-Catholic, and too much of an absolute monarch.


William Henry of Orange was born in The Hague in the Dutch Republic on 14 November 1650. He was the only child of stadtholder William II, Prince of Orange, and Mary, Princess Royal. Mary was the eldest daughter of King Charles I of England, Scotland and Ireland, and sister of King Charles II and King James II & VII.


When James II & VII produced a Catholic heir, the tension exploded and the English leaders called on William (his son-in-law and nephew) to land an invasion army from the Netherlands.


On November 5, 1688 William had come ashore with approximately 11,000-foot and 4,000 horse soldiers.James's support began to dissolve almost immediately upon William's arrival; Protestant officers defected from the English army (the most notable of whom was Lord Churchill of Eyemouth, James's most able commander), and influential noblemen across the country declared their support for the invader.


After the Glorious Revolution of 1688, James was replaced by William who became king as William III, ruling jointly with his wife (James's daughter) Mary II. Thus William and Mary, both Protestants, became joint rulers in 1689. James at first attempted to resist William, but saw that his efforts would prove futile. William permitted James to leave the country, not wanting to make him a martyr for the Roman Catholic cause. James made one last serious attempt to recover his crowns, when he landed in Ireland in 1689 but, after the defeat of the Jacobite forces by the Williamite forces at the Battle of the Boyne in the summer of 1690, James returned to France.

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Guest Widow's Son

The definition of the word "Episcopal" has variation among Christian traditions. For some, Episcopal churches are churches that use a hierarchy of bishops that regard themselves as being in an unbroken, personal Apostolic succession.


The Scottish Episcopal Church dates from the final establishment of Presbyterianism in Scotland in 1690, when it split from the Church of Scotland.


The English church was under papal authority for nearly a thousand years, before separating from Rome in 1534 during the reign of King Henry VIII. A theological separation had been foreshadowed by various movements within the English church such as Lollardy, but the English Reformation gained political support when Henry VIII wanted an annulment of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon so he could marry Anne Boleyn. Under pressure from Catherine's nephew, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, Pope Clement VII refused the annulment. Eventually, Henry, although theologically a doctrinal Catholic, took the position of Supreme Head of the Church of England to ensure the annulment of his marriage. He was excommunicated by Pope Paul III.


Henry maintained a strong preference for traditional Catholic practices and, during his reign, Protestant reformers were unable to make many changes to the practices of the Church of England. Indeed, this part of Henry's reign saw the trial for heresy of Protestants as well as Roman Catholics.


The British monarch, at present Queen Elizabeth II, has the constitutional title of Supreme Governor of the Church of England. The canon law of the Church of England states, "We acknowledge that the Queen’s most excellent Majesty, acting according to the laws of the realm, is the highest power under God in this kingdom, and has supreme authority over all persons in all causes, as well ecclesiastical as civil.


Of the forty-four diocesan archbishops and bishops in the Church of England, only twenty-six are permitted to sit in the House of Lords. The Archbishops of Canterbury and York automatically have seats, as do the Bishops of London, Durham and Winchester. The remaining twenty-one seats are filled in order of seniority by consecration. It may take a diocesan bishop a number of years to reach the House of Lords, at which point he becomes a Lord Spiritual. The Bishop of Sodor and Man and the Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe are not eligible to sit in the House of Lords as their dioceses lie outside of the United Kingdom.

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Church of England


Ancient and modern roles of the Archbishop in the Church of England. The foundation of the See of Canterbury by St Augustine dates from 597, and the division of the English Church into the two provinces of Canterbury and York from 735


Each province has a principal bishop – an archbishop who has personal authority and jurisdiction at all times as the so-called 'metropolitan'. Since medieval times each has been acknowledged as a 'primate' (ie, bishop of the first see) of the church in England, Canterbury being the acknowledged since 1353 as the senior with the title of 'Primate of All England'. (Until 1920 the Province of Canterbury, and thus the Church of England, also included the bishops and dioceses in Wales.)


As metropolitan archbishops, Canterbury and York each have the right and the obligation to confirm the election of new diocesan bishops, and to ordain all new bishops within their province.


In connection with this responsibility, the influence of both archbishops in the senior appointments has grown immensely in the last century. Alternately they chair sessions of the Crown Nominations Commission whose job it is to identify and approve candidates for appointment as diocesan bishops the Church of England. Changing circumstances and emphases have promoted greater openness, transparency and fairness to the system of appointments throughout the Church.


By ancient and regular precedent the Archbishop of Canterbury has the right to preside at the Eucharist during which he anoints and crowns a new British monarch.


In addition to these ancient roles, the archbishops of Canterbury and York have a formal role in relation to each of the (relatively modern) central institutions that govern the Church of England.


All the information you need can be found here.



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I never knew the Queen of England and British Parliament oversee the Anglican Church.


Synodical Government Measure 1969

1969 No. 2


A Measure passed by The National Assembly of the Church of England to provide for the vesting by Canon of the functions, authority, rights and privileges of the Convocations of Canterbury and York in the General Synod of the Church of England, and for the modification by Canon of the functions of the said Convocations when sitting separately for their provinces; to rename and reconstitute the Church Assembly as the General Synod, and to make further provision for the synodical government of the Church of England, and for purposes connected with the matters aforesaid.


...if Her Majesty is pleased to grant Her Licence and Assent, it shall be lawful for the said Convocations to make, promulge and execute the said Canons, which shall have full force and effect.


The House of Bishops and the House of Clergy shall accordingly comprise the Upper and the Lower Houses respectively of the said Convocations, and the House of Laity shall be elected and otherwise constituted in accordance with the Church Representation Rules.




If the Episcopal church is in communion with the Anglican church, and the Catholic. Does that mean the Episcopal church recognizes and accepts the status position of the British Crown and the Pope?

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Guest Soldier of God

Anglican priests are converting to Catholicism.




Archbishop to meet with Pope after wave of conversions


Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the leader of the world's Anglicans, will meet Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday, following the conversion to Catholicism of five Church of England bishops.


"It's a private meeting. When he travels to Rome he tends to have an audience with the pope. It's not unusual," Marie Papworth, a press official for Williams in London, told AFP on Wednesday.


Williams took part in a Vatican-hosted conference on Christian unity on Wednesday to mark the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.


Five Church of England bishops this month announced they would convert to Catholicism under an offer from Benedict to welcome Anglicans disaffected by moves to ordinate women and homosexual clergy.


The Roman Catholic Church last year unveiled a controversial new juridical framework that made it easier for Anglicans -- both clergy and parishioners -- unhappy in the Church of England to join Catholic ranks.


Williams said at the time he had accepted the resignations "with regret", adding: "We wish them well in this next stage of their service to the Church."


In a statement, the bishops said they had been "dismayed, over the last 30 years, to see Anglicans and Catholics move further apart."


They said the Vatican offer was a "generous response to various approaches to the Holy See for help and a bold, new ecumenical instrument in the search for the unity of Christians."

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Many Continuing Anglicans believe that the faith of some churches in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury has become either unorthodox or un-Christian and therefore have not sought to also be in communion with them.




In a history-making gesture, conservative evangelical Anglicans, deeply alienated by the decline of the U.S. denomination, sounded a shofar to herald the creation of the Anglican Church of North America.


On a snowy Wednesday evening, about 1,000 worshipers, mostly from the U.S. and Canada, gathered in Wheaton, Illinois, for a worship service to celebrate the creation of the new entity, which comprises 656 congregations, 800 clergy, 30 bishops, and 100,000 people in regular worship. They represent the evangelical, charismatic, and Anglo-Catholic traditions within Anglicanism.


During a pre-service press conference, Bob Duncan, the former Episcopal bishop of Pittsburgh and now archbishop-designate for the new church, told news media that he expects the Episcopal Church (TEC) to continue its decline and that in time, the new province will come to replace it.


He said, "The Lord is displacing the Episcopal Church."

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Guest Royal Insigt

The Sovereign holds the title 'Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England'.


The Church of England, and the monarch's relation to it, was established through a series of Parliamentary Acts in the 1530s, which brought about the English Reformation.


Henry VIII broke from the Roman Catholic Church by denying papal claims to ecclesiastical or any other jurisdiction, and by declaring himself rather than the Pope as Supreme Head of the Church in England.


There are many examples of the relationship between the established Church and the State.


Archbishops and bishops are appointed by The Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister, who considers the names selected by a Church Commission. They take an oath of allegiance to The Queen on appointment and may not resign without Royal authority.


The connection between Church and State is also symbolised by the fact that the 'Lords Spiritual' (consisting of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York and 24 diocesan bishops) sit in the House of Lords. Parish priests also take an oath of allegiance to The Queen.


The General Synod (including the bishops, elected representatives from the clergy and the laity) is the supreme authority of the Church of England. The Queen opens the Synod after the elections in the dioceses every five years.


Since 1919, the Synod (formerly called the Church Assembly) has had the power to pass Measures on any matter concerning the Church of England.


Did you know?


The Preface to the 39 Articles of the Church of England describes the monarch as 'being by God's Ordinance, according to Our just Title, Defender of the Faith and ... Supreme Governor of the Church of England'.


In addition to legislating for the Church by Measure, the General Synod has the power to legislate by Canon in its own domestic affairs such as worship and doctrine, but The Queen's assent is required for the promulgation of such Canons. Such assent is given on the Home Secretary's advice.


In his or her coronation oath, the Sovereign promises to maintain the Church.


The Sovereign must be in communion with the Church of England, that is, a full, confirmed member.

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In the Church of Scotland, (a Presbyterian, national church), the monarch is automatically a member, but holds no leadership position. However, the monarch appoints the Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland as their personal representative, with a largely ceremonial role. However, the Queen has on occasion filled the role personally, as when she opened the General Assembly herself in 1977 and 2002 (her Silver and Golden Jubilee years)



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Guest GandalftheWhite

(A) Act of Supremacy (1559)


An act restoring to the crown the ancient jurisdiction over the state ecclesiastical and spiritual and abolishing all foreign power repugnant to the same. Most humbly beseech your most excellent majesty your faithful and obedient subjects, the lords spiritual and temporal and the commons in this your present parliament assembled, that, where in time of the reign of your most dear father of worthy memory, King Henry VIII, divers good laws and statutes were made and established, as well for the utter extinguishment and putting away of all usurped and foreign powers and authorities out of this your realm and other your highness's dominions and countries, as also for the restoring and uniting to the imperial crown of this realm the ancient jurisdictions, authorities, superiorities, and pre-eminences to the same of right belonging and appertaining; by reason whereof we, your most humble and obedient subjects, from the five-and-twentieth year of the reign of your said dear father, were continually kept in good order, and were disburdened of divers great and intolerable charges and exactions before that time unlawfully taken and exacted by such foreign power and authority as before that was usurped, until such time as all the said good laws ... in the first and second years of the reigns of the late King Philip and Queen Mary ... were ... repealed ...;[1] by reason of which act of repeal your said humble subjects were eftsoons brought under an usurped foreign power and authority, and yet do remain in that bondage, to the intolerable charges of your loving subjects, if some redress by the authority of this your high court of parliament with the assent of your highness be not had and provided: may it therefore please your highness, for the repressing of the said usurped foreign power and the restoring of the rights, jurisdictions, and pre-eminences appertaining to the imperial crown of this your realm, that it may be enacted by the authority of this present parliament that the said act ... and all and every branch, clauses, and articles therein contained, other than such branches, clauses, and sentences as hereafter shall be excepted, may from the last day of this session of parliament, by authority of this present parliament, be repealed, and shall from thenceforth be utterly void and of none effect....[2]


And to the intent that all usurped and foreign power and authority, spiritual and temporal, may forever be clearly extinguished and never to be used nor obeyed within this realm or any other your majesty's dominions or countries, may it please your highness that it may be further enacted by the authority aforesaid that no foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate, spiritual or temporal, shall at any time after the last day of this session of parliament use, enjoy, or exercise any manner of power, jurisdiction, superiority, authority, pre-eminence, or privilege, spiritual or ecclesiastical, within this realm or within any other your majesty's dominions or countries that now be or hereafter shall be, but from thenceforth the same shall be clearly abolished out of this realm and all other your highness's dominions forever, any statute, ordinance, custom, constitutions, or any other matter or cause whatsoever to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding ...; and that your highness, your heirs, and successors, kings or queens of this realm, shall have full power and authority ... to exercise ... all manner of jurisdictions, privileges, and preeminences in any wise touching or concerning any spiritual or ecclesiastical jurisdiction within these your realms....


And for the better observation and maintenance of this act, may it please your highness that it may be further enacted by the authority aforesaid that all and every archbishop, bishop, and all and every other ecclesiastical person and other ecclesiastical officer and minister, of what estate, dignity, pre-eminence, or degree soever he or they be or shall be, and all and every temporal judge, justicer, mayor, and other lay or temporal officer and minister, and every other person having your highness's fee or wages within this realm or any your highness's dominions shall make, take, and receive a corporal oath upon the Evangelist, before such person or persons as shall please your highness, your heirs or successors, under the great seal of England to assign and name to accept and take the same, according to the tenor and effect hereafter following, that is to say —


"I, A. B., do utterly testify and declare in my conscience that the queen's highness is the only supreme governor of this realm and of all other her highness's dominions and countries, as well in all spiritual or ecclesiastical things or causes as temporal, and that no foreign prince, person, prelate, state, or potentate hath or ought to have any jurisdiction, power, superiority, pre-eminence, or authority, ecclesiastical or spiritual, within this realm; and therefore I do utterly renounce and forsake all foreign jurisdictions, powers, superiorities, and authorities, and do promise that from henceforth I shall bear faith and true allegiance to the queen's highness, her heirs, and lawful successors, and to my power shall assist and defend all jurisdictions, pre-eminences, privileges, and authorities granted or belonging to the queen's highness, her heirs, and successors, or united or annexed to the imperial crown of this realm: so help me God and by the contents of this Book." ...[3]


And for the more sure observation of this act and the utter extinguishment of all foreign and usurped power and authority, may it please your highness that it may be further enacted by the authority aforesaid that, if any person or persons dwelling or inhabiting within this your realm or in any other your highness's realms or dominions ... , shall by writing, printing, teaching, preaching, express words, deed, or act, advisedly, maliciously, and directly affirm, hold, stand with, set forth, maintain, or defend the authority, pre-eminence, power, or jurisdiction, spiritual or ecclesiastical, of any foreign prince, prelate, person, state, or potentate whatsoever, heretofore claimed, used, or usurped within this realm or any dominion or country being within or under the power, dominion, or obeisance of your highness, or shall advisedly, maliciously, or directly put in ure or execute anything for the extolling, advancement, setting forth, maintenance, or defence of any such pretended or usurped jurisdiction, power, pre-eminence, or authority, or any part thereof, that then every such person and persons so doing and offending, their abettors, aiders, procurers, and counsellors, being thereof lawfully convicted and attainted according to the due order and course of the common laws of this realm [shall suffer specified penalties, culminating in punishment for high treason on the third offence]....


Provided always, and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, that such person or persons to whom your highness, your heirs, or successors, shall hereafter by letters patents under the great seal of England give authority to have or execute any jurisdiction, power, or authority spiritual, or to visit, reform, order, or correct any errors, heresies, schisms, abuses, or enormities by virtue of this act, shall not in any wise have authority or power to order, determine, or adjudge any matter or cause to be heresy but only such as heretofore have been determined, ordered, or adjudged to be heresy by the authority of the canonical Scriptures, or by the first four general councils or any of them, or by any other general council wherein the same was declared heresy by the express and plain words of the said canonical Scriptures, or such as hereafter shall be ordered, judged, or determined to be heresy by the high court of parliament of this realm, with the assent of the clergy in their convocation — anything in this act contained to the contrary notwithstanding....


Statutes of the Realm, IV, 350 f.: I Elizabeth, c. I.


[1] No. 78C.


[2] The following three sections revive Henry VIII's statutes declaring the supremacy of the crown in ecclesiastical affairs.


[3] Persons refusing to take this oath were to be debarred from offices in church and state.

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Guest Rosencruetz

Your Graces, The Convocations of Canterbury and York, duly called together in obedience to Our Royal Writs, are on this day joined together in accordance with the Synodical Government Measure 1969 and the House of Laity is added to them in accordance with that Measure, so as to constitute the ninth General Synod of the Church of England.

Those who serve the Church of England in its public ministry are required to affirm their loyalty to its inheritance of faith as their inspiration and guidance under God. They also declare their commitment to bringing the grace and truth of Christ and making him known to those in their care.

The opening of a new Synod is a moment when we can all give thanks for the witness of those who have gone before, and pray for wisdom as you seek to balance change and continuity in the decisions that lie ahead of you.

Next year will see two important anniversaries. It will be four hundred years since the publication of the Authorised Version of the Bible commissioned by King James, and two hundred years since the foundation of the National Society for Promoting Religious Education. Both developments had a lasting impact on the life of the Church and the nation.

The Authorised Version has remained one of the defining elements of our heritage. Similarly the Church of England’s initiative to build new schools at the beginning of the nineteenth century created a momentum which led eventually to Parliament establishing a universal right to education.

In our more diverse and secular society, the place of religion has come to be a matter of lively discussion. It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue and that the wellbeing and prosperity of the nation depend on the contribution of individuals and groups of all faiths and of none. Yet, as the recent visit of His Holiness The Pope reminded us, churches and the other great faith traditions retain the potential to inspire great enthusiasm, loyalty and a concern for the common good.

The new Synod will have many issues to resolve to ensure that the Church of England remains equipped for the effective pursuit of its mission and ministry. Some will, no doubt, involve difficult, even painful, choices. But Christian history suggests that times of growth and spiritual vigour have often coincided with periods of challenge and testing. What matters is holding firmly to the need to communicate the gospel with joy and conviction in our society.

For at the heart of our faith stand not a preoccupation with our own welfare and comfort but the concepts of service and of sacrifice as shown in the life and teachings of the one who made himself nothing, taking the very form of a servant.

A report to the last Synod concluded with St Paul’s encouragement to the Ephesian church to "lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace."

Archbishops and members of the Synod, the five years ahead will not always be straightforward. But I am confident that with the encouragement of these words of St. Paul and the certainty of the love of God, you will find the strength and the vision to work together to succeed. May the Lord’s blessing be on you as you embark on your important deliberations.
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I am more interested in what the Queen said to the Pope back in September. I thought it very respectful.


Your Holiness,


I am delighted to welcome you to the United Kingdom, and particularly to Scotland, on your first visit as Pope. I recall with great pleasure the memorable pastoral visit of the late Pope John Paul II to this country in 1982. I also have vivid memories of my four visits to the Vatican, and of meeting some of your predecessors on other occasions. I am most grateful to them for receiving, over the years, a number of members of my family with such warm hospitality.


Much has changed in the world during the nearly thirty years since Pope John Paul's visit. In this country, we deeply appreciate the involvement of the Holy See in the dramatic improvement in the situation in Northern Ireland. Elsewhere the fall of totalitarian regimes across central and eastern Europe has allowed greater freedom for hundreds of millions of people. The Holy See continues to have an important role in international issues, in support of peace and development and in addressing common problems like poverty and climate change.


Your Holiness, your presence here today reminds us of our common Christian heritage, and of the Christian contribution to the encouragement of world peace, and to the economic and social development of the less prosperous countries of the world. We are all aware of the special contribution of the Roman Catholic Church particularly in its ministry to the poorest and most deprived members of society, its care for the homeless and for the education provided by its extensive network of schools.


Religion has always been a crucial element in national identity and historical self-consciousness. This has made the relationship between the different faiths a fundamental factor in the necessary cooperation within and between nation states. It is, therefore, vital to encourage a greater mutual, and respectful understanding. We know from experience that through committed dialogue, old suspicions can be transcended and a greater mutual trust established.


I know that reconciliation was a central theme in the life of Cardinal John Henry Newman, for whom you will be holding a Mass of Beatification on Sunday. A man who struggled with doubt and uncertainty, his contribution to the understanding of Christianity continues to influence many. I am pleased that your visit will also provide an opportunity to deepen the relationship between the Roman Catholic Church and the established Church of England and the Church of Scotland.


Your Holiness, in recent times you have said that 'religions can never become vehicles of hatred, that never by invoking the name of God can evil and violence be justified'. Today, in this country, we stand united in that conviction. We hold that freedom to worship is at the core of our tolerant and democratic society.


On behalf of the people of the United Kingdom I wish you a most fruitful and memorable visit.

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I wonder how many will actually defect?? I found this statement in Time.


The Archbishop appeared relatively relaxed over the affair when he issued a short, simple statement on Monday noting his "regret" at the bishops' decision. "We wish them well in this next stage of their service to the church," he added. "And I am grateful to them for their faithful and devoted pastoral labors in the Church of England over so many years."


But one of the bishops, John Broadhurst, told the Times of London he believes there will be significant further defections amongst the clergy and perhaps thousands of ordinary churchgoers. "There are lots of people interested," he said. "Some are actively looking at it. A lot of people are saying they will wait and see how it develops." Although it's a tough decision, he said, considering how Rome is not offering to replace the homes or salaries of any defectors, "I suspect thousands, not hundreds, of laity will go."

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The leaders of the GAFCON movement are keenly aware of the crises of conscience that are pressing some people to shift their membership and ministry from the Anglican Church.


While we are greatly sympathetic that there are many areas of crisis that assault conscience, once again, we would offer that the theological clarity of the Jerusalem Declaration offers a solid foundation on which to engage with other Anglicans in the pursuit of Gospel mission.


Being able to link with those who not only form the majority of Anglicans in the world, but also those who affirm Biblical theological foundations of what Anglicans have always believed and practiced can provide concrete relationships and meaningful partnerships that are of more substance than the structures that have shown themselves to be flawed or compromised.


GAFCON provides a way to share Biblical Anglicanism that is in concert with what Anglicans have always believed, taught, and practiced.


We believe that Anglicanism has a great deal to offer in the pursuit of reaching the world for Christ. While we wish those who are departing the Anglican Church well, we do not believe that it is necessary to depart from what Anglicans have always believed to remain faithful. At the same time, we understand that some structures have become so compromised that some have been pressed by conscience to separate from their national structures - such as in North America.


We are glad that GAFCON exists and provides links to remain Anglican when people have been unable, for conscience, to remain in their Province.


In England (as well as other areas), we invite people to re-affirm what we have always believed in Anglicanism by adopting the Jerusalem Declaration as a statement of their own faith and join with us in partnership in working to win the world to Christ. It is with that perspective that the leaders of GAFCON met recently in Oxford and they share their thoughts from that gathering in the attached document.


The Most Rev. Gregory J. Venables, GAFCON Chair

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The Episcopal and Anglican church are going against the teaching of the bible.


Leviticus - Chapter 18

22 "You will not have intercourse with a man as you would with a woman. This is a hateful thing.

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