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Saturday, April 04, 2009

VirtueOnline: Blueprint For New Anglican Province Will Offer Alternative To Episcopal Church

Several leaders of the new Anglican Church of North America gathered to outline their plans for the future of Anglicanism in North America. They met at Holy Cross Church in Logansville, GA (near Atlanta) where my fellow Arrow Leadership US Class of 1999 grad, The Rev. Foley Beach, is the Rector.

It appears that ACNA will supplant The Episcopal Church and be recognized by the vast majority of Anglicans around the world as the legitimate form of Anglicanism in the US.

If you have not been following the The Episcopal and Anglican scene, we are seeing an historic schism and recomposing the church at both of provincial and global level.

The Episcopal Church will not fold and go away any time soon. One lesson I've learned over the years is that churches do not die quickly or easily. Despite losing whole dioceses, church attendance hemorrhaging, spending massive amounts of money in lawsuits and in certain pockets seemingly heterodox theology, TEC will not die any time soon. They may continue to lose influence and relevance but they will not die. They have way too much money to die and way too many priests who are relying on them for their pension.

It seems that many churches have not left TEC because they wanted to be in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury and be part of the global Anglican Communion. But with the emergence of ACNA, the connection to TEC may be needless.

Exciting times to be an Anglican.

Comments on "VirtueOnline: Blueprint For New Anglican Province Will Offer Alternative To Episcopal Church"

 

Blogger Beth B said ... (12:10 AM, April 06, 2009) : 

I can't keep up with things--last I heard there was a group called AMIA...who are they in relation to ACNA? Will they continue alongside, or be folded in?

 

Blogger theultrarev said ... (9:54 AM, April 06, 2009) : 

Nice favicon Beth.

Anglicans love acronyms. It's like they have a secret Canon Missioner somewhere whose only job is to make these things up. It is mind boggling the how many there are.

The AMIA (Anglican Mission in America) is a missionary endeavor to the US from the Anglican Church in Rwanda. Similarly, the Anglican Church in Nigeria has one called CANA (Convocation of Anglicans in North America).

Both of these groups and others are part of what has been called the Common Cause Partnership, which is a federation of orthodox believing Anglicans there are several of these groups.

Another layer of the story is the Anglican Communion Network (or "The Network"). This is a network of orthodox churches and dioceses that have defected from The Episcopal Church (TEC) and are still in TEC.

The Network supports and works in conjunction with the Common Cause Partnership. If I understand it correctly, these groups will morph in the ACNA.

ACNA is important and historic because it is looking to supplant TEC. Worldwide Anglicanism has divided the globe into Provinces with national and geographic archdioceses whose heads are in communion with the Archbishop of Canterbury and by so doing are all in communion with each other.

That broke down in recent years as most of global Anglicanism, though in communion with Canterbury, no longer is so with TEC. It's this same majority that is looking to recognize ACNA and marginalize TEC, all whilst doing so without the explicit support of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

It's complicated and seemingly tedious. Yet at the same time, I find it very exciting and see God's hand in it. Groups that weren't working together previously are now doing so. Groups are sending missionaries to and creating missional organizations in the US.

And I think that Anglicanism as a whole has a lot to offer the US catholic (lower case "c") church that the Episcopal Church did not.

 

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