"The Preachers chiefly shall take heed that they teach nothing in their preaching, which they would have the people religiously to observe and believe, but that which is agreeable to the Doctrine of the Old Testament and the New, and that which the Catholick Fathers and Ancient Bishops have gathered out of that Doctrine." A proposed canon of Elizabeth I, 1571

My Photo
Location: Bedford, Texas, United States

I am a presbyter in the diocese of Fort Worth, Texas (Anglican Church in North America). I serve as Chaplain at St. Vincent's School and as a canon of St. Vincent's Cathedral Church in Bedford, Texas. In addition to my parish duties and teaching Religion classes in the school I am also the Middle School Social Studies teacher.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Father Heidt on the One Holy Catholic Church

There is a thought-provoking essay on ecclesiology by the Rev. Dr. John Heidt posted on his blog, Transfiguration. Here is a sample:

Anglicans are Catholics. Originally they were English Catholics, spiritual descendents of the Celtic Christians of the earliest centuries and of St. Augustine, sent to England by Pope Gregory the Great in the 6th century to be the first Archbishop of Canterbury. Chiefly through the spread of the British Empire, Anglicans are now found throughout the world and of every culture and civilization. Being the largest communion of Christians after Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox, there are now more Anglicans in Nigeria than anywhere else in the world.

Anglicans officially adhere to the same ancient apostolic and catholic faith as Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox: the same scriptures, the same creeds, sacraments, and ministry. But unlike official Roman Catholic teaching we believe in what the Eastern Orthodox call autocephalous churches, that is to say, churches that are free to run their own affairs within the context of catholic faith and order.

Anglicans believe that local and regional bishops and pastors can understand and respond to the spiritual needs of their people better than a centralized authority.On controversial issues Anglicans have always relied on tradition. They look to the thought of the undivided church in the first Christian millennium, believing that the Holy Spirit has faithfully guided the whole church into all truth, not just one particular national church or denomination.


Blogger Fr Nigel said...

Surely it is rather dishonest to interpret Anglican provincial autonomy as simply a Western reflection of the autocephalous structures of Easter Orthodoxy? The Eastern Church relies on a strict adherance to the same faith within its jurisdictions. Anglicanism has no such common faith and recent 'communion breaking' events only make the situation worse.

10:14 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

View My Stats