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Four Continuing Anglican Bodies Establish Full Communion (Communio in sacris)

Four Continuing Anglican Bodies Establish Full Communion (Communio in sacris)

By David W. Virtue, DD
www.virtueonline.org
October 6, 2017

Four Continuing Anglican bodies made history this week, 40 years after they broke away from The Episcopal Church over the ordination of women.

In Atlanta this week, The Anglican Catholic Church, The Anglican Church in America, The Anglican Province of America and The Diocese of the Holy Cross signed a Communio in sacris establishing full communion with each other.

The ordination of women priests in the United States in 1976 was the lightening rod issue that led to the founding of the Continuing Anglican Movement in 1977. Its Affirmation of St. Louis declared the ordination of women (by the Episcopal Church in the USA and the Anglican Church of Canada) to be a matter of schism and to have caused a break with apostolic succession.

In their statement this week they declared:

We acknowledge each other to be orthodox and catholic Anglicans in virtue of our common adherence to the authorities accepted by and summarized in The Affirmation of St. Louis in the faith of the Holy Tradition of the Undivided catholic church and of the seven Ecumenical Councils.

We recognize in each other in all essentials the same faith; the same sacraments; the same moral teaching; and the same worship; likewise, we recognize in each other the same Holy Orders of bishops, priests, and deacons in the same Apostolic Succession, insofar as we all share the episcopate conveyed to the Continuing Churches in Denver in January 1978 in response to the call oif the congress of Saint Louis; therefore,

We welcome members of all of our Churches to Holy Communion and parochial life in any and all of the congregations of our Churches; and,

We pledge to pursue full, institutional, and organic union with each other, in a manner that respects tender consciences, builds consensus and harmony, and fulfills increasingly our Lord's will that His Church be united; and,

We pledge also to seek unity with other Christians, including those who understand themselves to be Anglican, insofar as such unity is consistent with the essentials of Catholic faith, order, and moral teaching

The following signatures included:

The Most Rev. Brian R. Marsh - Anglican Church in America
The Most Rev. Mark Haverland - Anglican Catholic Church
The Most Rev. Walter Grundorff - Anglican Province of America
The Rt. Rev. Paul C. Hewett - Diocese of the Holy Cross

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