Monday, February 11, 2008

Pro Ecclesia Anglicana!

"See to it that you teach nothing. . .which you would have religiously held and believed by the people, save what is agreeable to the teaching of the Old or New Testament, and what the Catholic fathers and ancient bishops have collected from this self-same doctrine."
The Canons of the Church of England, 1571

THE Anglican Reformers and Divines, notably Archbishop Thomas Cranmer, Bishop John Jewel, Bishop Lancelot Andrewes and Archbishop William Laud, meant to reform, purify, and preserve Catholic Christianity within England, not create something novel. In the words of Bishop John Cosin, Anglicanism was to be "Protestant and Reformed according to the principles of the Ancient Catholic Church."

THE Anglican Church has distinct theological, liturgical, and spiritual traditions, forged in an appeal to the ancient Church. It is the goal of the Society of Archbishops Cranmer and Laud to evangelize others to Christ, being mindful of Anglican principles, as well as to make this tradition known as a living path of Christianity.

THE Society is established to be beneficial to members of the Anglican Church, particularly the clergy and especially those in the traditional Anglican community, who desire to see the Anglican Christianity of the Book of Common Prayer strengthened and preserved. For more information:

Why Archbishops Cranmer & Laud?
"We must honour Thomas Cranmer and be grateful to him, for in the English Bible, the Book of Common Prayer, the Book of Homilies, he helped translate and reform the faith and worship of the English speaking world, recalling it to a simpler more direct proclamation of Christ and the Gospel. His faith enriches ours day by day and week by week whenever we pick up the Scriptures, open the Prayer Book, and indeed, whenever we open our mouths, for along with Shakespeare, the English Bible (revised again in 1611, admittedly) and the Book of Common Prayer are as formative of our very language as they are of our faith."
The Rev'd David Garrett, the Prayer Book Society of Canada

"Gratefully remembered by scholars, Laud has found apologists among the clergy of the Church for which he died, but he is not generally loved. If his methods had been mistaken, his diagnosis of the ills of the Anglican Church has been right and his vision for its improvement had been lofty. . . .Had he succeeded in what he meant to do, he would be one of the great architects of the English Church. He failed, and sealed his failure with his blood. He stands with Archbishop Cranmer as an imperfect and much criticised man, but in the final record a faithful servant and martyr whose blood has been the seed of the Church."Historian C.V. Wedgewood in The King's War

Principles of the Society:
1) The spread of the Christianity as enshrined in the faith of the historic Church of England, Reformed and Protestant according to the principles of the Ancient Catholic Church (after the teaching of Bp. Cosin), as taken from the One canon of Holy Scripture in the Two Testaments, as taught in the Three Creeds of Western Christendom, as clarified by the Four Ecumenical Councils of the undivided Church, as practiced during the first Five centuries of the ancient Church (after the teaching of Bishop Lancelot Andrewes, Abp. Laud’s mentor: This is not meant to deny the orthodox teaching of all Seven Councils, only to affirm the importance and primacy of the first Four).

2) Dedication to the prayerful study of the Holy Scriptures and ancient Fathers and Doctors of the Church, per the principles of Abp. Cranmer during the Reformation.

3) Holding to the doctrinal teachings of the Reformed Church of England as clarified in the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion and as understood in their historical context based on a patristic and reformed foundation.

4) Holding to the sacramental teachings of Anglicanism as espoused in the Church of England’s 39 Articles, the Catechism of the 1662 Prayer Book, the 1662-1928 Prayer Books, and the Ordinal, stressing the preeminence of Baptism and the Holy Eucharist.

5) Dedication to the continued use of the classic English translation of Holy Scripture, the 1611 text dedicated to King James I or a close derivation or revision thereof (RSV, ESV, ASV, NKJV).

6) Perpetuation of the use of the classical and orthodox Church of England Prayer Books of 1549, 1662, and 1928, the 1928 American Prayer Book and the 2003 Prayer Book of the Reformed Episcopal Church (containing the 1662 English and 1928 American services), and the 1962 Canadian Book of Common Prayer.

7) Dedication to the study of the Anglican divines, particularly of the Reformation and Restoration periods.


Jeff said...

God fave the King!

highchurchman said...

A Continuing Churchman, I would like very much to join the Society you propose.

Anonymous said...

Bravo! The key to understanding the center of authentic Anglicanism grasping it embraces both Cranmer and Laud, not one or the other. The Councils and the 39 Articles, not one or the other. Neither Rome nor Geneva, not one or the other.

Canon Tallis said...

And just when I was beginning to enjoy myself by reading the archives of "An Anglican Cleric" I have another sourse of delight to keep up with. Someone is being very good to me and I shall not complain.