Anglican Church in America (TAC) Presiding Bishop’s Summer Newsletter

Is out:

Diocese of the Northeast

Rt. Rev. Brian Marsh, Bishop


Dear Friends in Christ,

Please know of my prayers for you all as we begin our Summer activities. We all need a periodic respite from our labors and we have come to look at Summertime as an opportunity to do just that. I am very aware and deeply moved by the dedication of our faithful clergy and lay people. Many of you work long hours for God’s holy church. But we need times of refreshment and I encourage everyone to make use of the Summer days to relax and witness to God’s wonderful creation…

Above all, please know of my prayers for you all during this time – and always. Have a wonderful summer everyone.



Read on here for news of the Church.



Englishman Makes Catholic History in Canada

On Saturday 30th June an Englishman became one of the first former Anglicans in Canada to be ordained for service in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter. He was ordained by the Bishop of Calgary, the Most Revd Frederick Henry, at the request of the Ordinary, Monsignor Jeffrey Steenson.

Fr Lee Kenyon, who trained for the Anglican ministry at the College of the Resurrection, Mirfield, and served as a curate in the Anglican diocese of Blackburn, is part of the first ordination class for the Ordinariate in the US and Canada. He was ordained following a four month formation programme run from St Mary’s Seminary in Houston, Texas.

Fr Kenyon was born and raised in Manchester, Lancashire. He is married to Elizabeth, and they have three children.

Fr Kenyon’s parish, St John the Evangelist, was the second oldest Anglican parish in Calgary, founded in 1905 as a parish of the Church of England in Canada (from 1955 the Anglican Church of Canada), until being received, en masse, into the Catholic Church in December 2011. The parish community remains at its historic property through a lease/purchase agreement with the Anglican Diocese of Calgary.

For more information visit:




Msgr Jeffery Steenson on Becoming Men and Women of Communion

At the California Ordination and Reception:

Thank you to Bishop Brown and Bishop Flores for your presence and support, as our brothers and sisters are brought into full communion through the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, and as Deacon Andrew Bartus is ordained to the sacred order of priest.  The Ordinariate depends on these collegial relationships with the local diocese, and I thank you all for your enthusiastic support for this work, so close to the heart of our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI.

Perhaps you will allow me to take a moment to breath deeply the air of this holy place.  One weekday morning some 20 years ago, I came from a nearby conference and sat quietly in this place to pray.  The breezes were blowing through the windows, the birds were singing, and I asked Fr. Junipero Serra for a prayer.  I was struggling with a vocational decision, whether to stand for an ecclesial office in the Episcopal Church.  It would have meant years of conflict in an ecclesial community undergoing profound changes.  And the answer that I was given here that day?  Be careful to do nothing that might take you further away from full communion with the Catholic Church.  You want this mission church to be your church: to be incorporated in its faith and life.  I cannot begin to tell you what a joy it is for me to be a part of this holy work today.

On this feast of St. Thomas the Apostle, who carried the Gospel to lands far off, as blessed Junipero Serra did here, this desire for authentic apostolic life continues to move the hearts of Christian people.  For those who are not in communion with the Catholic Church, this desire for apostolicity is certainly present as well — it just needs to be awakened and nurtured.  This important element in the mission of the Ordinariate is part of Pope Benedict’s vision for the new evangelization.

In our second reading, Paul writes to the Christians in Ephesus to encourage them: because of your faith in Christ and the Cross, you have been given the gift of communion.  You really belong now!  “So you no longer are strangers and sojourners … you are no longer aliens or foreign visitors.  You are citizens like all the saints, members of God’s household” (Eph. 2:19).  By grace you have been included in this house of salvation, whose firm foundation rests on the eternity of the blessed Trinity; its cornerstone Jesus Christ, true God and true man, who holds everything together; the stones of its walls made up of the Prophets and Patriarchs and the Apostles and the Saints.  This house of salvation stands, an impregnable fortress, for all of time; it is anchored in the mystery of God’s being; it reaches out to welcome all who seek to make it their home.  We call it the Catholic Church.

The church father Marius Victorinus (Rome’s most famous convert) commented on how St. Paul cleverly changed the tense of the verbs in this lesson to make it an exhortation to the Ephesians.  They have not yet fully entered into this unity, but are still being built up, “growing into a holy temple in the Lord” (Eph. 2:21).  This is to put the dynamic in Catholic life: we zealously make it our aim to continue on this journey to full communion, the destination being the blessed Trinity, and our companions along the way all who bear the name Christian.  Thus we rejoice over this gift of communion, but we must remember also its obligations.

There is a remarkable passage in Pope John Paul II’s great letter, Pastores dabo vobis (43), which serves as the foundation for the formation of priests.  I offer this to our brother Andrew, who is to be ordained a priest.  But I invite all who are coming to full communion this morning to let these words speak to them:

“In order that his ministry may be humanly as credible and acceptable as possible, it is important that the priest should mold his human personality in such a way that it becomes a bridge and not an obstacle for others in their meeting with Jesus Christ the Redeemer of humanity.”  He is called “… to be a ‘man of communion.’  This demands that the priest not be arrogant, or quarrelsome, but affable, hospitable, sincere in his words and heart, prudent and discreet, generous and ready to serve, capable of opening himself to clear and brotherly relationships and of encouraging the same in others, and quick to understand, forgive and console.”

Pope John Paul went on to suggest that we should consider these words from St. Paul as a seminary in a verse, so to speak:  “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things” (Phil. 4:8).

These words, of course, are meant for all of us.  And in them we can see the challenge of becoming men and women of communion.  At so many points in our common life we encounter forces and attitudes which have the effect of dividing God’s people.  Because of sin, it is all to easy to fall into those habits and behaviors which are completely antithetical to the blessed, priceless gift of communion that we celebrate this morning.  You know, dear brothers and sisters, that it is by grace we have come to this moment.  Our hearts are full of joy and thanksgiving.  But let us be careful of each step we take, from this time forward, so that our lives will bear witness to this gift of unity.  Always remember the Church, this household of faith.  Do your part to build her up and guard her unity. Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, welcome to your new home!

Now, on the occasion: Unusual Mass Turns Anglicans Catholic:

Nearly 500 years after the Church of England broke away from Roman Catholicism, a small group of Episcopalians returned to the fold Tuesday during a special Mass at Mission Basilica in San Juan Capistrano.

As part of a reunification program authorized by Pope Benedict, two Episcopal congregations and a married Anglican priest were welcomed into the Catholic faith during the service, which was led by Bishop Tod Brown.

The Anglican churches, Blessed John Henry Newman of Santa Ana and Vista-based Saint Augustine of Canterbury, are now organized in “ordinariates,” geographic regions similar to a Catholic diocese.

In addition, Anglican priest Andrew Bartus was officially ordained as a Catholic priest Tuesday, even though he is married and has a child. Like others joining the Catholic Church across the nation, his congregation will maintain distinctive elements of Anglican practices.

All told, about 70 members of both congregations were confirmed as Catholics at the ceremony.

“What a joy it is for me to be a part of this holy work today,” Msgr. Jeffrey N. Steenson told the crowd. Referring to the New Testament’s book of Ephesians, he said the newcomers were “no longer sojourners or travelers … you are citizens, like all the saints, members of God’s household.”

In the audience, Fred and Barbara Wood of Oceanside said they couldn’t wait for the times to catch up to them. They recently left the Episcopal Church earlier – where Fred was a deacon – and joined St. Margaret, a Catholic parish in Oceanside. They made the trip to San Juan because they knew many of the newly confirmed and wanted to show their support, they said.

With everyone together again, it felt “absolutely” like home, Fred Wood said.

In 2009, Pope Benedict XVI paved the way for reunification with willing Episcopalians. The U.S. Ordinariates were formed at the beginning of the year, and Tuesday’s Mass was the first of its kind for Orange and San Diego counties.

Although the media have reported conservative Episcopalians are joining Catholics as a response to liberal policies, such as allowing gay bishops and female priests, there was no talk of such issues at Mission Basilica on Tuesday.

“I’m here to support my mother,” said Marie McCarron of Vista, who belongs to St. Patrick Catholic Church in Carlsbad. Her mom, Irene Gilmore, had been Episcopalian. “It makes me glad we’re now the same faith. We’re blessed. I feel blessed.”

The coming together was also poignant for Msgr. Arthur Holquin of Mission Basilica.

“I was ordained in 1974, just 10 years after the [Second Vatican Council],” Holquin said. The great goal of the council was to realize the Lord’s dream in the Last Supper that all might be one.”

There are plenty of photos here.

Congratulations and blessings to Fr Andrew Bartus!


England, America, and the Anglican Communion

From it:

… Then, in the 1930’s, the Anglican Communion became the first Christian faith in 1900 years to allow contraception rather than to reject it as a moral evil.  This further led to a rejection of Episcopalianism in Dixie, as Southerners recognized that this was a corruption of the Christian doctrine, and it got worse as a result of the 1960’s sexual revolution, as the “values” of that revolution infected mainline Protestantism (especially the Episcopal Church), and even the Eastern Orthodox Church by the end of the decade.  More conservative Episcopalians formed the “Continuing Anglican Movement”, and many of them wanted to become Catholic, as it was primarily the Catholic Church that had not budged on these issues, and by 1980 Pope John Paul II approved, and so in the 1980’s the Anglican Use was invented and former Episcopalian clergy converted and were ordained in the Catholic Church to preach to their old congregations.  Then in 1991 the Traditional Anglican Communion was formed from the Continuing Anglican Movement, and in 2007 they requested full communion with the Holy See.  In 2009 the idea of the Anglican personal ordinariate began in the Catholic Church, and the first ever was founded in Walsingham, England in 2011, and the second was founded six months ago in Houston, Texas–right in Dixie!  In other words, this most recent movement seems to have a lot to do with the rise of the Catholic Church in Dixie, combined with the fact that the Episcopal Church nowadays is no longer recognizable as Christian, not to mention the Evangelical spirit that has been in Dixie since 1865, itself due to a desire by the war-weary South for a simpler and more personal form of Christianity.  And so things are starting to come full circle now.

If trends like this continue into the future, we’re probably looking at more Anglican personal ordinariates…

Read the whole post at a Pair O’ Dimes.