Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Bishop Keith Ackerman

Bishop Keith Ackerman announced that after consulting with his wife, friends and physicians he will retire as bishop of Quincy, effective November 1.  God bless you, +Keith.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Saint Simon and Saint Jude, Apostles

The Collect

O ALMIGHTY God, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head corner-stone; Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made an holy temple acceptable unto thee; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

Friday, October 24, 2008


Time To Take Our Leave

The 2008 General Council of the REC, meeting in Victoria, BC will conduct it's final day of worship, fellowship and business tomorrow, Friday, but we, the weary travellers from the MSJ, must take our leave in the morning. We have American customs to clear and we have been forewarned that this might not be a simple or speedy task in this day and age. We must leave the Island again by ferry. A rental car awaits us for the long drive to Sea-Tac airport in Washington State, from which we must catch our "red-eye" flights to return to our homes in Michigan and Texas. We covet your prayers for travel safety and mercies. We shall not soon forget the beauty of both Victoria, BC or of God's people of the REC who gathered to seek His face, hear His Word, and do His work this week.

Fr Bob Tomlinson
Fr Francis Wardega
Bp Frederick Fick

Thursday, October 23, 2008

REC General Council Victoria, B.C.

REC Approves Trial Use

In the afternoon session today, the REC General Council unanimously approved the trial use of An Anglican Prayer Book, a contemporary language adaption of the 1662 BCP, which was developed for use in the Anglican Mission in the Americas.

Gospel Choir

The Diocese of the SouthEast formed a voluntary choir and regaled the General Council congregation with two selections of Gospel music at the conclusion of morning prayer. The sanctuary rocked with the tempo and soul of the singing. What a joy!!

Meanwhile - Building The Church - Literally

The building is going up!

After many years of worshiping in and outgrowing a borrowed space, Christ's Community Church -Anglican MSJ, Liberty, Kentucky is raising their new church building on their owned land. The members of the parish are talented craftsman, wood workers, steel fabricators and are making alive the words we pray in the Eucharistic Prayer.... "and here we offer and present unto Thee, O Lord, our selves, our souls, our bodies, to be a reasonable, holy, and living sacrifice unto Thee;"

St Andrew's Choir

Fr Brian Foos, of St Andrew's Academy, Diocese of the West, traveled up to Victoria with the choir. These youthful voices led the assembly in sung Evensong last evening. Wonderfully done.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Don't See These Much In America, eh?

To our wonderment, right next to the Church here in Victoria is this beautiful lawn bowling center. Imagine a city lot of approximately 200 X 200 feet, turfed with grass, grown and manicured exactly like a golf green.

We don't see a lot of these back in the "D".

Breaking News: REC approves GAFCON Statement

Following a recommendation by the Presiding Bishop of the REC, Leonard W. Riches, the 52nd General Council of the Reformed Episcopal Church today affirmed the GAFCON Statement and the Jerusalem Declaration. A rousing standing vote was taken with loud applause.

Bishop Donald Harvey- Canada

Our special guest was Bishop Don Harvey, leader of the orthodox Anglicans of Canada. What a joy to hear the witness of Bishop Harvey.

Fr Bob Tomlinson msj and Bishop Harvey converse over coffee.

Bishop Frederick Fick and host bishop, Charles Dorrington share a moment.

Opening Eucharist At The COOL Church

Church of our Lord, (COOL) a historic parish of the Anglican North West, is the site of the REC General Council. The old gothic sanctuary could barely seat the over 500 delegates of the opening service of Holy Communion. Supported by a full choir and pipe organ, the hymns were sung with full voice to the glory of God.

Addressing the worshipers was the homilist for the convocation, The Very Rev. Dr. Justyn Terry, Dean of Trinity Episcopal School for Ministry. Preaching from Galations 1, we learned three things in this opening portion of Dr Terry's week long message.

1. The Gospel is not of man's invention, but is God's revelation (vs 11-12)
2. The Gospel is what transformed Saul, the persecutor into Paul the Apostle (vs 13-17)
3. The Gospel he taught was later confirmed by Peter and apostles (v 18-24)

The Galatians who were questioning Paul's authority needed to be challenged. The true Gospel is not 'You are accepted as you are; many ways to God; not just sin/repentance'.

The true Gospel calls for repentance and the Holy Spirit will transform. The General Council has begun!!

Oh! Victoria

The journey was long and through three times zones. The destination was the Reformed Episcopal Church's General Council held every four years. The location was the city of Victoria on Vancouver Island. We left Detroit at 9:30 Am and landed at 11:30 AM - but there was a three hour time difference, not in our favor. The American northwest and British Columbia (bring your passports) were magnificent with the mountains in the backdrop. The ferry ride through the Sound was a panorama of sights

16 hours after leaving home, we were finally at the hotel, where we greeted many other attendees. Bishop Royal Grote, bishop of the Diocese of Middle America and head of the Missions Board for the REC; Bishop Richard Boyce bishop of the Diocese of the West, our own bishop visitor.

What was it like? It was exciting! It was anticipatory. You could see it in the faces of all we met. All knew that we are on the verge of the next significant - really historical - step: the establishment of the new Anglican Province in North America. Faithful and evangelical will be marks of the new province. God calls us there. We want to be there. The world awaits the announcement. The GAFCON primate bishops and many other bishops await the announcement so that they may recognize and affirm the new province. We have just barely arrived but we can see it - feel it - sense it. Excitement. More as the Council proceeds in the next three days.

fr francis wardega MSJ
Office of Foreign Missions

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Liturgy is God’s Leiturgia

     Quoting from Richard A. Krause’s paper “Worship Wars at the Dawn of a New Millennium: Lutheranism and the Means of Grace vs. the 'Success Story' of American Evangelicalism":


The church must be visible. Its true marks, the right preaching of the Word and the administration of the sacraments, are to be perceptible to the eye of the people. Though the church does not consist in external things such as ceremonies and rites, and though her true essence remains unknown to the unbeliever, the presence of the church is established by the preaching of the gospel and the administration of the sacraments. Lutherans insist that the church is not upheld by the piety of the believers but by the external means of Word and sacrament. As Luther said, "Where the gospel is, there is Christ. Where Christ is, there is the Holy Spirit and his kingdom, the true kingdom of heaven."


The liturgy of the church is the word in action. It is properly referred to as Gottesdienst, or "divine service." The liturgy is God's leiturgia, his public service to his fallen creation through Jesus Christ in the Holy Spirit. The liturgy is comprised of the deeds and words of Jesus. They are cleansing words that bring forgiveness, life, and salvation. God is the subject, and we are the objects of his service. Unfortunately, in the English-speaking world, worship is most often understood primarily as something we do to recognize the greatness of God. Such a view stands in opposition to Lutheran worship. It turns worship into an anthropocentric activity defined by what we do and what we understand God to be. Lutheran worship will always emphasize the opposite idea, that worship comes from God to us. The gifts of God always stand at the center. Thus, worship is not just another program of the church, but it is the very heartbeat of our life with God as he comes with his gifts and we respond in our prayers, praise, and hymns.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Michael W Smith

Do Anglo-Catholics really like contemporary Christian music?  
Well, a lot of us do.   Really!
Michael W. Smith's music has been a blessing to many of us for a long time now. In fact, I believe his live album, "Worship Again", recorded in Louisville, KY, to be his some of his very best work.
Here are a few of our favorite clips:

An Interesting Liturgical Work

Fr. Richard Sutter S.S.M. ( has been busy, it seems, working to produce a contemporary mass for traditional Anglican-Catholics.

He invites critique and reflection from his readers.
Study his work here:

So, what do you think?

Says Fr. Sutter: " After seeing the products of attempts to translate parts of the 1662 BCP and the U.S. 1928 BCP into modern English with varying degrees of success, I was about to give up, as have so many, the idea that liturgy could be written in modern English without sounding either pedestrian or trendy - or horrible. (Imagine if you will, beginning every prayer with “We just want to praise you, Father God….”) So I thought I might give it a try myself.

Now, I’m no Shakespeare or Eliot. The last poetry I wrote resides in my wife’s dresser, written when I was courting her and was less critical. Thank goodness it isn’t shown to anyone. After all, being critical, not creative, is my strong suit. But as I contemplated the attempts out there, a little voice whispered “heck, even I could do better than that!” So here it is.

Here is the Eucharist from the U.S. 1928 BCP, translated into current modern English, following the principles of Liturgiam Authenticam, and using the most up to date ICEL texts, which will be in sync with the next Roman Missal to be issued in English, probably 2010 or so. Because Anglicanism is an international body these days, I have edited the base text in three ways,

  1. By incorporating some features of other national Anglican BCPs (Canada 1962, Scotland 1970, South Africa 1954, West Indies 1959),
  2. By eliminating some of the vague areas that have been patient of heresy, and
  3. By streamlining the whole to make it possible to have a short weekday service for working folk.

I have prepared this text for discussion purposes only, and it has not been authorized for public use by anyone, anywhere. I haven’t even tried it out by myself. "


Saint Michael and All Angels    September 29

O Everlasting God, who hast ordained and constituted the
ministries of angels and men in a wonderful order: Mercifully 
grant that, as thy holy angels always serve and worship thee in 
heaven, so by thy appointment they may help and defend us 
on earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and 
reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever 
and ever. Amen.

Contact Information

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Telephone: 586-264-6044
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