Monday, September 21, 2009

In the Footsteps of Tikhon and Grafton

"In the Footsteps of Tikhon and Grafton" — Nashotah House to Host Anglican-Orthodox Ecumenical Conference with St. Vladimir's Orthodox Seminary
Partnership between two schools marks new step in ecumenical relations

Nashotah, WI, September 1, 2009 – An ecumenical conference between scholars of the Anglican and Eastern Orthodox traditions will be held at Nashotah House Theological Seminary on October 8-10, 2009. Entitled “In the Footsteps of Tikhon and Grafton - Anglican and Orthodox Identity, Ministry and Mission in the 21th Century,” the Anglican-Orthodox Conference will feature discussions and addresses by representatives of Nashotah House and St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in Yonkers, NY, together with several worship services representing the spiritual riches of both traditions. The conference will conclude with the signing of a “Covenant Partnership,” pledging continued prayer, fellowship and ecumenical cooperation between the two schools.

Speakers will include the His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah, Orthodox Metropolitan of All America and Canada, who is President of the St. Vladimir’s Board of Trustees, and the Very Rev. Chad Hatfield, an alumnus of Nashotah House who is now Chancellor of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. The Conference is free and open to the public but advance registration is required. For more information, telephone Fr. Steve Schlossberg, Director of Communications, at (262) 646-6506.

“St. Vladimir's Seminary is committed to working out a new relationship with Nashotah House that honors our common legacy and heritage,” says Fr. Hatfield. “Together we can take the work and witness or our forefathers and reclaim the voice of Christian orthodoxy that this world is starving to hear once again. Not to do so would be to fail to build upon the foundations of both seminaries and the two traditions that they represent. Now is the time to act boldly, and together we will in common witness to the truth of the Gospel of our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ. May it be blessed.”

The Very Rev. Dr. Robert S. Munday, Dean and President of Nashotah House expressed his conviction that this new relationship between the two seminaries “is an important step in furthering a renewal of Anglican—Orthodox ecumenical dialogue, which is the oldest ecumenical dialogue between Christian traditions." Dean Munday added, "It is particularly appropriate that Nashotah House should resume the ecumenical efforts begun over 100 years ago by Bishop Charles Grafton (2nd Bishop of Fond du Lac and Chairman of the Nashotah House Board of Trustees) and Saint Tikhon of Moscow (who was archbishop of the Orthodox Church in America, and who was made an honorary Doctor of Divinity by Nashotah House in 1905, later becoming Patriarch of Moscow and head of the Russian Orthodox Church)."

Bishop Frederick Fick, MSJ will be attending this conference on behalf of the Society.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Bishop Keith Ackerman, FiFNA, Visits With Texas MSJ Chapter

+ Keith Ackerman spent a bit over three hours with the Texas Chapter at Holy Trinity Church in Hurst on Saturday, 19 September. During that time, Bishop Ackerman spoke frankly and personally to our questions, questions which are shared by many people. He acknowledged that there are flaws in the ACNA, but that this is the group that God has given us to work His will through, and that the ACNA is of an open mind, especially to the Anglo-Catholic mind.

He spoke of his great joy in visiting with evangelical Anglicans around the world and demonstrating to them that their views were actually the historic Anglo-Catholic views, while dismantling the caricatures built up regarding Anglo-Catholics as more interested in Mary than in mission and the spread of the Gospel in Christ Jesus. He said that his one of greatest moments of joy in dialogue were when J.I Packer said, after one of Bishop Ackerman’s presentations, “Well, if anyone had told me twenty years ago that I would be agreeing with the Anglo-Catholic position on anything, I would have laughed in his face. Today, I find that I agree to the point of calling myself an Evangelical Catholic.”

Bishop Ackerman also spoke of the great strides made in ecumenical progress with the Orthodox, especially the Orthodox Church of America, and of his hopes for the Nashotah House conference. “We are close, very close, to having an understanding which will lead to a deeper relationship.” He also spoke of the extraordinary flexibility regarding the new FiF-NA Diocese of All Saints, in accepting groups who are Anglo-papalist, Anglo-Orthodox, classic English High Church, Oxford Movement High Church, as well as making provision for various societies and religious orders under its umbrella.

Finally, he spoke of practicalities, of the sharing of ministries and talents among Anglo-Catholics and with others in the ACNA. He spoke of his own desire to celebrate and preach at Holy Trinity, and was overjoyed when Fr. Bob assured him that Bishop Fick has already given his blessing to do so. He is scheduled to speak to our cluster again on a Saturday late in November on the topic of pastoral counseling and then he will indeed preach and preside at Holy Trinity’s altar the next day.

The meeting ended with the clergy anointing and praying for his steady improvement in health and ministry, and his episcopal blessing upon us. The entire visit was truly a blessing and each man returned to his home parish refreshed and encouraged.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Dates Set For Society Annual Gathering

The Missionary Society of St John (FiF-NA) will hold its annual gathering in Hurst, (Dallas-Ft.Worth) Texas, October 25 thru October 27. Worship and most other activities will be held at Holy Trinity Anglican Church. You may visit the parish's website here:

Clergy and Lay delegates are urged to secure housing arrangements in advance. Full details will be provided. Contact Fr. Bob Tomlinson by using Holy Trinity's website contact information. As our host, Fr. Bob will be able to provide direct, pertinent and timely information.

All Anglicans and all interested people are most welcome to share in the inspiring time of prayer, worship, work and fellowship with the hospitality of the M.S.J.

Contact Information

11195 S. Grayling Rd.
Roscommon, MI 48653

Telephone: 586-264-6044
msjanglican "at"