Some Parishes find ways to form Anglican links abroad

Posted by Kendall Harmon

As they professed their faith, Hector Zavala, Anglican bishop of the Diocese of Chile, laid his hands on the heads of three young people yesterday and welcomed them into his flock.

The cleric, wearing vestments decorated with indigenous patterns and the Chilean national flower, was leading the first confirmation ceremony at his mission church in the United States - whose congregation worships in the heart of Baltimore County's Green Spring Valley.

The Church of the Resurrection is one of many in the United States forming relationships with foreign bishops after growing increasingly dissatisfied with the perceived liberal direction of the Episcopal Church, the U.S. arm of the international Anglican Communion.

For several Resurrection members, the 2003 election of the Rev. V. Gene Robinson, who is openly gay, as bishop of New Hampshire was a recent - but not the only - evidence of a church straying from biblical values and truths.

Reisterstown resident Vince Clews, a founding member of Church of the Resurrection, said its formation after Robinson's election may imply homophobia but had more to do with public statements by Episcopal bishops who don't believe in tenets such as the divinity of Jesus, his resurrection or virgin birth.

"I left because the idea of a bishop or priest saying the Nicene Creed or Apostles Creed as they do every Sunday and not believing half of what they're saying ... makes no sense to me," said Clews, a freelance writer. "That is not worship. That is being led by a liar."

Many of the overseas dioceses were once a destination for mission workers, and money, from American parishes. "Those who were missionized are in a sense launching missions of their own," said David Hein, a Hood College religion professor and author of the book The Episcopalians.

Resurrection, whose congregation worships at the historic Rainbow Hill mansion in the 10700 block of Park Heights Avenue near Stevenson, is the northernmost outpost of its South American diocese. Its pastor, the Rev. Eliot Winks, was ordained at a Pittsburgh ceremony in 2005 by the bishop of the Diocese of Bolivia on behalf of Zavala.

Zavala said his diocese's pastoral support of the Baltimore County mission church is part of a temporary solution to support parishes whose members feel disenfranchised by the Episcopal Church.

"From our point of view, belonging to a wider community, we want them to continue being Anglicans," Zavala said after yesterday's confirmation service - held on Pentecost Sunday, which Christians celebrate as the day the apostles received the Holy Spirit. "The way to do this is through us, while we resolve the tensions in the Anglican Communion."

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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal- Anglican: Latest NewsEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC Conflicts

6 Comments
Posted May 28, 2007 at 2:13 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. TomRightmyer wrote:

Resurrection, Baltimore, includes some former members of St. John’s, Western Run Parish, near Glyndon, MD. My father, the Rev. Dr. Nelson Rightmyer, served there 1952-66, and that parish sponsored me for ordination. The Rev. Phil Roulette, one of the authors of the Baltimore Declaration, served St. John’s and from what I can gather from the parish’s publications when he retired there was some conflict over the direction of the church. The Rev. Chip Nix was interim, but it appears that the majority of the parish decided to follow the general direction set by Bishop Ihlof and the majority of the bishops and clergy and lay deputies to General Convention 2003. The minority, with others, formed Resurrection, Baltimore, now in the Diocese of Chile. 

    There are two other Resurrection churches in the Baltimore area. One is in East Baltimore. The rector during World War II when the area included a number of people from the South come to work in some of the war industries used to visit with a King James version bible (all we had then) under his arm and introduce himself by saying, “I represent the people who wrote this book.”

    The other is Resurrection, Copley Parish, Joppa, MD, just over the Harford County line off Rt. 40. I served there 1968-74.

    Tom Rightmyer in Asheville, NC

May 28, 6:08 pm | [comment link]
2. robroy wrote:

Dear Tom, there is a church who statistics are here listed as Resurrection Episcopal, Baltimore with a whopping ASA between 15 and 20. I jumped from 15 in 2004 to 20 in 2005, but that might be the Christmas effect. Is that the remnant of the Church that went to Chile? Could someone help me out? I couldn’t load up the article, but is the province of Chile actually the southern Cone led by the illustrious ABp Venables?

May 28, 7:16 pm | [comment link]
3. robroy wrote:

Should read: Is the diocese of Chile part of the Southern Cone province led by the illustrious ABp Venables?

May 28, 7:25 pm | [comment link]
4. Gregory wrote:

Dear robroy,
Yes, it is.

May 29, 8:40 am | [comment link]
5. JohnA wrote:

Robroy, the Resurrction that the paper is talking about is a parish that is only two years old and was never a part of the Dio. of Maryland.  The bishop has visited us twice and our clergy has been to Chile for the dio. convention and clergy conferences for the past two years.  We are a growing parish.

May 29, 8:44 am | [comment link]
6. robroy wrote:

Gregory and JohnA, thanks. And to the growing Resurrection Anglican Church of Baltimore, The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

May 29, 9:47 am | [comment link]
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