Holy Week 2009
This week we remember the amazing journey from Gethsemane to Calvary and to the Empty Tomb. It is the most dramatic journey of all time! It changed human history and it changed your life and mine. It also reminds us that we are part of something much bigger than ourselves. As Anglicans we have always recognized that each believer and each local congregation is part of a much larger community. We don't just need each other, we are part of each other — we are, after all, the Body of Christ.
The Body of Christ
This is why CANA has invested so much time and effort in the building up of the emerging North American province. As Bishop Bob Duncan says, this is not exciting work, but it is work that demonstrates that our orthodox Anglican movement is united by Christ. Please be in prayer for the ACNA's April Council and the June Assembly meetings hosted by Bishop Jack Iker in Fort Worth, Texas. This work towards common governance will support and sustain our common worship and common mission that CANA shares with all our Common Cause partners. This is a historic year for all of us as we continue to make significant progress towards unifying our witness to Christ's good news of radical inclusion, profound transformation, and inspired service.
Palm Sunday marked the official launch of two new congregations: Restoration in Arlington, Virginia — the newest church plant by The Falls Church; and St George's Anglican Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado . St George's was founded by the majority of the congregation called Grace & St Stephen's which lost its legal battle with The Episcopal Church (TEC) and the TEC Diocese of Colorado. While we are of course disappointed, we rejoice that St George's has been able to find a wonderful new location for worship where they held their Palm Sunday services. (A copy of my letter to them on this special occasion can be found on the CANA website, under the News section.)
In the midst of challenging times, it is a special joy to recall that Holy Tuesday this week marked the 4th anniversary of CANA's founding. It is also a special joy to announce that our Lord continues to add to our number. In recent weeks we have welcomed the following five congregations from five different states: Coventry, Alabaster AL; Christ Church, Baltimore MD; St Stephens, Tullahoma TN; Holy Trinity, North Augusta SC; and St Edmunds, Elm Grove WI.
I am also delighted that Thomas Sweeney was ordained a deacon on March 29, 2009 at Church of the Messiah, Chesapeake VA, and that we anticipate more than five new deacons and priests to be ordained between Maine and New Mexico by the time CANA's Council convenes in late July. Please pray for all of these congregations, clergy, and postulants as they seek to be faithful to our Lord's call.
Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he as crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Missionary Bishop of CANA