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Highlights from the Charismatic Anglican 2014 Prayer Conference

 


A report from the 2014 Anglican Diocese of the South Intercessory Prayer conference by William De Arteaga. The conference was convened at Holy Cross Anglican Church in Loganville, Georgia, from August 27 – 28, 2014.

 

I had the privilege of speaking and participating in the intercessory prayer conference sponsored by the Anglican Diocese of the South (ADOTS). This is a diocese within the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA). I will describe he conference below, but need first to clarify what ACNA is and how it formed.

The ACNA is made up mostly of ex-Episcopalians who were fed up with the heresy and apostasy of the Episcopal Church. The lamentable state of the Episcopal clergy came about (as with other mainline denominations) because the seminaries accepted de-mythologizing and other liberal theologies as normative. At the same time they increasingly disdained and marginalized the views that the scriptures are true. This implied that the supernatural world pictured in the Bible, as in angels, demons, healing and exorcisms, is also mythological. As liberalism gutted the Gospels and the creeds, what remained were various fashions of psychology and philosophy which were self-labeled as “progressive” theology. This liberal cluster of non-beliefs attached to traditional forms of liturgy, vestments, feast days, etc., and passed itself off as Christianity. The steady, and now, precipitous decline the Episcopal Church and other mainline denominations is the natural result of the triumph of liberal theology over Bible orthodoxy.

But within the Episcopal Church there were many laypersons and clergy who were orthodox, read the scriptures naturally (without de-mythologizing) and who practiced an evangelical faith. This was often combined with the gifts of the Spirit which came into many Episcopal Churches via the ministry of Agnes Sanford and the Charismatic Renewal of the 1960s. The evangelical and Spirit-filled congregations battled to keep the rest of the denomination orthodox. As the 1970s turned into the 1980s it was apparent that the battle was turning against orthodoxy. The Seminaries remained stubbornly liberal and dismissed the Charismatic Renewal as a passing fancy, and continued to churn out apostate or weak-faith clergy.

The 1990s saw many Episcopal clergymen and congregations leave the church into continuing churches. That is, churches which retained the liturgy and Book of Common Prayer as the basis of their worship but separated from the Episcopal church and hierarchy.[1] After 2003, the exodus became a torrent. At that time there was no single entity to receive these orthodox exiles.

When this author left St. Jude’s Episcopal Church in Marietta Georgia, in 2003, with about a third of the congregation, we were received for Episcopal cover by the Anglican Bishop of Bolivia, the Very Rev. Francis Lyons. He was an American missionary, orthodox and highly charismatic. He ultimately took under his wing dozens of exiled congregations. It was understood that this was a temporary and abnormal situation, waiting for a better resolution. Then ACNA was formed under the leadership of Bishop Robert Duncan, from the diocese of Pittsburgh, and the congregations under Bishop Lyons transferred to ACNA. Bishop Lyons subsequently handed over his charge to a Bolivian Anglican bishop, and joined Archbishop Duncan’s staff in Pittsburgh.

 

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Category: Ministry, Summer 2014

About the Author: William L. De Arteaga, Ph.D., is known internationally as a Christian historian and expert on revivals and the rebirth and renewal of the Christian healing movement. His major works include, Quenching the Spirit (Creation House, 1992, 1996), Forgotten Power: The Significance of the Lord’s Supper in Revival (Zondervan, 2002), and Agnes Sanford and Her Companions: The Assault on Cessationism and the Coming of the Charismatic Renewal (Wipf & Stock, 2015). Bill pastored two Hispanic Anglican congregations in the Marietta, Georgia area, and is semi-retired. He and his wife Carolyn continue in their healing, teaching and writing ministries. He is the state chaplain of the Order of St. Luke, encouraging the ministry of healing in all Christian denominations. Facebook AnglicalPentecostal.blogspot.com

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