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Real life stories of how the American Anglican Council has helped orthodox Anglicans in their ministry and witness.
Mrs. Liz Forman
"When do we go? Where do we go?" Those thoughts kept racing through my mind. The steady decline of the Episcopal Church was rapidly accelerating. I was a lifelong Episcopalian, and my husband, who was raised Roman Catholic, had been worshipping with me in the Episcopal Church for our entire married life. Our daughters were baptized Episcopalians and were being raised in a parish that had always been "home."
Sadly, the church where we were faithful members had gradually stopped talking about Jesus the Christ....preferring to focus instead on "the historic Jesus." We were struggling to be witnesses in a church that no longer wanted to talk about Biblical orthodoxy or, more especially, the travesties occurring in the larger Episcopal Church. As a family we wanted to stand firm in the faith that had come down through the ages...but where could we find a church that was liturgical, sacramental, and, most importantly, scriptural? "How do we leave all that we have known for years to truly follow Him?" Our answer was the American Anglican Council. I had heard of the American Anglican Council, but because our former church would have nothing to do with them, I took it upon myself to find out more. Using their incredible website, I was able to find two orthodox parishes in our area that were affiliated with the American Anglican Council ....one very close to where we lived. Our first Sunday visit revealed to us that it was the place the Lord wanted our family....and I was convinced then, as I am now, that the AAC seal was the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval for orthodoxy.
As time has gone by I have been so blessed to be associated with the American Anglican Council on a personal level, from receiving the insightful weekly email updates to being a regular donor. I even attended the Blueprint for the New Church Conference on evangelism, discipleship and mission in Loganville, Georgia in March 2009. The national and international leaders I met at this conference became personal friends and have continued to be a source of constant inspiration. Recently, my family has made one more step along His road. Four years ago the Lord blessed us by leading us to an AAC affiliated Episcopal parish that was a "sending" church. That blessing has equipped us to answer His call to go and help build a strong Anglican Church in North America presence in the greater Richmond, Virginia area. My family looks forward to a bright and shining future for Anglicanism in Richmond as we put into practice all that we have learned through the American Anglican Council. Our Heavenly Father calls His people to be "encouragers," and the American Anglican Council has certainly answered the call!
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing." I Thessalonians 5:11
Liz Forman and her family live in Virginia, where for many years they were members of The Episcopal Church. Recently, her family left The Episcopal Church and joined an Anglican Church in North America congregation.
The Rev. Roger Weber
When I think of the dramatic events of our lives over the last three months, as many of the people of St. Mark's Episcopal Church made the journey from The Episcopal Church to form Christ the King Anglican Church Albuquerque, a new parish in the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA), I am so grateful for the support, wise counsel and prayers of The American Anglican Council and in particular Phil Ashey, (Chief Operating Officer of the American Anglican Council).
As we went through the transition, and all the fearful uncertainties, I was so grateful to have Phil to talk through what to do and say; how to do it; to hear of lessons learned by other parishes in our situations; and most of all to have someone to pray with, and someone to pray for me. Thank you, Phil and the American Anglican Council!
I thought of the Apostle Paul's wonderful command / observation to the Galatian Christians to "Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." While Paul is addressing brothers and sisters who are struggling with sin, it seems appropriate that the action of burden sharing is appropriate for any situation where oppression, whether internal or external, exists. Eugene Peterson's translation in the Message broadens it beautifully "Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ's law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived."
The people of Christ the King and I thank God that the American Anglican Council and Phil Ashey were not "too good for that!!" Thank you for "stooping down and reaching out!" Thank you for being law fulfillers! Thank you for helping us to carry the burdens. God bless you as you carry others and let us know how we can help do the same.
Father Roger Weber is the rector of Christ the King Anglican Church in Alburquerque, New Mexico.
The Most Rev. Henry Luke Orombi
The foundation for the Church of Uganda has always been the Word of God. When the missionaries came in 1877, they brought to us the transforming Word of God that changed our lives, families, and communities in so many ways. The martyrs of Uganda preferred to die rather than disobey the Word of God. The East African Revival made the Word of God very practical in daily living, thus bringing peace and reconciliation to traditional enemies, freeing women from oppressive superstitions, and infusing people with hope for a better future. Equipped only with the Bible, Ugandan evangelists set out on foot to share the Good News of Jesus Christ throughout the country and beyond, thus laying the foundation for the second largest Province today in the Anglican Communion.
The American Anglican Council represents these same convictions, and we are very grateful for their practical ministry in America and their service to the wider Communion. For the more than 50 congregations that appealed to me to come under the ecclesiastical oversight of the Church of Uganda, I am aware of significant support provided to them from the AAC. Thank you!
I am sure the AAC worked tirelessly with the leaders of the new Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) to see that the new Province was ready to be born, and ready to receive our American congregations. Our oversight of churches in America was only a temporary measure until the church in America was stable enough for us to repatriate our congregations back to their home country. Thank you!
The AAC was a tremendous source of support for the GAFCON Primates in helping us realize our dream of a Global Anglican Future Conference in Jerusalem in June 2008. There were only six months from conception to reality for the conference, and it was only possible because of people like the AAC who worked with us to make our dream come true. We are very grateful for the AAC's role and support in helping to make GAFCON not just a dream, but a reality.
Finally, may I thank the AAC for their quick response to our recent appeal for famine support. They have used their communications network to make our need known, received funds on our behalf, and forwarded them to us in a timely fashion. Their ministry has literally saved lives! It is a practical ministry and one which demonstrates that faith without works is dead.
For all these reasons, and more, I commend the work of the American Anglican Council, its leaders and staff, for your prayers and generous support.
Archbishop Orombi is the leader of the Anglican Church of Uganda, one of the Anglican Communion's largest provinces.