On behalf of the American Anglican Council I congratulate the Diocese of South Carolina —their Bishop +Mark Lawrence, assisting Bishops +Fitz Allison, +Alex Dickson and +Alden Hathaway, their clergy and all members of the Diocese —on their unanimous decision in both the clergy and lay order of Convention to affiliate with the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA). We could not agree more with Bishop Lawrence’s observation on one key reason they are choosing to affiliate with this new Anglican Province:
“The entire Anglican world has been in disarray since (The Episcopal Church) and the Anglican Church of Canada took unprecedented actions in 2003, tearing the fabric of the Anglican Communion. Unfortunately, the unravelling has continued through the last decade and to date none of the four historic Instruments of Unity have been able to mend the net nor to exercise godly authority. The future within Anglicanism now appears to lie with alignments of relationship and gospel mission rather than hierarchal solutions. Our brothers and sisters in the ACNA are partners “with whom we can stand in one spirit, with one mind, striving side by side for the faith of the gospel.” (Phil 1:27)
We at the American Anglican Council look forward to the talents the Diocese of South Carolina will bring to the ACNA—in scholarship, in youth ministries, and in so many other ways. We also look forward to the ways in which the ACNA, and ministries like the American Anglican Council, can help the Diocese of South Carolina in its mission of making Biblical Anglicans for a Global age and helping to shape emerging Anglicanism in the 21st Century.
We rejoice in the words of the Psalmist who wrote:
“How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down upon the collar of his robes. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mt. Zion. For their the LORD bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.” (Psalm 133)
May that blessing continue to run, and may the LORD continue to bestow his blessing, as we walk together as one, united Biblical, missional and Anglican province in North America!
The Rev. Canon J. Philip Ashey is President and CEO, American Anglican Council