Leaders from the Anglican Church in North America and the Anglican Mission recently met in Atlanta, Georgia, to take steps towards personal reconciliation.
From Archbishop Beach
Dear Anglican Church in North America Family:
During the past six months, leaders from the Anglican Church in North America and the Anglican Mission have met for two days of discussions and talks. It has been a fascinating, enlightening, humbling, and challenging time for those of us involved in these discussions.
We have found that as we have talked, “old tapes” began to surface of experiences where we had been wronged, hurt, and misunderstood. These old tapes brought forth the need for humility, confession, repentance, and forgiveness before the Lord. It has been difficult, yet SO healing in many ways.
Below is a statement about our last meeting.
It occurred to me that this would be a good time to remind all of us of our need to examine our own hearts, and the relationships with people with whom we find that we have issues. When the Lord brings those people to mind, it is important to go to them and seek healing of the relationships. I have found in my own life and ministry that it is so easy to get busy ministering and living life that I can “park” those relationship-issues on a shelf only to have them resurface when I see the person or hear about the person. This seems to happen alot in families during the Advent and Christmas season. Rather than remaining in one’s hurt and resentment (like we are tempted to do), why not go to the person and seek to make the relationship right? Isn’t this what Jesus would want us to do (Matthew 18)?
I have been encouraged by the fruit of our discussions with the leaders of the Anglican Mission and hope our example can serve to motivate you to reach out to those with whom you need to be reconciled. While we have no idea where these discussions will lead, we do know that Jesus is pleased when relationships can be healed. This is true in one’s personal and professional relationships as well.
Your brother in Christ,
The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach
Archbishop and Primate
Anglican Church in North America
“Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” ~ ¬¬Philippians 2: 1-5
Leaders from the Anglican Church in North America and The Anglican Mission came together on December 15, 2015, in Atlanta, Georgia, facilitated by Bishop Trevor Walters.
We have come together in the Spirit and mind of Jesus Christ, and in humility to acknowledge the ways we have dishonored and wounded each other in the past. As a result of our meeting we are committed to being reconciled with each other personally, face to face, and in keeping with our Lord’s command in Matthew 18; corporately fostering Biblical reconciliation. To this end we commit to:
- Always think and speak positively about each other in Christ
- Pray and bless each others’ churches and clergy in their ministries
- Look for ways to partner and assist each other in our Gospel mission
- Encourage one another to forgive in any way we have been wronged and seek reconciliation as a Gospel imperative
As leaders of the Anglican Mission we commend the Anglican Church in North America in their work in forming one, united, Biblical, missional Anglican Province in North America. Likewise, as leaders of the Anglican Church in North America, we commend the Anglican Mission in its focus on the evangelistic work of planting churches, and raising up entrepreneurial leaders for Gospel mission in North America. Though we have differences in our structures, we share a common focus on evangelism, church planting, and mission. We are committed to continue to meet and work together for reconciliation and the cause of Christ in North America.
Archbishop Foley Beach (ACNA) Bishop Philip Jones (AM)
Bishop Bill Atwood (ACNA) Bishop Sandy Greene (AM)
Canon Phil Ashey (ACNA) Rev. Allen Hughes (AM)