In just three months, the Anglican Church in North America has welcomed 39 new congregations. When the Anglican Church in North America officially launched in late June, it included 703 churches in the United States and Canada. Today, there are 742 congregations affiliated with the Anglican Church.
â€œWe have an ambitious goal of planting 1,000 new churches in the next five years. It is very encouraging to see how much progress has already been made,â€ said Archbishop Robert Duncan.
Some congregations have joined the Anglican Church in North America with a well-defined identity and history. Christ the King Anglican Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico, represents the leadership and a large majority of the people of an Episcopal Church parish. The congregation, which walked away from property and endowments valued at more than $2 million, has been in the words of its rector, the Rev. Roger Weber, â€œoverwhelmed by Godâ€™s provision.â€
When the people of Christ the King made their decision to step out of the conflicts in the Episcopal Church over basic Christian beliefs, they did not know where they would meet for worship. Within a period of weeks, God provided an 18,000 square foot church building with enough seating for their average Sunday attendance of 300 and complete with office equipment â€œall for an incredibly reasonable price,â€ said Weber.
Weber added that Christ the King has also spiritually benefited from their decision to leave the conflicts of The Episcopal Church behind. â€œBeing free of it is like being one-thousand pounds lighter. There is just a joyous, grateful spirit, amazement about what God has done and a real looking forward to great things,â€ he explained.
A number of the new congregations are recent church plants, like St. Barnabas in Covington, Kentucky. According to Fr. Christopher Peterson, who leads St. Barnabas, the young church held its first worship service on June 7. Just a few months into their life, St. Barnabas has already benefited greatly from its relationship with other Anglican Church in North America congregations in Kentucky, said Peterson. He and other members of the launch team have also been amazed by the way God has sent people to St. Barnabas. â€œIt is not like we have found a lot of people, but that people have found us. It is astounding,â€ said Peterson.
More information about St. Barnabas is available online at http://www.kentuckyanglican.com
Calling together new congregations is a key goal for The Anglican Church in North America. â€œWe are convinced that the Good News of Jesus Christ and the transforming power of His love offer life-change wherever they are preached. Vibrant, multiplying local congregations are both the primary tool to fulfill that important evangelical task and the natural result of our friends and neighbors responding to the Gospel,â€ said Archbishop Duncan.
Formed in June of 2009, the Anglican Church in North America unites 742 Anglican congregations into a single Anglican Province. The churchâ€™s mission is to reach North America with the Transforming Love of Jesus Christ.