The Inquirers' Group Lesson 1 An Introduction to the ...

The Inquirers' Group Lesson 1 An Introduction to the ...

The Inquirers Group Lesson 1 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way The wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity. And the fruit of Righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace. James 3:17-18 1 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way The goal of this class is to invite you to the life and community of the Episcopal Church

and this parish. We will explore fundamental beliefs and practices that distinguish our church. In doing that we will draw on the sources Scripture And the Tradition, especially the Prayer Book and the Creeds. 2 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way My hope is that we do this in a way that invites our questions and engages our

hearts and minds. Questions; engaged hearts and minds; together these make up Reason our God given capacity to understand and provide for our life according to our understanding. Wisdom (remember the opening sentence from James) is the fruit of the reverent use of reason. 3 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way And so our method is to study the Churchs

worship, teaching, and life: Based in Scripture; Always using our Reason; Following our Tradition; Seeking Wisdom. 4 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way Our doctrine, discipline, and worship are rooted in the history and practice of the Church of England, both its ancient history and its reformation under the Tudor dynasty in the 1500s:

Henry VIII, and his children Edward VI, Mary I, and Elizabeth I (our hero!). 5 An Introduction to the Episcopal Way While the Tudor monarchs are important, the church was formed through those generations by the work of extraordinary church leaders. We will lift up two: Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1533 1555;

Richard Hooker, a great theologian during the reign of Elizabeth. 6 The Tudor Monarchs The Family that put the Fun back into Dysfunctional. 7 Henry VIII, reigned 1509-1547 Through the crisis of his divorce from Catherine of Aragon, established the Church of England

independent of the jurisdiction of the Pope with himself as supreme head. Ordered an English translation of the Bible to be 8 place in every parish church. And, of course, there were the marriages . . . Married Catherine of Aragon in 1509. Annulled in 1533 1 Child: Mary

Married Jane Seymour in 1536 Dies in childbirth in 1537. 1 Child: Edward Marriage arranged with Anne of Cleves, 1540 Annulled in 1540. Married Catherine Howard in Married Anne Boleyn in 1533.

Annulled in 1536. Anne is executed. 1 Child: Elizabeth 9 1540 Annulled in 1542. Catherine is executed. Married Catherine Parr in 1543. Henry dies in 1547 leaving Catherine a widow. And the Order of Succession is . . .

Edward VI; Mary I; Elizabeth I; Who all die childless. 10 Edward VI, reigned 1547-1553 The Prayer Book is introduced. The first edition in 1549; followed by a revision in 1552. Protestant reforms and teaching are established for the Church of England. 11

Mary I, reigned 1553-1558 Sought to bring the English Church back under Papal jurisdiction. Persecuted and martyred Protestants, 12 including both prominent reformers Thomas Cranmer among others and ordinary people. Elizabeth I, reigned 1558-1603 (to the tune of Roger Ramjet) Elizabeth Tudor, shes our hero; fightin for our salvation. Just go to church and keep the peace, no Tower or Inquisition!

13 Elizabeth I Established the Church of England as a comprehensive national church the Elizabethan Settlement. The settlement seeks a peaceful balance between traditional Catholicism (on the right) and the new Puritans, Calvinist Reformers (on the left). Catholic on the outside; Protestant on the inside. The Church is independent and self-governing, with the monarch as supreme governor. The Prayer Book is reissued in 1559 and remains the standard for worship.

14 Out of our Past Thomas Cranmer & Richard Hooker 15 Thomas Cranmer Born 1489 Enters into Henrys service in 1527; made Archbishop of Canterbury in 1533 at the time of Henrys divorce.

Married in 1532. Prayer Book issued during the reign of Edward VI. First edition, 1549. Second edition, 1552; the second edition is more radically Protestant. Executed by Mary I, 1556. 16 Thomas Cranmer: The Prayer Book Cranmer was deeply influenced by the Reformers, both Luther and Calvin, and he sought to reform the Church and its worship. Worship and teaching were

to be Scriptural and in English! Yet Cranmer drew freely on the tradition and wisdom of the Church; that is, Worship also was to be (and is) the celebration of the Sacraments, especially Baptism and Holy Communion; And the new Book was formed from traditional liturgies. All done with the hope that the Book would unify the Church in its worship. 17 Thomas Cranmer: The Prayer Book All the realm shall have but one use The church gathers for worship; worship

gathers the church. For the Tudors and the Reformers, unity in religion sustained unity in society. To break religious unity was treason. But one use also means: One book, common to every worshiper; Providing all the services the church offers in its worship and draws on at every moment of life. 18 Thomas Cranmer: The Prayer Book Daily Prayer and Scripture Reading The Daily Office;

The Sacraments: Baptism and Holy Eucharist; Marriage and Burial; as well as healing, confession, thanksgiving for the birth of a child . . . Ordination; And, in every edition of the Prayer Book, the complete Psalms. It is pastoral care for the souls of the church. 19 Thomas Cranmer Scripture and the Prayer Book Here is nothing ordained to be read but the very pure word of God, the holy Scriptures, or that which is evidently grounded upon the same.

Prayer Book worship and evangelical preaching proclaim the Gospel. The life and practice of the church are sustained in daily prayer and Scripture reading. The Prayer Book is the witness of Scripture offered as prayer and worship. 20 Thomas Cranmer: Scripture The Prayer Book is formed from the words and witness of scripture. Take the Collect for Purity: Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid Lord, you have searched me out and known me; you

discern my thoughts from afar; indeed there is not a word on my lips, but you, O Lord, know it altogether. Psalm 139:1, 3 Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:11 that we may worthily magnify your holy Name Let us magnify his Name together. 21 Psalm 34:3 (BCP, 1928)

Thomas Cranmer: Scripture A beautiful prayer, written by Cranmer, captures in a sentence both how to read Scripture and what it teaches us. Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, That we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ; Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen. 22

Thomas Cranmer: Scripture Stay with that prayer for a moment. Read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest We Ruminate and, yes, thats a cow chewing its cud. Not a flattering image for Meditation but a good one we take Scripture in slowly, open to its possibilities, to the word as we hear it in our hearts; we engage it heart, mind, and soul. That we may embrace and hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life All scripture is a witness to the work of God in Christ for us;

We engage it as, first and last, the word of promise and hope. 23 Thomas Cranmer Martyr And now I come to the great thing that so much troubleth my conscience more than any thing that ever I did or said in my whole life; and that is the setting abroad of writings contrary to the truth; which now here I renounce and refuse, as things written for fear of death, and to save

my life. And forasmuch as my hand offended, writing contrary to my heart, my hand shall first be punished therefore; for, may I come to the fire, it shall be first burned. 24 Thomas Cranmer Richard Hooker Born 1554. Ordained priest 1579; married Jean Churchman, 1581.

The couple had six children; only two survived past 21. Master of the Temple Church in London, 1585. Serves Salisbury Cathedral and various parishes until his death in 1600. Of the Lawes of Ecclesiastical Polity published beginning in 1594. In an age of bitter and violent controversies, Hooker is practical, tolerant, respectful, and, most of all, peaceful.

25 Richard Hooker Scripture, Reason, and Tradition Hooker believes that the Church looks to three sources of authority. Scripture is first, but it points beyond itself to: The one God who is our source and beginning, the light by which we see light; The presence and love of Christ. The interpretation of Scripture is the work of Reason. Our God-given ability to understand and provide;

Scripture must never be used to destroy reason. Our understanding of the witness of Scripture comes from Tradition. 26 Richard Hooker Scripture, Reason, and Tradition There is in the world no kind of knowledge, whereby any part of truth is seen, but we justly account it precious . . . To detract from the dignity thereof were to injure God himself, who being that light which none can approach unto, hath sent out these lights whereof we are

capable, even as so many sparkles resembling the bright fountain from which they rise. Richard Hooker This gentle, open-minded wisdom was born of a deeper commitment 27 Richard Hooker Life Together The Church participates in the life of Christ; Christ lives in us and through us. We participate in Christ through the Worship and Sacraments of the Church especially Baptism and Eucharist.

This is real, lived, and everyday. It involves us heart and soul; mind and body. Life in Christ calls forth love and answers to love. The Christian life is lived in community. A worshiping congregation, participating in Christ in the sacraments and in fellowship, is good enough. There is no perfect church. 28 Richard Hooker Life Together What we think is important; yet we must not think we possess the truth. The light of truth, wherever we find it, witnesses to the one God who is light and truth;

And the reality of God in our hearts and lives is greater than our words or ideas. The wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace. 29 And so what does this mean for us? 30 Well . . .

We learn from Cranmer To gather for worship, as worship gathers the church; To engage Scripture; To let the tradition of the Church most of all Cranmers book! guide and form us. And we learn from Hooker The gifts of Scripture, Reason, and Tradition; Shared participation in Christs life; Lived in our ordinary life and communities; 31 And. . . We learn from both Cranmer and Hooker

To seek God in all things* (Although the quote is actually taken from St. Ignatius of Loyola, a Spanish Catholic and the founder of the Jesuit order) 32 As an Episcopal parish, then, we hope to be . . . Always Scripture and the Gospel in worship; in 33

what is taught; in our work; The Church of the Prayer Book gathered in worship; reverent; Participants in Christs ministry, serving Christ in one another with love; Hopeful; Caring for our community; Respectful; ready to listen and learn; honest about our questions and doubts; willing to work with our minds and reach understanding; respecting each others good conscience; Mature in that freedom; Seeking education; Nurturing of spiritual and personal growth; Practicing regular, daily prayer.

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