Bladensburg Call to Catholic Faith and Order

David Virtue DVirtue236 at AOL.COM
Sun May 13 22:22:09 EDT 2001


Bladensburg Call to Catholic Faith and Order

Preamble

Celebrating the risen Christ, at St. Luke's Episcopal Church
Bladensburg, Maryland on May 12, 2001, we bear witness to the historic
faith and order of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church of Our
Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We call upon all loyal Anglicans to join
us in supporting one another in the defense of our Catholic
inheritance, no matter what opposition we may encounter from official
bodies or appointed leaders within our churches, and at whatever
personal cost may be required of us. Appreciating our tradition of
diversity in unity, we pray that all loyal Anglicans may publicly
embrace the fullness of Catholic faith and order, remembering that the
opposite of Catholic is neither Protestant nor Evangelical but
Heretical.

We affirm that as Anglicans we have no faith of our own.

Happily recalling Archbishop Fisher's declaration that Anglicans have
only the Faith of the Catholic Church enshrined in the Catholic Creeds,
we reaffirm with him that authentic Anglicanism seeks only to be the
Church of the Fathers and of the undivided Councils.

 We affirm that all churches within the Anglican tradition of  faith
and order ought to regard themselves true provinces and local
embodiments of the Catholic Church. Faithfulness to this tradition is
witnessed by reverence for Holy Scripture as the unalterable standard
of revealed truth, orthodox teaching, the apostolic ministry and the
celebration of the two dominical sacraments as "necessary for
salvation" together with those five others which have been universally
accepted by the Catholic Churches throughout the ages. As such, our
chief standard of Christian faith is the Vincentian Canon, the common
tradition of the Church, which has been believed by Catholic
Christians, "everywhere, always and by everyone."

We declare that churches within the Anglican tradition have neither the
authority nor the power to change the commonly accepted faith and order
of the Church.

As provinces of the whole Catholic Church, we dare not deviate from nor
make any innovations to the church's faith and order which contradict
the clear teaching of scripture, repudiate the traditional faith and
practice of the undivided church, or ignore the commonly accepted
practices of the vast majority of contemporary Christians both East and
West, and that those who make such fundamental changes or support them
remove themselves from the full communion of the Catholic Church. By
acting and teaching in ways that are heretical and schismatic, no
matter what their particular ecclesiastical allegiance may happen to
be, they create a state of impaired communion with other Anglicans.
This is especially true of those who have been given the apostolic
responsibility of proclaiming the faith once delivered to the saints,
recalling also that according to Anglican tradition official
pronouncements and laws of any provincial church are only valid so long
as they guard and enhance the authentic and historic teaching of the
Church Catholic.

 We pray for a renewed Anglican participation in restoring the visible
unity of the Catholic Church.

We rejoice in the signs of a closer relationship between Eastern and
Western Christians, furthered by the Pope's recent apology for the past
sins of Western Catholics and in like manner we urge our Anglican
leaders to ask forgiveness for our own past sins of arrogance and
indifference towards the faith and order of Catholic Christians, both
East and West.

END




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