posted Sep 28, 2012, 10:48 AM by SEWAAC Webmaster
updated Sep 28, 2012, 10:49 AM
On August 29, over 150 people from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Illinois gathered to
worship and pray for unity for the sake of mission and for a diocese
that is part of a revival of Word and Sacrament in the midwest. This was the fourth in a series of unity events as Anglicans from the Upper Midwest have come together to explore what we can do as we are unified in ministry and mission.
Author Lisa Traylor, from the Wheaton area, commented on the significance of these events:
At the first Unity meeting in Minnesota,
there was a movement of healing and reconciliation among the deans.
Dean Munday prayed that we might be “perpetually pregnant with new
churches.” They were then able to articulate a unified theological
platform as the basis of a diocese. At the Wisconsin meeting at Nashotah House,
Fr. Stewart preached about it being a Joshua moment of going forward
into the promised land, and uttered the phrase “Wouldn’t it be amazing
if the word ‘diocese’ became synonymous with ‘revival’?”
Fr. Christian delivered a message on I Corinthians 13, on love, and
love was practiced in embracing our Hispanic brothers and sisters in the
city. Last week in Wheaton, Fr. William preached about the unity that is already coming about.
You can see the movement of God in these sermons, but even more
remarkable is the sense we got in the services of the rightness of not
only the formation of a diocese and the birth of a common vision, but
the birth of unity itself. I attended both the Nashotah House and Wheaton
events and can tell you—we are truly all one church! We have one Lord,
one faith, one baptism, one Spirit who does the work of uniting us
together to work together for the purposes of God not only for
ourselves, but for the sake of others.
It is clear that our mission as a diocese has something to do with
spreading the Gospel. The Deans had several people present at the
service last Wednesday share prophetic words they had received. Some of these words had
to do with mission: not only loving the lost, but liking them
and to be salt and light; the other two words had to do with unity: a
reminder to “lift holy hands without dispute” (I Timothy 2) and that
Christ’s own weakness is his glory and our unity—the partaking of the
broken bread of his body.
I think we have some tantalizing clues about what the Lord has for us
all together in the future. Commit to pray, seek, ask, and dream about
what the Lord is doing here. Talk to your church friends about it, let
your church leaders know your thoughts. And whenever you can, visit one
of the churches that are a part of the pre-diocese-in-formation. Worship
with them, and let the Holy Spirit and the presence of Christ make you a
part of their church, just as well are all a part of One Church.
You can read the rest of Lisa Traylor's remarks as well as more about the unity events on the Midwest Anglican website.