For the Church
O GRACIOUS Father, we humbly beseech thee for thy holy Catholic Church; that thou wouldst be pleased to fill it with all truth, in all peace. Where it is corrupt, purify it; where it is in error, direct it; where in anything it is amiss, reform it. Where it is right, establish it; where it is in want, provide for it; where it is divided, reunite it; for the sake of him who died and rose again, and ever liveth to make intercession for us, Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord. Amen.
The Prayer for the Church originates from “A Summarie of Devotions,” written by Archbishop William Laud and first published in 1667. The prayer appeared in the American Prayer Book in the 1928 edition. It is among my favorite prayers, and I ask each of you to pray it as well.
When you pray, realize that Church is “Holy” because God calls it, sets it apart for His purposes, and fills it with the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In the prayer, the term “Catholic” applies to the Church as a whole, as the Body of Christ, and not in reference to a particular denominational portion of the Church.
I know that God hears our prayer and answers them, even regarding the Church. It is easy to find areas where the Church is in schism, and even heterodox, however, God appears to be pulling Orthodox Anglican Churches closer together.
Over the years, I’ve watched the APA and Reformed Episcopal Church (REC) cooperate. The REC administers the APA Clergy Pension Plan. REC Seminary in Philadelphia offers education tuition free to Anglican Postulants and Candidates.
In the last couple years, the APA and the Anglican Church in America (ACA) have moved closer to intercommunion. The APA now administers a Theological School, Logos House of Theological Studies, a school begun by the ACA but now serving the APA and ACA alike. Fr. William Martin, and APA priest, serves as the Academic Dean of Logos House.
If that were not enough, the ACC, APA, ACA, and the Diocese of the Holy Cross, all Orthodox Anglican jurisdictions, plan concurrent Synods in October 2017. St. Barnabus Anglican Church in Dunwoody, GA will host the APA Provincial Synod. God is moving to bring His Church together. God hears your prayers, and I encourage you to keep praying “For the Church.”