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Out of the Depths We Cry
VirtueOnline-News ^ | 3/13/2004 | +Robinson Cavalcanti

Posted on 03/14/2005 7:57:27 AM PST by sionnsar

[A sermon by Robinson Cavalcanti Diocesan Bishop of Recife, Brazil, delivered Sunday in Florida.]

Dear brothers and sisters,

May the Grace and Peace of the Lord be with you!

Warm Greetings from the Diocese of Recife, in Northeast Brazil. It is a real pleasure to be here this morning for this moment of worship, for this celebration of the Wod and the Sacraments. It is, also, an honor for me to your bishop. It is something new, unusual, different, but I am convinced that happens under God's Providence. We are part of the One and Universal Church. We are part of the same flock. And the bishop is called to be a shepherd not only for his local people, but to the Universal Church. We are part of the same body. Spread over the entire world, under Jesus Christ's leadership. Today, with the crisis that affects the Church, the boundaries are not mainly geographical, but confessional and affectional. It is not geography that unites or separates the formal members of the Church, but the faith and the confession of the Revelation, based in the Holy Scripture and received by the Tradition of the Apostles.

The authorities of the Church are insisting on the formalities, in the external matters, in the legal procedures, but the reality is that those things are not central, are not essential. The Cross of Christ is the Center. The Words of Christ is the center. The demands of Christ is the center. We are today just a week from Holy Week. We are following the steps of Christ, listening to His message, watching his miracles on the way to the Cross, but also on the way to the empty grave. We suffer as His body, we suffer the worst martyrdom that is the one perpetrated by the religious authorities against the believers.

Out of the depths we cry: "O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy." We put our hope in the Lord, in his unfailing love and in his full redemption.

We look to the materialist and secularized Western World, we look to the message of revisionism preached from the pulpits of many churches, full of skepticism, full of doubts, without the heart of the Holy Spirit, without the assurance of the Scriptures, and we fell the Valley of Dry Bones. But we have two important lessons from the prophet Ezekiel. We did not go the Valley by ourselves; it was not Satan either who brought us to the Valley for this shocking experience. It was the hand of the Lord himself, it was by His Spirit that we have been brought to the Valley, to the contemplation of the dry bones. What to do? What is the prophecy? The death of the Church is not the final word. Can these dry bones of ECUSA and other denominations live? The Lord is sovereign. He will open the graves, he will bring back the bones. He is going to put His Spirit and the dry bones will live again. This is His promise, this is our hope.

We are week, we are impure, we are sinners, but He leads us to righteousness. We are receivers, but we are also instruments of His gift of Eternal Life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Stand, resist, obey, do, fight, proclaim, act by faith, even in the midst of the wilderness, in the midst of the darkness. He is water. He is Light. He is the Way. Our limited mind, our limited spirit has a natural difficulty in understanding the challenges of doing History, of being authors of a chapter of the Church History. We are not only under God's judgment but under History's judgment and the judgment of our posterity.

Is our Church dead? Lazarus was also dead. Brothers and sisters take away the stone -- the stone of heresy and the stone of fear. The stone of immorality and the stone of accomodation. Take awy the stone. It's a precondition for Jesus' action. They took the stone, they believed, and they saw a miracle. Death was defeated. The loud voice of Jesus is saying "COME OUT." The dead man came out. The dead church will come out. The church will be stripped of the grave clothes, and we all will see the Glory of God.

We are part of the church Universal, the church of the masters and the martyrs, the heroes of the faith of all centuries, the Catholic church and also the church of the Reformation. God was present in Anglicanism for centuries, and still is, in the majority of our Provinces, Dioceses and Parishes in all continents. We can hear the teaching of sound doctrine.

Your situation in the United States, and our situation in Northeastern Brazil are similar. We are oppressed minorities in our countries, but we are part of the majority in the Anglican Communion. You are not alone. We are not alone. Thousands and thousands of believers in 164 countries are supporting you and me. You are keeping the pure seed of the Gospel, and the Word of the Lord never returns empty.

Oh Lord hear our voice.
The Dry Bones will live again.
The Dead one will come out.
The God of the Providence, Lord of History, Lord of the Church in in control.
Don't fear my little flock.
He gave you His Spirit.
He gave you all authority
Therefore go.
In the midst of the storm we listened to His voice: "I am with you always, to the very end of the age. I am with you always, Anglican Fellowship in High Springs, Florida, USA."

To Him be all honor and glory now and forever. Amen.

+Robinson Cavalcanti
Diocesan Bishop of Recife, Brazil
5th Sunday of Lent

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant
KEYWORDS: angpost

1 posted on 03/14/2005 7:57:27 AM PST by sionnsar
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To: ahadams2; stan_sipple; SuzyQue; LifeofRiley; TheDean; pharmamom; Vicomte13; TaxRelief; Huber; ...
Traditional Anglican ping, continued in memory of its founder Arlin Adams.

FReepmail sionnsar if you want on or off this moderately high-volume ping list (typically 3-7 pings/day).
This list is pinged by sionnsar and newheart.

Resource for Traditional Anglicans:

Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15

2 posted on 03/14/2005 7:58:27 AM PST by sionnsar (†† || Iran Azadi || Where are we going, and why are we in this handbasket?)
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To: sionnsar

Beautiful sermon.

May God purify the Anglican Communion so that the heat of His Love that emenates from it warms the world.

With the times that may be coming, Christians of all communities need to be prepared to stand together for Christ.

The days are growing shorter.

3 posted on 03/14/2005 9:02:09 AM PST by JFK_Lib
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To: JFK_Lib

I heard Hank Hanegraff quote Chesterton last week: "There have been five times in history when the Church has gone to the dogs. In each case it was the dog that died, not the Church."

4 posted on 03/14/2005 10:49:39 AM PST by newheart (The Truth? You can't handle the Truth. But He can handle you.)
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