Skip to comments.An Open Letter...from Bishop John Lipscomb [Another TEC Bishop Goes Papist]
Posted on 11/21/2007 1:28:26 PM PST by Unam Sanctam
Dear Friends in Christ,
I have communicated to the Presiding Bishop my request to be released from my ordination vows and the obligations and responsibilities of a member of the House of Bishops. I have taken this step in order to be received into the Catholic Church. Through a long season of prayer and reflection Marcie and I have come to believe this is the leading of the Holy Spirit and Gods call to us for the next chapter of our lives. We are grateful to our brother in Christ, the Most Rev. Robert N. Lynch, the Bishop of St. Petersburg, for his openness to our request and for his prayerful support.
I was blessed to grow up in a Christian home where I was given the gift of a deep love for the Lord Jesus Christ and a reverence for Gods revelation of his love and redemptive purpose in the Word written, as well as the Word made Flesh. I was blessed to be brought into the family of the Episcopal Church 40 years ago. I have a deep love for the sacramental life, most especially the Eucharistic sacrifice through which God continues to pour his grace into our lives in the Word that needs no words.
I will be forever grateful for the opportunities I had to serve this faith community as a deacon and priest. I am most grateful for the opportunity you, the people of the Diocese of Southwest Florida, gave me to serve as your bishop and to participate in the life of the Anglican Communion. You made it possible for me to share in the mission of God that can never be bound by geographical or political barriers.
I believe God is now calling us to continue our ministry to serve in the healing of the visible Body of Christ in the world. I am convinced our Lords deepest desire is for the unity of the Church.
Marcie and I will never have the words to express to you the depth of our gratitude for the support you gave us during my medical leave and for the joyous celebration of the ministry you allowed us to share with you that brings to a close my ordained ministry in the Episcopal Church. We will pray for the continued health and vitality of the Diocese of Southwest Florida.
The following prayer by Thomas Merton speaks more eloquently than we can find possible at this moment. Marcie and I have experienced an abundance of Gods grace throughout our lives, and we continue to trust God in the future, which continues to unfold for us:
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
Welcome Home John
The Episcopagan Cult is starting to come unraveled very quickly. Yes, yes, the “Spirit is starting to do a new thing.”
Best wishes to the gentleman.
I had hopes for this one, but I think he’s taking his diocese the Alternative Primatial Oversight route.
“November 12, 2007
The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori
815 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017
I have received your letter of November 8th and am rather surprised by your suggestion that I have somehow abandoned the communion of the church and may be subject to ecclesiastical discipline. Such a charge is baseless. I have abandoned nothing, and I have violated no canons. Every year at our Chrism Mass, I very happily reaffirm my ordination vows, along with all our clergy, that I will be loyal to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of Christ as this Church has received them. (BCP, pages 526 and 538)
It is highly inappropriate for you to attempt to interfere in the internal life of this diocese as we prayerfully prepare to gather in Convention. The threatening tone of your open letter makes no attempt to promote reconciliation, mediation, or even dialogue about our profound theological differences. Instead, it appears designed to intimidate our delegates and me, in an attempt to deter us from taking any action that opposes the direction in which you are leading our Church. It is deeply troubling that you would have me prevent the clergy and laity of this diocese from openly discussing our future place in the life of the wider Anglican Communion, as we debate a variety of proposals. As you well know, the polity of this Church requires the full participation of the clergy and lay orders, not just bishops, in the decision making process. It grieves me that as the Presiding Bishop you would misuse your office in an attempt to intimidate and manipulate this diocese.
While I do not wish to meet antagonism with antagonism, I must remind you that 25 years ago this month, the newly formed Diocese of Fort Worth voluntarily voted to enter into union with the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. If circumstances warrant it, we can likewise, by voluntary vote, terminate that relationship. Your aggressive, dictatorial posturing has no place in that decision. Sadly, however, your missive will now be one of the factors that our Convention will consider as we determine the future course of this diocese for the next 25 years and beyond, under Gods grace and guidance.
In closing, let me be very clear. While your threats deeply sadden us, they do not frighten us. We will continue to stand firm for the unchanging truth of the Holy Scriptures and the redeeming Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, whatever the costs. I shall continue to pray for you, as I trust you will pray for me, in the difficult days ahead.
Faithfully in Christ,
The Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker Bishop of Fort Worth”
**I believe God is now calling us to continue our ministry to serve in the healing of the visible Body of Christ in the world. I am convinced our Lords deepest desire is for the unity of the Church. **
This sounds like a bishop who knows what to do!!
Welcome home, John Lipscomb!
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THE ORTHODOX REVIVAL IN RUSSIA
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Catholic Converts - Richard John Neuhaus
Catholic Converts - Avery Cardinal Dulles
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Catholic Converts - Marcus Grodi
The Scott Hahn Conversion Story
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Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15
I hope to “welcome home” in warm sincerity someday those misled by the cult of the Bishop of Rome. Both they and the revisionist Episcopalians need to repent and move toward obedience to Christ through His sacred Word.
Christ has mercy though, on us all, and knows our hearts—in all parts His body, Roman, non-Roman, Eastern Orthodox and more....the invisible Church on Earth.
Spoken like a true protestant!
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