The Treasure of Traditional Anglicanism
Anyone who has begun to learn the constellations can relate to the experience of standing out on a clear night with a friend and being frustrated in the attempt to point out one of those starry figures. A person, from their own perspective, can point directly at a star, and yet their pointing is useless to another because the other does not see from the same perspective. A friend who is truly interested in seeing the constellation has no choice but to move in much closer to the one who points so that their perspectives can be the same. Even after moving closer together, sometimes less obvious constellations require patience from both parties and continual explanation before the figure comes clearly into view.
For anyone who has had a friend or family member join a traditional Anglican church, you may have sensed that this person earnestly wants you to see what they are seeing. They tell you to come closer, visit the church with them, look along from their perspective, be patient, and try earnestly to see the pattern that is so clear to them. Many will not take the time or put in the effort to understand why traditional Anglicanism appeals so much to their loved one. Others are willing to at least move closer and lean in to see what seems to be so fascinating.
Those who take the time to see, often gasp when the “constellation” of traditional Anglicanism comes into view. Some say that they have finally come home. Some say that they finally are able to worship. Most, and especially the weary, recognize that they have found a spiritual treasure. That is, they have found stable, orthodox, reverent, literate, sacramental, solemn, joyful, catholic Christianity in the English tradition.
The Parishes and Missions of the Deanery of Appalachia are a group of churches within the lower Appalachian region of The Anglican Province of America. We are in communion with a number of other Anglican groups which also worship in the same rich tradition. Use this website to look into one or more of our churches. If you are in our area, come and visit one of our services. If we don’t have a parish in your area, call the nearest APA church and they may be able to direct you to a traditional Anglican church nearer to you.
If you are beginning to see the constellation that so many have seen in traditional Anglicanism, surely it will be worth the effort to find one of these churches to call your home. Surely it will be worth the search when you are so close to finding such treasure!
May God richly bless you all!
Fr. Paul Rivard+
Dean of Appalachia, Rector of St. George’s Anglican Church