Anglican Province of America
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|Anglican Province of America (APA)|
Traditional, Evangelical, Episcopal, Catholic
|Associations||Federation of Anglican Churches in the Americas. Intercommunion with Reformed Episcopal Church, Anglican Church in North America, Church of Nigeria and Anglican Church in America.|
|Region||United States of America|
|Separated from||Anglican Church in America|
|Branched from||American Episcopal Church|
The Anglican Province of America (APA) is a Continuing Anglican church in the United States. The church was founded by former members of the Episcopal Church in the USA in order to follow what they consider to be a more truly Christian and Anglican tradition. It comprises 3 dioceses: Diocese of the Eastern United States (DEUS), Diocese of Mid-America (DMA), and the Diocese of the West (DMA). The combined dioceses total 60 congregations, with an estimated 6,000 members.
In the 1960s, the Episcopal Church in the United States (ECUSA) increasingly involved itself with the Civil Rights Movement. Some in the church began to question areas of ECUSA's involvement which seemed to them to be supporting radical causes. At the same time, revisions made in Roman Catholic liturgies caused many within the ECUSA leadership to champion an updating of the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer.
Opposition to these actions led to the founding of the American Episcopal Church (AEC) in March 1968. At a meeting held in Mobile, Alabama, it was agreed that a new body was needed in order to preserve traditional Anglicanism.
In 1974, the Episcopal Bishop of Kentucky, David B. Reed, suggested talks between representatives of the Episcopal Church and the American Episcopal Church. The talks were, however, postponed and they did not resume until 1978 following the Congress of St. Louis (see below) at which the Continuing Anglican movement was founded.
"Continuing Church" movement
The 1976 General Convention of the Episcopal Church in the United States approved the ordination of women to the priesthood and the first reading of legislation to adopt a new Prayer Book. Traditionalists within the Episcopal Church made plans for the Congress of St. Louis. The Congress brought together nearly 2000 Episcopalians and members of the Anglican Church of Canada and succeeded in launching the Continuing Anglican movement—but without representatives from the American Episcopal Church.
In the early 1990s, the leadership of the AEC began unity talks with the leadership of the Anglican Catholic Church (ACC), the largest of several church bodies that had come from the work of the Congress of St. Louis. These talks eventually led to the merger of around 33% of the ACC (along with its Archbishop, Louis Falk) with the AEC to form the Anglican Church in America (ACA). Some of the remainder later formed the Anglican Province of America after the resignation of Bishop Anthony F. M. Clavier as bishop ordinary of the ACA's. The diocese and most of its thirty parishes chose to leave the Anglican Church in America and her worldwide affiliate, the Traditional Anglican Communion.
The presiding bishop of the APA from its founding until the present has been the Most Reverend Walter Grundorf. Bishop Grundorf was a signatory to the Bartonville Agreement of 1999 which outlined a plan for cooperation between some of the Continuing Anglican churches and conservatives in the Episcopal Church. A concordat of intercommunion has also been achieved with the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) and the Reformed Episcopal Church. The Anglican Province of America has been a ministry partner organization of the Anglican Church in North America since its foundation in 2009.
Through the Federation of Anglican Churches in the Americas , the APA is associated with the Common Cause Partnership, an organization seeking to unite various Anglican jurisdictions to form a new conservative province of the Anglican Communion in North America. But when, in July 2008, the APA voted to delay a decision on its membership until a number of contentious issues were resolved in the Common Cause Partnership, including whether or not to accept the practice of ordaining women, the APA's Diocese of the West disaffiliated. It subsequently joined the Reformed Episcopal Church and, through her, the Common Cause Partnership. On March 4, 2009, the Anglican Province of America (APA) reorganized its Diocese of the West (DOW) with parishes that had chosen not to follow Bishop Richard Boyce out of the APA.
On June 10, 2010, the Rev. Canon Chandler Holder Jones, SSC was elected Bishop Suffragan of the Diocese of the Eastern United States at the 42nd Annual Synod of the diocese, held in Orlando, Florida. He was consecrated on September 18, 2010.
On July 19, 2012, the Rev. Robert Todd Giffin was elected Bishop Suffragan of the Diocese of Mid-America at the 3rd Annual Synod of the Diocese, held in Lima, Ohio. He was consecrated on October 6, 2012. On February 22, 2014, the Rt. Rev. Robert Todd Giffin was elected Bishop Coadjutor of the Diocese of Mid-America at an Election Synod held in Merrillville, Indiana. He will succeed the Rt. Rev. Dr. Larry Lee Shaver as Bishop Ordinary when he retires at the 2015 Synod.
There have recently been discussions of unifying elements of the Anglican Church in America with the Anglican Province of America. The Traditional Anglican Communion, including its American branch, the ACA, has long sought unity with the Roman Catholic Church. In October 2009, the Vatican responded with Anglicanorum Coetibus which allows for the establishment of Anglican personal ordinariates under papal authority. Some members of the ACA have agreed to join the new ordinariate, while others have not. Instead the latter will continue as the Anglican Church in America and have pursued establishing closer relationships with other Continuing Anglican jurisdictions, particularly their former brethren, the APA. In July 2011, the APA's provincial synod voted unanimously to approve an intercommunion agreement with the ACA, anticipating a formal reunion of the two bodies at some time in the future.
- Rev'd Mark F.M. Clavier. "A History of the Anglican Province of America". Anglican Province of America. Retrieved 2009-06-23.[dead link]
- David Virtue (2008-09-07). "Anglican Province of America Diocese of the West Joins Reformed Episcopal Church". Virtue Online. Retrieved 2009-06-23.