PREFACETO THE FAITHFUL MEMBERS OF THE REFORMED EPISCOPAL FAMILY OF CHURCHES;
On behalf of all the Bishops of the Reformed Episcopal Churches, we bring you greetings in the Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
We write to commend an important teaching document produced by us, Understanding the Declaration of Principles in the 21st Century. The need for this work results from the significant growth of our part of the Lord’s Church over the last century or so. In particular, much has happened during this long period which reflects how the Holy Spirit has led our understanding of the Declaration of Principles.
Over the years our mission and growth have necessitated many changes. Constitutions and Canons have been updated, liturgical provision has been revised, and our engagements with other Christians (most recently within the GAFCON movement) have required us to express our faith in present-day terms. In all of this our intention, and that of our predecessors, has been to ensure that the substance of the faith is kept entire, though some of the language we use may differ from age to age.
In light of commitment to our Lord Jesus Christ, to the infallible Word of God Written, and to all our doctrinal statements, we therefore provide the teaching, Understanding the Declaration of Principles in the 21st Century. We hope that this instruction will further us in the classical Anglican heritage that we represent. Bishop Cummins called this legacy “The Old Paths . . . with unbroken succession through the Church of England, with the Church of Christ from the earliest Christian era.”
It is our earnest desire that the instruction by the Bishops of your church would be prayerfully considered and received. Out of pastoral love we present this teaching for the Glory of God and for the edification of all Reformed Episcopalians and those who seek to understand us better. To these ends, we trust our Lord to continue His blessing on this faithful portion of His Church.
Sincerely in Christ,
The Most Rev. Ray R. Sutton, Ph.D. Presiding Bishop, North America
The Most Rev. John Fenwick, D.D. Primus, The Free Church of England
Feast of St Augustine of Hippo 28th August 2018
The body of the Document is only available to view in pdf format.