An Overview of the REC
The Reformed Episcopal Church was organized in New York City in 1873 by eight clergymen and twenty laymen who were formerly presbyters and members of the Protestant Episcopal Church. Some in the latter quarter of the 19th Century concluded that their beloved Protestant Episcopal Church had so dramatically changed that they had no alternative but to preserve the old Church through reorganization. The immediate cause of the division lay in the participation of The Rt. Rev. George David Cummins, Assistant Bishop of the Diocese of Kentucky in the Protestant Episcopal Church, (pictured) at a Communion Service held in the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City. In the face of criticism and with the conviction that the evangelical and catholic nature and mission of the Protestant Episcopal Church were being lost, Bishop Cummins issued a call to re-form the church. He became the founding Bishop of the Reformed Episcopal Church, thereby maintaining historic succession of orders to this very day in the Reformed Episcopal Church.
God has brought the Reformed Episcopal Church into being for the
purpose of revivifying the Anglican Communion
7th General Council of the Reformed Episcopal Church
Our Mission StatementApproved, General Committee, October 5, 2003
Built upon the foundation of the authoritative Word of God, the Holy Scriptures, the Reformed Episcopal Church sets her highest priority on biblical WORSHIP and declares her commitment to the work of EVANGELISM, the bold and unadulterated proclamation of salvation by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 8:4). In keeping the faith once delivered to the saints, the Reformed Episcopal Church, however, does not believe evangelism to be the end, but rather the beginning of her divinely given vocation.
In addition to being evangelical, she is deeply committed to DISCIPLESHIP, the work of training evangelized men and women in Christian living (St. Matthew 28:20). When the Gospel is truly proclaimed and the mercies of God are made known, redeemed men and women must be led to offer their bodies as a living sacrifice, which is their spiritual service (Romans 12:1). Thus, the Reformed Episcopal Church understands the Christian life to be necessarily corporate. The Gospel call of salvation is not only to a savior, but also to a visible COMMUNION (I Cor.12:27) which, being indwelt by Christ's Spirit, transcends both temporal and geographic bounds.
Therefore, the Reformed Episcopal Church is CREEDAL, following the historic catholic faith as it was confessed by the early undivided Church in the Apostles' (A.D. 150), Nicene (A.D. 325) and Athanasian Creeds (circa. A.D. 401); SACRAMENTAL, practicing the divinely ordained sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper as outward and visible signs of His inward and spiritual grace; LITURGICAL, using the historic Book of Common Prayer; and EPISCOPAL, finding unity with the Church of the earliest Christian eras through submission to the government of godly bishops.
In this fashion, by embracing the broad base of doctrine and practice inherent in apostolic Christianity received by the Church of the English Reformation and expressed in the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion, the Reformed Episcopal Church has a foundation for effective ministry in the name of Christ to a world which is lost and dying without Him.
Authorities, Declarations and Affirmations
This Church holds the Faith as once delivered to the saints, and as transmitted through the Church of England, especially as articulated in her Reformation heritage, the range of her Anglican divines, and as deposited in the founding principles of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. Furthermore, this Church receives Holy Scripture as the Word of God. We affirm the three ancient creeds, commonly known as the Nicene, Apostles' and Creed of Athanasius, the dogmatic definitions of the first four ecumenical councils of the undivided church and The Thirty-nine Articles of Religion in their 1801 form. Beginning with the Declaration of Principles at the time of her founding, this Church has adopted several doctrinal declarations and affirmations which are consistent with the above authorities.
The Creeds (Read)
The Ecumenical Councils (Read)
The Thirty-nine Articles of Religion (Read)
DECLARATIONS & AFFIRMATIONS
Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral 1888 (Read)
Anglican Belief & Practice 2002 (Read)
The Jerusalem Declaration 2008 (Read)
Anglican Church in North America Theological Statement 2008 (Read)
- Christian Sexual Ethics (adopted 1990)
- Sanctity of Human Life (adopted 1990)
- Women in Combat (adopted 2017)
Currently, the Reformed Episcopal Church within the United States and Canada is divided into four geographical regions with each region governed by a Bishop Ordinary and a Standing Committee. These regions (called Dioceses) are:
- The Diocese of the Northeast & MidAtlantic with the Convocation of Eastern Canada
- The Diocese of the Southeast
- The Diocese of the Central States
- The Diocese of Mid-America with the Convocation of the West & Western Canada
In addition , The Reformed Episcopal Church has 3 oversees Dioceses located in Croatia, Cuba, and Germany.
The Reformed Episcopal Church also supports missionaries and Church planting efforts throughout the world. Past and present mission efforts have included countries such as:
We also join our support with other missionary societies such as SAMS USA (Society of Anglican Missionaries and Senders). We are a Church Parter of Anglican Global Mission Partners and we partner with Anglican Relief and Development (ARDF) in meeting needs throughout the Anglican world.
Visit the BFM
The Reformed Episcopal Church takes seriously her call and responsibility to train succeeding generations for ministry within the Church. Almost since her founding in 1873, the Reformed Episcopal Church has had at least one Theological Seminary to fulfil this responsibility. Currently, there are three Theological Institutions of the Reformed Episcopal Church within the United States and two in Europe (Croatia, Germany). In addition, Assistant Bishop to Cuba, William Suarez, utilizes a spanish language training program developed by Moore College to train our Cuban pastors.
Reformed Episcopal Seminary (Philadelphia, PA) (Visit Website)
Cummins Theological Seminary (Summerville, SC) Visit Website
Cranmer Theological House (Houston/Dallas, TX) (Visit Website)
Michael Starin Theological Seminary (Croatia)
St. Benedict Theological Seminary (Germany)
The Reformed Episcopal Church is a subjurisdiction of the Anglican Church in North America. In addition, the Reformed Episcopal Church shares a common Episcopate with the Free Church of England (otherwise known as the Reformed Episcopal Church in England) and is in communion with The Anglican Province of America and the The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion)