Grace and Peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!
This communication is to give a Clarion Call for you to attend an ecumenical “ High Church Worship Service” on Saturday, August 24th, 2013 at High Noon with The International Alliance Of Bishops in Raleigh, NC.
It is my desire as patriarch of this body of leaders to see to it that we get combined exposure to Theological, liturgical, and High Church order to propel Church leaders into a deeper relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
We will be focusing on restoring the “Awe” of God back into worship. We are requesting all clergy come fully vested for the occasion and bring your congregations for a sacred “Mass Communion.”
I don’t want merely a parade of vestments but a sacredness of purpose as we make a statement about worship that captures both mind and spirit in the region and hopefully will impact a return to real intimate love for God expressed in corporate worship.
This letter is to express my opinion and expertise in observing the need to express both High” and “Low” styles of worship. “High Church in Anglican worship stresses the sacerdotal [priestly], liturgical, ceremonial, traditional, and Catholic elements in worship. “Low Church” is a neutral term that simply describes a type of worship that does not follow a prescribed order of service, and does not follow certain liturgical patterns, and does not make use of developed ritual, ceremony, or worship accouterments like vestments.
Christianity is a many layered Faith and many components have been introduced and battled over historically and biblically. We are always faced with tradition and revelation. The Convergence Movement though not new in concept is new in acceptance. I believe like everything, there is a time and season for spiritual growth. If we accept that the concept of merging worship practices as a reality, then we can begin a new era in the Church. Convergence Theology means to me an understanding of liturgical elements in the Church linked with supernatural magnifications of the presence of God as we practice the typography of elements and manifestation of Grace in our worship. In other words, a blending of common styles and practices to achieve a common goal.
It is not that we don’t know that convergence has never taken place in the Bible. Observe the history and development of Tent to Tabernacle to Temple worship in the Old Testament. It was a type of convergence that never got rid of elementary rituals while it advanced to more sophisticated forms of worship in the Temple proper. The Charismatic outpour in the Temple dedication of Solomon should be proof enough that both liturgical and Spirit manifestation can be merged.
The word ecumenical comes from the Greek ‘oikumenikos’, ‘meaning universal or worldwide. So to have ecumenical interests is to have the interest in the global church Body. But for many Christians, Catholic or Protestant, the word is associated with the idea of compromise. It is assumed that ecumenism means finding the lowest common denominator of the Christian faith and having to give up the rest. We have tried everything to unite the Church for over 2,000 years. We are still begging arguments with dead scholars and criticizing and rejecting worship practices that we never experienced or like. It’s as if we are aware of the problems but can’t agree on the solutions.
The word “liturgy” comes from the Greek (leitourgia) – and it means public work or duty, work of the people. Liturgy is the spiritual work of all God’s people. Liturgy is structured common prayer. It can be shared, common worship precisely because it is structured. In fact all churches and individuals structure their spirituality. Ecumenically there has been much growing together around liturgy and lectionary.
Regardless of your denominational or theological position, let’s unite on this day with the common goal of lifting up Jesus until His Glory fills the house and we are so consumed with worship that no one else getting the “Glory” but Him who sits on the Throne as “King of Kings” and “Lord of Lords.”
I am calling for a 18 hour sacred period of Fasting and Prayer among the leaders who would participate leading up to our High Noon celebration from Friday, August 23rd at 6:00 pm – Saturday, August 24th at 12 noon. Seven periods of Prayer should observed beginning on Friday, August 23rd at 6:00 p.m. and continued on a every 3 hour interval until Saturday, August 24th at High Noon.
Venue – Mt Sinai Holy Church Of America
301 S. Swain Street
Bishop Bruce Rogers, Host Pastor