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Presiding Bishop, ecumenical religious leaders descend on Washington, D.C., to ‘reclaim Jesus’

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 3:43pm

Tourists gather in front of the White House in November. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry travels this week to Washington, D.C., for a series of events as part of the “Reclaiming Jesus” initiative, including meetings with lawmakers on Capital Hill, a Morning Prayer service and a candlelight procession to the White House. Photo: David Paulsen/Episcopal News Service

[Episcopal News Service] Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and the Rev. Jim Wallis of the Christian social justice organization Sojourners will co-lead a May 24 service at National City Christian Church followed by a candlelight procession to the White House.

The events in Washington, D.C., are part of “Reclaiming Jesus: A Confession of Faith in a Time of Crisis,”  an ecumenical Christian elders’ initiative launched in March to “reclaim Jesus” from those believed to be using Christian theology for political gain.

“We are living through perilous and polarizing times as a nation, with a dangerous crisis of moral and political leadership at the highest levels of our government and in our churches,” said the 23 original signers of the statement. “We believe the soul of the nation and the integrity of faith are now at stake.”

It’s the church’s role to change the world through the love and life of Christ. When political leadership undermines that role, “faith leaders must stand up and speak out,” they said, invoking the words of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the church is the conscience of the state, not its master or servant.”

The contemporary Christian religious leaders believe the United States is in a political, moral and theological crisis. They are concerned with the resurgence of white nationalism, racism and xenophobia; misogyny; attacks on immigrants, refugees and the poor; the distortion of facts and consistent lying by the nation’s highest leaders; and moves toward autocratic political leadership and authoritarian rule.

Since its release, other Christian leaders have requested to sign on to the statement. At the same time, Curry’s own profile has risen dramatically since he was chosen to preach May 19 at the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. His sermon continues to generate praise this week as Curry turns his attention to Reclaiming Jesus.

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry preaches at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle in Windsor, Britain, May 19. Photo: Reuters

“This weekend I spoke about the way of love. As elders, we view bringing the Reclaiming Jesus declaration to the public square as a tangible example of how to live out that way of love,” Curry said in a news release on Sojourners’ website. “We are Christian leaders bearing moral witness to the teachings of our faith in the public square. As citizens we want our government to reflect our values. As a Bishop I believe we should follow the teachings of Jesus – who taught us to love God and love our neighbor.”

The May 24 service begins at 7 p.m. Curry and Wallis will address “faith in a time of crisis,” prayers and declarations will be offered, and the Howard University Gospel Choir will perform. It’s no coincidence that church leaders planned their trip to Washington to coincide with Pentecost, a time when early Christians took their faith to the streets and the public square.

For the presiding bishop, however, the visit to Washington is more than a public witness. Curry will begin the day by offering Morning Prayer at the U.S. Capitol for members of Congress and their staffs. This is a continuation of the monthly Morning Prayer services organized by the Episcopal Church Office of Government Affairs and led by Episcopal bishops and clergy for more than a year. Following Morning Prayer, Curry is scheduled to meet with lawmakers from both parties and with Republican leaders to share the church’s values and look for points of agreement on issues ranging from refugee resettlement to higher education and criminal justice reform.

The Episcopal Church maintains an official presence in the capital; its Office of Government Relations – housed on Capitol Hill – carries out the church’s nonpartisan, values-based agenda. Every three years the Episcopal Church’s General Convention meets to conduct church-related business and to discuss and pass legislation ranging from revisions to the Book of Common Prayer to resolutions supporting criminal justice and immigration reform. Episcopalians can join the Episcopal Public Policy Network to become involved in this work.

Churches and religious communities have a constitutional right to petition the government. The First Amendment’s Establishment Clause does not prohibit churches from meeting with, educating or advocating to elected officials with the aim of creating laws in line with the churches’ values. Throughout U.S. history, religious communities have engaged politically on issues of the era: from abolition to civil rights movements to immigration reform.

Incidentally, the United States has a long history of political leaders from the Anglican tradition, starting with President George Washington and many members of first Congress in 1789. The Episcopal Church’s prominence on Capitol Hill has been eclipsed by other denominations as the country has diversified over more than two centuries, though dozens of members of Congress still identify as Episcopalians or Anglicans.

Today, at least 38 of the 535 citizens serving in Congress identify as Episcopalians; 22 Republican, 16 Democrats.

In November 2017, Episcopal News Service interviewed several Episcopalians who serve in Congress to report on the range of ways faith influences lawmakers’ public service.

Reclaiming Jesus is just one ecumenical campaign joined by the Episcopal Church. Others include Pray Fast Act and the Poor People’s Campaign.

More information about the Episcopal Church’s Office of Government Relations is available here. For more information about or to join the Episcopal Public Policy Network, click here.

-Lynette Wilson is managing editor of the Episcopal News Service. She can be reached at lwilson@episcopalchurch.org.  

Sermon de l’Évêque Primat Curry lors du mariage royal

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 2:31pm

Owen Humphreys/REUTERS

Michael Curry, Évêque Primat de l’Église épiscopale, a prononcé un sermon lors du mariage royal du Prince Harry et de Meghan Markle. Le mariage du Prince Henry Charles Albert David de Galles – membre de la famille royale d’Angleterre et sixième dans le rang de succession au trône – et Rachel Meghan Markle, actrice américaine, a fait les gros titres du monde entier.

La vidéo est disponible ici.

Voici le texte du sermon de l’Évêque Primat :

« La force de l’amour » — Sermon
de Monseigneur Michael B. Curry
pour le mariage de
SAR le Prince Henry de Galles & Mme Meghan Markle
le samedi 19 mai 2018

Et maintenant, au nom de notre Dieu aimant, libérateur et source de vie, du Père, du Fils et du Saint-Esprit. Amen.

Tiré du Chant de Salomon, dans la Bible :

Mets-moi comme un sceau sur ton cœur,
comme un sceau sur ton bras,
car fort comme la mort est amour,
inflexible comme enfer est jalousie,
ses flammes sont des flammes ardentes,
un coup de foudre sacré.
Les grandes eaux ne pourraient éteindre l’amour
et les fleuves ne le submergeraient pas.

Cantique des Cantiques 8:6-7

Le regretté Martin Luther King a dit un jour et je cite :

« Il nous faut découvrir la force de l’amour, la force rédemptrice de l’amour. Et lorsque nous l’aurons découvert, nous serons capables de faire de ce vieux monde un nouveau monde. L’amour est la seule voie. »

Il y a de la force dans l’amour. Ne la sous-estimez pas. Ne versez pas dans la sensiblerie. Il y a de la force, de la force dans l’amour. SI vous ne me croyez pas, pensez au moment où vous êtes pour la première fois tombé amoureux. Le monde entier semblait centré sur vous et votre bien-aimé. Oh, il y a de la force, de la force dans l’amour. Non seulement sous ses formes romantiques mais sous toutes ses formes, toutes les formes de l’amour. Il y a un certain sens, lorsque vous êtes aimé et que vous le savez, lorsque vous comptez pour quelqu’un et que vous le savez, lorsque vous aimez et que vous le montrez, on se sent vraiment bien. On sent quelque chose de juste. Et il y a une raison à cela.

La raison a à voir avec la source. Nous avons été créés par la force de l’amour. Et nos vies étaient destinées et sont destinées à être vécues dans cet amour. Voilà pourquoi nous sommes ici. En fin de compte, la source de l’amour est Dieu lui-même. La source de toutes nos vies.

Il y a un vieux poème médiéval qui dit :

« Où se trouve le véritable amour, Dieu lui-même est là ».

1 Jean dans le Nouveau Testament le dit de cette manière :

« Mes bien-aimés, aimons-nous les uns les autres,
car l’amour vient de Dieu,
et quiconque aime est né de Dieu
qui n’aime pas ne connaît pas Dieu
puisque Dieu est amour » (1Jean 4:4-8)

Il y a de la force dans l’amour.
Il y a de la force dans l’amour pour aider et guérir quand rien d’autre ne le peut.
Il y a de la force dans l’amour pour relever et libérer quand rien d’autre ne le peut.
Il y a de la force dans l’amour pour nous montrer la voie de la vie.

« Mets-moi comme un sceau sur ton cœur
Un sceau sur ton bras,
Car fort comme la mort est amour »

Mais l’amour ne concerne pas seulement un jeune couple.
La force de l’amour est démontrée par le fait que nous sommes tous ici.
Deux jeunes gens sont tombés amoureux et nous sommes tous venus !
Mais ce n’est pas seulement pour et au sujet du jeune couple que nous nous réjouissons. C’est plus que cela.

Un avocat a une fois demandé à Jésus de Nazareth de résumer l’essence des enseignements de Moïse. Et il a consulté et s’est replongé dans les écritures hébraïques du Deutéronome et du Lévitique où Jésus a dit :

Tu aimeras le Seigneur ton Dieu de tout ton cœur, de toute ton âme,
de toute ta pensée et de toute ta force.
C’est là le premier et le grand commandement.
Le second est lui aussi important.
Tu aimeras ton prochain comme toi-même.

Puis, dans la version de Matthieu, il a ajouté :

De ces deux commandements, l’amour de Dieu et l’amour de ton prochain, dépendent toute la Loi et les prophètes.

Tout ce que Moïse a écrit, tout dans les saints prophètes, tout dans les Écritures, tout ce que Dieu a essayé de dire au monde !

Aime Dieu !

Aime ton prochain.

Et pendant que tu y es, aime-toi.

Un jour quelqu’un a dit que Jésus a commencé le mouvement le plus révolutionnaire de toute l’histoire de l’humanité. Un mouvement fondé sur l’amour inconditionnel de Dieu pour le monde. Un mouvement qui oblige les peuples à vivre cet amour. Et ce faisant, à changer non seulement leur vie mais la vie même du monde.

Je parle là d’une force.
Une véritable force.
La force de changer le monde.

Et si vous ne me croyez pas, eh bien, il y a de vieux esclaves du Sud américain antebellum qui ont expliqué la force dynamique de l’amour et pourquoi il a la force de transformer. Ils l’ont expliqué de cette façon – ils chantaient des spirituals, alors même qu’ils étaient en captivité. Un de ces spirituals dit :

« Il y a du baume en Galaad »

Un baume guérisseur, quelque chose qui peut rectifier les torts –

« Il y a du baume en Galaad
Pour rétablir les blessés
Il y a du baume en Galaad
Pour guérir l’âme malade du péché »

Et l’une des strophes explique en réalité pourquoi :

« Si tu ne peux pas prêcher comme Pierre,
Et si tu ne peux pas prier comme Paul,
Raconte l’amour de Jésus,
Comment il est mort pour nous sauver tous »

Oh, Il y a du baume en Galaad !

Cette voie de l’amour est la voie de la vie ! Ils l’avaient compris !

Il est mort pour nous sauver tous ! Il n’est pas mort pour en tirer quoi que ce soit !
Jésus n’a pas obtenu un doctorat honorifique pour sa mort !
Il n’en a absolument rien retiré !
Il a donné sa vie, il a sacrifié sa vie pour le bien d’autrui, pour le bien de l’autre, pour le bien du monde, pour nous !

C’est cela l’amour.
L’amour n’est pas égoïste et égocentrique.
L’amour peut être sacrificiel.
Et ce faisant, il devient rédempteur.

Et cet amour altruiste, sacrificiel, rédempteur change les vies.
Et il peut changer ce monde.

Si vous ne me croyez pas, arrêtez-vous un instant pour réfléchir ou imaginer.
Réfléchissez et imaginez.
Réfléchissez et imaginez un monde où l’amour est la seule voie.

Imaginez nos foyers et nos familles où l’amour est la seule voie.
Imaginez les quartiers et les communautés où l’amour est la seule voie.
Imaginez nos gouvernements et nos nations où l’amour est la seule voie.
Imaginez les entreprises et le commerce où l’amour est la seule voie.
Imaginez ce vieux monde fatigué où l’amour est la seule voie.

Si l’amour est la voie altruiste, sacrificielle, rédemptrice.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, plus aucun enfant au monde n’ira au lit le ventre vide.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, nous laisserons la justice couler comme un fleuve majestueux et la droiture comme un ruisseau intarissable.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, la pauvreté sera reléguée au passé.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, la terre deviendra un sanctuaire.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, nous déposerons nos épées et nos boucliers sur la berge pour ne plus étudier la guerre.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, il y aura une abondance d’espace. Une abondance d’espace. Pour tous les enfants de Dieu.

Et si l’amour est la seule voie, nous nous traiterons les uns les autres – comme si nous étions en fait une famille.
Si l’amour est la seule voie, nous savons que Dieu est la source de nous tous et que nous sommes frères et sœurs. Les enfants de Dieu.

Mes frères et sœurs, c’est un nouveau paradis, une nouvelle terre, un nouveau monde.

Une nouvelle famille humaine.

Et laissez-moi vous dire une chose, le vieux Salomon avait raison dans l’Ancien Testament, c’est du feu.

Teilhard de Chardin – et sur ces paroles, je vais m’asseoir, il nous faut tous vous marier.

Le Jésuite français Teilhard de Chardin était sans conteste l’un des plus grands penseurs, des plus grands esprits du 20ème siècle. Un prêtre catholique jésuite, un scientifique, un savant, un mystique. Dans l’un de ses écrits il a dit, fort de son expérience scientifique et son expérience théologique. Dans certains de ses écrits il a dit, comme d’autres l’ont fait, que la découverte, l’invention ou la maîtrise du feu était l’une des plus grandes découvertes scientifiques et technologiques de toute l’histoire de l’humanité.

Le feu a dans une large mesure rendu possible la civilisation humaine.

Le feu nous a permis de cuire les aliments et d’introduire l’hygiène dans la cuisine, ce qui a réduit en son temps la propagation des maladies.

Le feu nous a permis de chauffer et de réchauffer les environnements et a par là même rendu possible la migration humaine à travers le monde, même dans les climats plus froids.

Le feu a rendu cela possible – il n’y aurait pas d’Âge de Bronze sans le feu. Pas d’Âge de Fer sans le feu. Pas de révolution industrielle sans le feu.

Les progrès de la science et de la technologie dépendent en grande partie de l’aptitude et de la capacité humaines de maîtriser le feu et de l’utiliser pour le bien de l’être humain.

Quelqu’un est-il venu en voiture ici aujourd’hui ? En automobile ?

Hochez la tête si c’est le cas, je suppose, je sais qu’il y avait des calèches.

Pour ceux d’entre nous qui sommes venus en voiture, le feu, le feu contrôlé, maîtrisé, a rendu cela possible.

Je sais que la Bible dit, et je le crois, que Jésus a marché sur l’eau mais je dois vous le dire, je n’ai pas traversé l’Océan atlantique à pied pour venir ici !

Le feu contrôlé dans cet avion est ce qui m’a amené ici !

Le feu est ce qui nous permet de communiquer par texto, Tweet, courriel, Instagram et Facebook et d’être socialement dysfonctionnels les uns avec les autres !

Le feu a rendu tout cela possible !

Et de Chardin a dit que le feu était l’une des plus grandes découvertes de toute l’histoire de l’humanité.

Puis il a ajouté que si jamais l’humanité arrivait à nouveau à maîtriser l’énergie du feu, si jamais l’humanité saisissait l’énergie de l’amour, ce serait la seconde fois de l’histoire que nous découvririons le feu.

Martin Luther King avait raison.
Il nous faut découvrir l’amour.
La force rédemptrice de l’amour.
Et si nous y parvenons, nous ferons de ce vieux monde un nouveau monde.

Mon frère, ma sœur,
Que Dieu vous aime, que Dieu vous bénisse.
Et que Dieu nous garde tous
dans ces mains toutes-puissantes d’amour.

Christians around the world gather in prayer on final weekend of Thy Kingdom Come

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 11:05am

[Anglican Communion News Service] The third annual ecumenical global wave of prayer for evangelism, Thy Kingdom Come, has come to an end with thousands of Christians around the world gathering for prayer and worship in “beacon events. The Thy Kingdom Come movement began with a simple invitation to prayer from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to the clergy of the Church of England but grew into a global ecumenical movement.

Read the full article here.

Archbishop welcomes ceasefire agreement as South Sudan peace talks continue

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 11:04am

[Anglican Communion News Service] The Anglican archbishop of South Sudan has led five days of mediated peace talks between the warring parties in South Sudan. The talks reached agreement on three of the 11 demands made by opposition groups, including a recommitment to the cessation of hostilities. Talks on the remaining eight unresolved issues will now continue under the leadership of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development. Archbishop Justin Badi Arama, who was only installed as Primate of the Anglican Church of South Sudan last month, led the talks in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa alongside a number of other South Sudanese religious leaders.

Read the full article here.

Sermón del Obispo Presidente Michael Curry en la Boda Real

Wed, 05/23/2018 - 4:40am

Owen Humphreys/ REUTERS

El Obispo Presidente y Primado de la Iglesia Episcopal Michael Curry predicó en la boda real del Príncipe Harry y Meghan Markle. Los titulares mundiales anunciaron la boda del 19 de mayo del príncipe Henry Charles Albert David de Gales, miembro de la familia real inglesa y sexto en línea para el trono, y Rachel Meghan Markle, una actriz estadounidense.

El video está disponible aquí (original en inglés)

A continuación les presentamos el texto del sermón del Obispo Presidente:

“El poder del amor” – Un sermón por el Reverendísimo Michael B. Curry
para

El matrimonio de
SAR el Príncipe Henry de Gales y la Sra. Meghan Markle
Sábado 19 de mayo de 2018

Y ahora en nombre de nuestro Dios amoroso, liberador y vivificante, Padre, Hijo y Espíritu Santo. Amén.

Del Cantar de los Cantares, en la Biblia:

Ponme como un sello sobre tu corazón,
como una marca sobre tu brazo;
Porque fuerte es como la muerte el amor;
pasión feroz como la tumba.
Sus brasas son brasas de fuego,
fuerte llama.
Las muchas aguas no podrán apagar el amor,
ni lo ahogarán los ríos.

El Cantar de los Cantares 8:6-7

El difunto Dr. Martin Luther King una vez dijo, y lo cito:

“Debemos descubrir el poder del amor, el poder redentor del amor. Y cuando descubrimos, seremos capaces de hacer de este viejo mundo un nuevo mundo. El amor es el único camino”.

Hay poder en el amor. No lo subestimen. Ni siquiera lo vean demasiado sentimental. Hay poder, poder en el amor. Si no me creen, piensen en un momento en el que se enamoraron por primera vez. El mundo entero parecía girar a su alrededor y de su amada. Oh, hay poder, poder en el amor. No sólo en sus tipos románticos, sino en cualquier tipo, en cualquier forma, de amor. Hay un cierto sentido, en el que cuando eres amado, y lo sabes, cuando le importas a alguien y lo sabes, cuando amas y lo muestras, en realidad se siente bien. Hay algo correcto al respecto. Y hay una razón para eso.

El motivo tiene que ver con la fuente. Fuimos creados por un poder de amor. Y nuestras vidas fueron creadas con esa intención, y están destinadas a ser vividas en ese amor. Es por eso que estamos aquí. En última instancia, la fuente del amor es Dios mismo. La fuente de todas nuestras vidas.

Como lo dice un viejo poema medieval:
“Donde se encuentra el verdadero amor, Dios mismo está allí”.

1era de Juan en el Nuevo Testamento lo dice de esta manera.

“Amados, amémonos unos a otros;
Porque el amor es de Dios;
Todo aquel que ama, es nacido de Dios y conoce a Dios
El que no ama, no ha conocido a Dios;
porque Dios es amor.” (1era de Juan 4:7-8)

Hay poder en el amor.
Hay poder en el amor para ayudar y sanar cuando nada más puede hacerlo.
Hay poder en el amor para levantar y liberar cuando nada más lo hará.
Hay poder en el amor para mostrarnos la forma de vivir.

“Ponme como un sello sobre tu corazón
Un sello en tu brazo ”

Porque fuerte es como la muerte el amor;

Pero el amor no se trata sólo de una pareja joven.
Ahora el poder del amor se demuestra por el hecho de que todos estamos aquí.
Dos jóvenes se enamoraron, ¡y todos nos presentamos!
Pero no es solo por y para una pareja joven con quienes nos regocijamos.
Es más que eso.

A Jesús de Nazaret en una ocasión le pidió un abogado que resumiera la esencia de las enseñanzas de Moisés. Y él leyó nuevamente, y volvió a las escrituras hebreas de Deuteronomio y Levítico, y Jesús dijo:

Amarás al Señor tu Dios con todo tu corazón, con toda tu alma, con toda tu mente y con todas tus fuerzas.
Este es el primer y gran mandamiento.
Y el segundo es como eso.
Amarás a tu prójimo como a ti mismo.

Y luego en la versión de Mateo, agregó, él dijo:

En estos dos, el amor de Dios y el amor al prójimo, se sostiene toda la ley, todos los profetas.

¡Todo lo que Moisés escribió, todo en los santos profetas, todo en las Escrituras, todo lo que Dios ha estado tratando de decirle al mundo!

¡Amen a Dios!
Amen a tus vecinos
Y mientras lo hacen, ámense ustedes mismos.

Alguien dijo una vez que Jesús comenzó el movimiento más revolucionario en toda la historia de la humanidad. Un movimiento basado en el amor incondicional de Dios por el mundo. Y un movimiento que manda a las personas a vivir ese amor. Y al hacerlo, cambiar no solo sus vidas, sino la vida misma del mundo.

Estoy hablando de un súper poder.
Poder real.
Poder para cambiar el mundo.

Y si no me creen, bueno, hubo unos esclavos en el Sur de la Antigüedad de los Estados Unidos, que explicaron el poder dinámico del amor y por qué tiene el poder de transformar. Lo explicaron de esta manera: cantaron una [canción] espiritual, incluso en medio de su cautiverio. Es una que dice:

“Hay un bálsamo en Galaad”

Un bálsamo curativo, algo que puede hacer las cosas bien –

“Hay un bálsamo en Galaad
Para que los heridos sean sanados
Hay un bálsamo en Galaad
Para sanar al alma enferma de pecado”.

Y una de las estrofas en realidad explica el porqué – dijeron:

“Si no puedes predicar como Pedro,
Y no puedes orar como Pablo
Tú habla del amor de Jesús,
Cómo murió para salvarnos a todos”.

¡Oh, ese es el bálsamo en Galaad!
¡Esta forma de amor, es la forma de vida! ¡Ellos lo entendieron!

¡Murió para salvarnos a todos! ¡No murió porque fuera a sacar nada de eso!
¡Jesús no recibió un doctorado honorario por morir!
¡No estaba sacando nada de eso!
Renunció a su vida, sacrificó su vida por el bien de los demás, por el bien del otro, por el bienestar del mundo, ¡por nosotros!

Eso es lo que es el amor.
El amor no es egoísta y egocéntrico.
El amor puede ser sacrificatorio.
Y al hacerlo, se vuelve redentor.

Y esa forma de amor desinteresado, sacrificado y redentor, cambia vidas.
Y puede cambiar este mundo.

Si no me creen, sólo detenganse a pensar, o imaginen.
Piensen, e imaginense.
Bueno, piensen e imaginense un mundo donde el amor es el camino.

Imaginen nuestros hogares y familias cuando el amor es el camino.
Imaginen vecindarios y comunidades cuando el amor es el camino.
Imaginen a nuestros gobiernos y naciones cuando el amor es el camino.
Imaginen los negocios y el comercio cuando el amor es el camino.
Imaginen este viejo mundo cansado cuando el amor es el camino.

Cuando el amor es el camino, desinteresado, sacrificado, redentor.
Cuando el amor es el camino, ningún niño volvería a la cama con hambre en este mundo nunca más.
Cuando el amor es el camino, dejaremos que la justicia ruede como una corriente poderosa y la justicia como un arroyo que fluye constantemente.
Cuando el amor es el camino, la pobreza se convertiría en historia.
Cuando el amor es el camino, la tierra será un santuario.
Cuando el amor es el camino, descansaremos nuestras espadas y escudos a la orilla del río y no estudiaremos la guerra jamás.

Cuando el amor es el camino, hay mucho espacio bueno. Mucho espacio bueno. Para todos los hijos de Dios.
Y cuando el amor es el camino, en realidad nos tratamos unos a otros, bueno, como si fuéramos realmente familia.
Cuando el amor es el camino, sabemos que Dios es la fuente de todos nosotros, y somos hermanos y hermanas. Hijos de Dios.

Mis hermanos y hermanas, ese es un cielo nuevo, una tierra nueva, un mundo nuevo.
Una nueva familia humana.

Y déjame decirte algo, el viejo Salomón tenía razón en el Antiguo Testamento, eso es fuego.

Teilhard de Chardin, y con esto, me sentaré, tenemos que casarlos.

El jesuita francés Teilhard de Chardin fue posiblemente una de las grandes mentes, grandes espíritus del siglo XX. Un jesuita, un sacerdote católico romano, un científico, un erudito, un místico. En algunos de sus escritos, dijo, desde su formación científica, así como desde su formación teológica. En algunos de sus escritos dijo, como otros lo hicieron, que el descubrimiento, la invención o el uso del fuego fue uno de los grandes descubrimientos científicos y tecnológicos de toda la historia de la humanidad.

El fuego hizo posible en gran medida la civilización humana.

El fuego hizo posible cocinar alimentos y proporcionar maneras sanas de comer, lo que redujo la propagación de la enfermedad en su momento.

El fuego hizo posible calentar y tibiar ambientes y, por lo tanto, hizo posible la migración humana en todo el mundo, incluso hacia climas más fríos.

El fuego lo hizo posible; no hubo Edad de Bronce sin fuego. No hubo Edad de Hierro sin fuego. No hubo revolución industrial sin fuego.

Los avances de la ciencia y la tecnología dependen en gran medida de la habilidad y capacidad humana de tomar el fuego y usarlo para el bien humano.

¿Alguien vino aquí en un carro hoy? ¿En un automóvil?
Asientan con sus cabezas si lo hicieron, estoy adivinando, sé que había algunos carruajes.
Para aquellos de nosotros que vinieron en autos, fuego y el fuego controlado y encapsulado lo hicieron posible.

Sé que la Biblia dice, y lo creo, que Jesús caminó sobre el agua, pero tengo que decirte que no crucé el océano Atlántico caminando para llegar hasta aquí.

¡El fuego controlado en ese avión me trajo aquí!

¡El fuego nos permite enviar mensajes de texto, enviar tweets y correos electrónicos y usar Instagram y Facebook, ¡y socialmente ser disfuncionales unos con otros!

¡El fuego hace todo eso posible!

Y de Chardin dijo que el fuego fue uno de los mayores descubrimientos en toda la historia de la humanidad.

Y luego continuó diciendo que si la humanidad alguna vez llegara a dominar la energía del fuego nuevamente, si la humanidad alguna vez captura la energía del amor, será la segunda vez en la historia que descubrimos el fuego.

El Dr. King tenía razón.
Debemos descubrir el amor.
El poder redentor del amor.
Y cuando lo hagamos, haremos de este viejo mundo un mundo nuevo.

Mi hermano, mi hermana,
Dios te ama, Dios te bendiga.
Y que Dios nos sostenga a todos,
en esas manos Todopoderosas de amor.

RIP: Bishop George Edward Councell of Diocese of New Jersey

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 4:13pm

[Episcopal News Service] The Rt. Rev.George Edward Councell, the 11th bishop of the Diocese of New Jersey, died May 21 hours after being transferred to hospice care, the diocese announced. He was 68.

Councell served 10 years as bishop before retiring in 2013, five years after doctors diagnosed Parkinson’s disease.

“I wanted to become a bishop to get closer to God, but with so many people here to look after, I thought, wow, I’ll really have to get closer to God to do this,” he said with a laugh in a 2013 interview with the The Times of Trenton. “But I feel that I have.”

Councell died at about 6 p.m. May 21 at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Hamilton.

“Family and friends were with him. I had an opportunity to say prayers and anoint him, and said commendatory prayers with the family,” Bishop Chip Stokes said in a brief message to the diocese announcing Councell’s death. “Please pray for Ruth, their daughters Martha and Sarah, and hold the Councell family in your prayers.

“May his soul and the souls of all the departed through the mercy of God rest in peace and rise in glory.”

Councell, who received his Master of Divinity degree from Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, was ordained as a priest in 1975 in the Diocese of Los Angeles and went on to serve as vicar of St. George’s Church in Riverside, California; canon to the ordinary of the Diocese of Western Massachusetts, and rector of Church of the Holy Spirit in Lake Forest Illinois, according an obituary by Planet Princeton.

He also was a supporter of greater inclusion of gay Episcopalians in the life of the church.

“It was very dear to me to keep everyone at the table, the Lord’s table, and not needlessly build these boundaries among one another,” he told The Times of Trenton in 2013. “The church isn’t the totally safe place I want it to be for gays and lesbians, but I think we’ve made it a safer place for them, and a place where they can come, and be seen as people who want the same things as all of us: to have a healthy, happy, strong, supportive family.”

Anglican Church of Melanesia launches Decade of Evangelism and Renewal

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 12:44pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] Members of the Anglican Church of Melanesia should “arise and shine for Jesus Christ,” the Province said this week as it launched a decade-long focus on evangelism and renewal. The campaign was launched on Pentecost Sunday with a special service at St Barnabas Cathedral, in Honiara, in which Anglican Communion Secretary General Josiah Idowu-Fearon preached. On the eve of the service, the province held an open-air evangelistic crusade in the car park of Honiara City Council.

Read the full article here.

Emergency appeal launched by overwhelmed Anglican hospital in Gaza City

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 12:39pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The Anglican Diocese in Jerusalem has launched an emergency appeal for funds to support its al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City. The Anglican-run hospital has been overwhelmed by the number of casualties sustained during protests across the Gaza strip this month.

“Our Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza had been literally working around the clock to serve the wounded from the escalating violence in the Gaza Strip ever since the United States formally opened its Embassy in Jerusalem on May 14,” Archbishop Suheil Dawani, the Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem and Primate of the Anglican Province of Jerusalem and the Middle East, said.

Read the full article here.

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry visited the hospital in March during a Lenten pilgrimage to the Holy Land. You can read about his visit to the hospital here and about his pilgrimage here.

National memorial service held on anniversary of Manchester Arena bombing

Tue, 05/22/2018 - 12:36pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The 22 people who died when a bomb exploded at the end of a concert by singer Ariana Grande in Manchester, England, last year were remembered May 22 in a sombre service in Manchester Cathedral. The national commemoration was attended by Archbishop of York John Sentamu and by Prince William and senior politicians across the political divide, including Prime Minister Theresa May.

Read the full article here.

Presiding Bishop’s royal wedding sermon on love draws global praise, boosts Episcopal evangelism

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 2:01pm

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle listen to a sermon by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, primate of the Episcopal Church, in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle during their wedding service on May 19. Photo: Reuters

[Episcopal News Service] It’s never polite to upstage the newlyweds, but when the royal couple invited Presiding Bishop Michael Curry to deliver the sermon at their wedding on May 19, they surely knew that the leader of the Episcopal Church was bound to generate headlines of his own.

“The surprise star of Harry and Meghan’s wedding” is how the Washington Post’s headline described Curry.

“There are some things you come to expect from royal weddings,” the Post said. “One thing you don’t expect: That sermon.”

The Post called Curry’s 14-minute sermon a “barnstorming address.” Canada’s CBC called it the “highlight” of the royal wedding. Vox said Curry “stole the show,” adding that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were “all but upstaged” by Curry’s “fiery sermon.” And the U.K. Guardian commentary asserted that Curry’s “royal wedding sermon will go down in history as a  moment when the enduring seat of colonialism was brought before the Lord, and questioned in its own house.”

The New York Times described it as a “searing, soaring” sermon about the power of love. “With its repetition and emphasis, his sermon drew upon the devices of black ecclesiastical tradition,” the Times wrote, calling it a “striking contrast” to the bishop of London’s sermon at the 2011 royal wedding.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle during their wedding May 19. Photo: Reuters

The sermon itself never strayed far from the theme of love, even as Curry incorporated references to both the Old Testament and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., as well as black spirituals. The message appeared to resonate with the royal couple, with Prince Harry at one point wiping tears from his cheeks while his bride’s smile widened.

The media attention to Curry’s sermon had been intense since the moment on May 12 that he was announced as preacher.

Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle have asked that The Most Reverend Michael Bruce Curry, the 27th Presiding Bishop and Primate of The Episcopal Church, give the address at their wedding : https://t.co/a14L7JGcAd #RoyalWedding pic.twitter.com/njqCaN55Gr

— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) May 12, 2018

It was an unexpected choice, given that royal wedding sermons typically are delivered by clergy in the Church of England, which, like the Episcopal Church, is a province of the Anglican Communion. Much of the reaction focused on the fact that Markle is a biracial American actress and on Curry’s status as the Episcopal Church’s the first black presiding bishop.

In the flurry of news stories about Curry leading up to the wedding, he sometimes was mistakenly identified as a “Chicago bishop” – he was born in Chicago but grew up in Buffalo, New York – and confusion about church hierarchy and titles may have played a role in some outlets diminishing Curry slightly, as merely “a black Episcopal priest,” for example.

Many also noted his emphasis on applying the Christian faith and Jesus’ teachings to contemporary social justice issues, part of what Curry often calls the “Jesus Movement.” Curry didn’t shy away from such issues in his sermon, asking those gathered to “imagine a world where love is the way.”

The Most Rev Bishop Michael Curry, primate of the Episcopal Church, delivers the sermon at the royal wedding. Photo: Reuters

“Imagine our governments and nations when love is the way,” he said. “When love is the way, then no child would go to bed hungry in this world every again. When love is the way, we will let justice roll down like a mighty stream and righteousness like an ever-flowing brook. When love is the way, poverty would become history. When love is the way, the earth will be a sanctuary. When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields down by the riverside to study war no more.”

As the buzz grew leading up to the ceremony, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby called Curry a “brilliant pastor.” Afterward, Welby, who officiated at the wedding, told Sky News he had spoken to members of the royal family, whose reaction to Curry’s sermon was overwhelmingly positive.

“I think what we saw in that is that preaching is not a past art, that the use of language to communicate the good news of Jesus Christ just blew the place open,” Welby said. “It was fantastic. And you could see people just caught up in it, and excited by it.”

The sermon also captured the imagination of some British tabloid headline writers, who borrowed Curry’s light-hearted line “Two people fell in love and we all showed up” for their covers. The Sun even gave Curry the pun-kissed new title of “Frock Star.”

Some of the praise come from unexpected sources. Former Labour Party leader Ed Miliband, an atheist, tweeted, “Rev. Michael Curry could almost make me a believer.”

Rev Michael Curry could almost make me a believer

— Ed Miliband (@Ed_Miliband) May 19, 2018

“Still reeling from Rev. Curry,” British TV host Piers Morgan tweeted. “What a guy!”

Wow. Still reeling from Rev Curry.
What a moment. What a guy!
He may have gone on a bit long but as my youngest son just rang to say: ‘Dad, imagine being a black American watching this wedding? It’s historic – and brilliant.’ He’s right. pic.twitter.com/JkPM8E4xeS

— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) May 19, 2018

The sermon even caught the attention of NBC’s “Saturday Night Live,” which dressed up cast member Kenan Thompson as Curry for a short parody during the “Weekend Update” sketch on May 19.

Curry gave his own take on the wedding and his sermon during an appearance the next day on NPR’s “Weekend Edition.” The sermon took its cues from the Bible passages that the couple chose, though he also hopes the message resonates beyond the walls of St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.

“I hope it was a message for all of us, because all of us no matter our political persuasion, no matter our social class, beyond all of that we all are fundamentally, children of God, and that means we’re part of God’s human family if you will,” he told NPR. “It means that we must always find ways to better the human condition, find ways to make a world where there’s room and space for all of us.”

The cover of “Crazy Christians,” by Presiding Bishop Michael Curry.

The global exposure generated by Curry’s sermon already has brought renewed attention to his two books, “Crazy Christians” and “Songs My Grandma Sang.” It also could create unique opportunities for evangelism by the Episcopal Church, and some congregations say they already are seeing a modest impact.

St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in San Diego, California, posted a Facebook ad linking to Curry’s sermon for the 24 hours leading up to its 10:30 a.m. service on May 20. During the service, “I asked if anyone had come because of the sermon. Three young people in the back waved their hands,” St. Paul’s Dean Penny Bridges said in an email.

“There was a very positive buzz among the congregation yesterday too, and people reported getting messages from non-church-going friends who were curious.”

Proud day for Episcopalians to have our leader represent the heart of our faith on such a visible stage #ProudEpiscopalian

— Julia Kirt (@JuliaKirt) May 20, 2018

Some Episcopalians have been reacting to Curry’s sermon on social media by using the hashtag #proudEpiscopalian, and St. Bart’s Episcopal Church in New York is hoping the excitement will increase turnout at the congregation’s “Bring a Friend to Church” Sunday on June 3.

“We are now developing messaging that encourages parishioners to invite friends who may have been inspired by Bishop Curry’s preaching on Saturday,” said Kara Flannery, the congregation’s director of communications.

Two weeks earlier, Curry had spoken on discipleship at the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Austin, Texas, the city where General Convention kicks off on July 5. So it seemed natural for The Rev. Morgan Allen, rector of Good Shepherd, to make Curry’s royal wedding sermon the focal point of his own sermon on May 20.

“Wow, what a weekend to be Episcopalian!” Allen said.

– David Paulsen is an editor and reporter for the Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at dpaulsen@episcopalchurch.org.

Carlye J. Hughes elected Diocese of Newark’s 11th bishop

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:37pm

The Rev. Carlye J. Hughes was elected the 11th bishop of the Diocese of Newark during a special convention on May 19, 2018, at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, New Jersey. Photo: Nina Nicholson/Diocese of Newark

[Episcopal Diocese of Newark] The Rev. Carlye J. Hughes was chosen 11th bishop of the Diocese of Newark during a special convention on May 19 at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, New Jersey. 

The first woman and first African-American to be elected bishop in the Diocese of Newark, Hughes, 59, is currently rector of Trinity Episcopal Church in Fort Worth, Texas, the Diocese of Fort Worth, and was one of three nominees.

In order to be elected, a candidate needed to receive a simple majority of votes from both the clergy and the lay delegates, voting separately as orders in the same balloting round. Hughes was elected on the first ballot, receiving 62 of 116 clergy votes and 141 of 241 lay votes.

The other two nominees were:

Hughes was ordained a priest in 2005 after graduating from Virginia Theological Seminary, and has served as rector of Trinity Episcopal Church in the continuing Diocese of Fort Worth since 2012. No stranger to the northeast, her first call was to St. James’ Church on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Before ordination, she worked as a corporate trainer. She is married to David Smedley. More about the Rev. Carlye J. Hughes.

Pending consent of a majority of the bishops with jurisdiction and the diocesan standing committees, Hughes will be ordained and consecrated September 22, 2018, at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark. Presiding Bishop Michael Curry will preside.

-Nina Nicholson is the director of communications for the Diocese of Newark. 

El Obispo primado Michael Curry comparte su amor de Jesús con el mundo al predicar en la boda real

Sun, 05/20/2018 - 9:27am

El príncipe Harry y Meghan Markle en la capilla de San Jorge del castillo de Windsor durante la ceremonia de su boda el 19 de mayo de 2018. Foto de Jonathan Brady/REUTERS.

[Episcopal News Service – Windsor, Reino Unido] Cuando millones de personas en todo el mundo sintonizaron sus receptores para ver y celebrar la boda real del príncipe Harry y la actriz estadounidense Meghan Markle, se enfrentaron también a uno de los predicadores más dinámicos que la feliz pareja pudo haber elegido para sus nupcias.

El obispo primado Michael Curry, el líder afroamericano de la Iglesia Episcopal en Estados Unidos, habló apasionadamente durante 13 minutos acerca del poder del amor.

“El desaparecido Dr. Martin Luther King dijo una vez, y lo cito: ‘Debemos descubrir el poder del amor, el poder redentor del amor, y cuando hagamos eso convertiremos a este viejo mundo en un mundo nuevo. Porque el amor es la única vía’.

“Hay poder en el amor. No lo subestimemos”, dijo el Obispo Primado. “Cualquiera que se haya enamorado alguna vez, sabe lo que quiero decir. Pero piensen en el amor, en cualquiera de sus formas o experiencias. En verdad uno se siente bien al ser amado y al expresar amor. Hay algo acertado en esto y existe una razón.

El obispo primado Michael Curry predicó durante la boda del príncipe Harry y Meghan Markle en la capilla de San Jorge del castillo de Windsor, Inglaterra. Foto de Owen Humphreys/REUTERS

“El amor, el amor es la única vía. Hay un poder en el amor. No lo subestimen, ni lo sentimentalicen demasiado. Hay poder en el amor. Si no me crees, piensa en el momento en que te enamoraste por primera vez, [y como] el mundo entero parecía girar en torno tuyo y a la persona amada.

“Hay poder en el amor, pero no sólo en su forma romántica, sino en cualquier forma, en cualquier forma de amar, de tal manera que cuando estás enamorado y lo sabes, cuando alguien te quiere y lo sabes, cuando amas y lo demuestras, realmente sienta bien, hay algo ideal en eso. Y hay una razón para ello. La razón tiene que ver con la fuente, fuimos creados por un poder amoroso y nuestras vidas estaban diseñadas y están diseñadas para ser vividas en ese amor. Es por eso que estamos aquí.

“En última instancia, la fuente del amor es Dios mismo. Allí donde se encuentra el verdadero amor, está Dios mismo… Hay poder en el amor para ayudar y para sanar cuando ninguna otra cosa puede hacerlo. Hay poder en el amor para mejorar y para liberar cuando ninguna otra cosa podrá hacerlo, hay poder en el amor para mostrarnos la manera de vivir.

“Pero el amor no es sólo acerca de una joven pareja. No es sólo acerca de una joven pareja con la que celebramos y nos regocijamos”.

A partir de ahí, el Obispo Primado se refirió al Movimiento de Jesús.

“Jesús comenzó el movimiento más revolucionario de toda la historia humana. Un movimiento basado en el amor incondicional de Dios por el mundo. Y un movimiento que encarga a las personas a vivir y a amar, y al hacerlo cambia no sólo nuestras vidas, sino la vida misma del mundo en sí Estoy hablando de poder, de genuino poder para cambiar al mundo”.

Él siguió hablando acerca de la redención y del amor altruista y sacrificial.

“Jesús sacrificó su vida por el bien de los demás, por el bienestar del mundo. Por nosotros. Tal es el amor. El amor no es egoísta ni egocéntrico, el amor puede ser sacrificial. Y al operar de esta manera se hace redentor. Esa vía de amor altruista, sacrificial y redentor cambia vidas. Y puede cambiar a este mundo… Piensen e imaginen un mundo donde el amor sea la vía. Imaginen nuestros hogares y familias, donde el amor es la vía. Imagínense barrios y comunidades donde el amor sea la vía. Imagínense gobiernos y naciones donde el amor sea la vía. Imagínense empresas y comercio donde el amor sea la vía. Imagínense a este viejo mundo fatigado cuando el amor sea la vía… altruista, sacrificial, redentor. Entonces ningún niño se acostaría hambriento en este mundo nunca más. Cuando el amor  sea la vía dejaremos que la justicia fluya como un torrente impetuoso y la equidad como un arroyo inagotable”. (El sermón completo se encuentra aquí en vídeo y texto).

El obispo primado Michael Curry predicó durante la boda del príncipe Harry y Meghan Markle en la capilla de San Jorge del castillo de Windsor, Inglaterra. Foto de Owen Humphreys/REUTERS

“Hoy hubo una boda real y una joven pareja entregó mutuamente sus vidas ante Dios y ante el pueblo de Dios, no sólo en la capilla, sino a través del mundo… Y yo les doy las gracias por sus oraciones por ellos y sus continuas oraciones por ellos y por mí y por el Arzobispo”, dijo el Obispo Primado en una entrevista en video con Episcopal News Service después del oficio.

Fue una alegría, dijo él, ver a personas de todo el país y del mundo “regocijándose y felices juntos”. Dentro de la capilla, los invitados podían oír a la gente aplaudiendo afuera.

“Cuando la pareja recitó sus votos, la multitud prorrumpió en aplausos. En verdad que esto fue algo como el Día de Pentecostés, y la gente lo oyó en muchas lenguas diferentes, en muchas culturas diferentes, de muchas maneras diferentes, y eso es algo para regocijarse”, afirmó Curry.

Unos 150.000 entusiastas simpatizantes que inundaban las calles de Windsor, y que siguieron la ceremonia en vivo en sus teléfonos o en grandes pantallas estacionadas a lo largo de toda la ruta de la procesión, quedaron obviamente cautivadas por el mensaje carismático de Curry acerca del amor de Jesús por el mundo y sus palabras de aliento para la pareja de recién casados que inmediatamente antes de la boda fueron nombrados duque y duquesa de Sussex.

El oficio comenzó al mediodía, hora local, en la capilla de San Jorge [St. George’s] del castillo de Windsor, a 33 kilómetros al oeste de Londres. De muchas maneras, las celebraciones del día fueron un típico despliegue de la pompa británica, pero algunos elementos, incluido el papel central de Curry y la elección del pastel de boda, se apartaron de la tradición.

Los predicadores en las bodas reales suelen ser miembros del alto clero de la Iglesia de Inglaterra.

La novia recorrió el pasillo de la iglesia mientras la soprano galesa Elin Manahan Thomas cantaba “Eterna fuente de la luz divina” de G. F. Händel. Y el príncipe Carlos fue quien entregó la novia a su hijo el príncipe Harry, mientras la madre de la novia, Doria Ragland, miraba la escena con lágrimas en los ojos.

Entre las celebridades invitadas se encontraban Elton John, David y Victoria Beckham, George y Amal Clooney, Serena Williams y Alexis Ohanian, Carey Mulligan y Marcus Mumford, Oprah Winfrey e Idris Elba. La novia llevaba un vestido diseñado por Clare Waight Keller para Givenchy. En lugar del tradicional pastel de frutas que se espera en una boda real, la pareja escogió al repostero estadounidense Claire Ptak para crear un pastel de limón con flor de saúco que incorporara los vivos sabores de la primavera, cubierto con crema de mantequilla y decorado con flores frescas.

Luego del oficio, Curry y su esposa, Sharon, se unieron a la pareja y a otros 600 invitados en el salón de San Jorge del castillo de Windsor para una recepción-almuerzo ofrecida por la reina Isabel II.

La capilla de San Jorge ha sido escenario de bodas reales durante siglos. La capilla tiene estatuto de “royal peculiar”es decir, un lugar de culto que cae directamente bajo la jurisdicción del monarca británico, en lugar de un obispo.

El Rvdmo. David Conner, deán de la capilla, dirigió el oficio del 19 de mayo según una versión de 1966 de la liturgia del matrimonio del Libro de Oración Común, mientras el arzobispo de Cantórbery, Justin Welby, como líder de la Iglesia de Inglaterra, presidió la boda real y solemnizó el matrimonio.

El príncipe Harry Meghan Markle en la capilla de San Jorge del castillo de Windsor durante su oficio de bodas dirigido por el arzobispo de Cantórbery Justin Welby. Foto de Owen Humphreys/REUTERS

Markle fue bautizada por Welby y luego confirmada en una ceremonia privada en marzo.

La Reina es la suprema gobernante de la Iglesia de Inglaterra, que es parte de la Comunión Anglicana, y los miembros de la familia real se espera que sean miembros activos de la Iglesia.

La música coral del oficio estuvo a cargo del coro de la capilla de San Jorge, bajo la dirección de James Vivian, organista y maestro de cantores. Otros músicos incluyeron al cellista de 19 años Sheku Kanneh-Mason y al Coro del Reino [Kingdom Choir], un grupo cristiano de góspel dirigido por Karen Gibson. La orquesta fue dirigida por Christopher Warren-Green e incluyó músicos de la Orquesta Nacional de la BBC de Gales, la Orquesta de Cámara Iglesia y la Orquesta Filarmónica. La soprano Elin Manahan Thomas, el trompetista David Blackadder y el organista Luke Bond se incorporaron a la orquesta. Trompetistas oficiales, provenientes de todos los rangos de la Banda de la Caballería de la Casa Real,  ofrecieron apoyo ceremonial.

Voces y trompetas se combinaron para acompañar a la radiante novia hasta el altar al son de la majestuosa música del conocido himno “Fui feliz”[I was Glad], compuesto por C. Hubert Parry para la coronación de Eduardo VII, el padre del tatarabuelo del príncipe Harry.

Entre los himnos que se cantaron en el oficio estaban “Señor Jesús, eterno rey” [Lord of All Hopefulness] y “Dios de gracia, Dios de gloria” [Guide Me, O Thou Great Redeemer]. El orden del oficio se encuentra aquí.

Luego de la ceremonia, la novia y el novio salieron del castillo en un coche de caballos descubierto Ascot Landau, para una procesión por las calles de Windsor.

Mientras las calles de Windsor se animaban con las celebraciones, los festejos de la boda real se extendían mucho más allá del castillo de Windsor y sus áreas circundantes.

Iglesias anglicanas y episcopales de todo el mundo, que remontan sus orígenes a la Iglesia de Inglaterra, también celebraron eventos y oficios locales para honrar a la feliz pareja.

-Matthew Davies cubrió la boda en directo. Lynette Wilson es jefa de redacción de Episcopal News Service. Traducción de Vicente Echerri.

Video & Text: Presiding Bishop’s royal wedding sermon

Sat, 05/19/2018 - 11:19am

[Episcopal News Service – Windsor, U.K.] This video was recorded on one of the large public screens stationed along the procession route in Windsor, where 150,000 well-wishers thronged the streets.

“The Power of Love”—A Sermon
by the Most Rev. Michael B. Curry
for
The Marriage of
HRH Prince Henry of Wales & Ms. Meghan Markle
Saturday, May 19, 2018 

And now in the name of our loving, liberating, and life-giving God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Amen.

From the Song of Solomon, in the Bible:

Set me as a seal upon your heart,

as a seal upon your arm;

for love is (as) strong as death,

passion fierce as the grave.

Its flashes are flashes of fire,

a raging flame.

Many waters cannot quench love,

neither can floods drown it (out).

Song of Songs 8:6-7

i

The late Dr. Martin Luther King once said, and I quote:

       “We must discover the power of love,

     the redemptive power of love.

And when we discover that, we will be able to make of this old world

a new world.  Love is the only way.”

There’s power in love. Don’t underestimate it. Don’t even over-sentimentalize it. There’s power, power in love.  If you don’t believe me, think about a time when you first fell in love.  The whole world seemed to center around you, and your beloved.  Oh, there’s power, power in love.  Not just in its romantic forms, but any form, any shape, of love.  There’s a certain sense, in which when you are loved, and you know it, when someone cares for you and you know it, when you love and you show it, it actually feels right.  There’s something right about it.  And there’s a reason for it.

The reason has to do with the source.  We were made by a power of love.  And our lives were meant, and are meant to be lived in that love.  That’s why we are here.  Ultimately the source of love is God himself.

The source of all of our lives.

As an old medieval poem puts it:
“Where true love is found, God himself is there.”
1st John in the New Testament says it this way.

       “Beloved, let us love one another,

because love is from God;

Everyone who loves is born of God

Whoever does not love does not know God

For God is love.” (1John 4:4-8)

There’s power in love.

There’s power in love to help and heal when nothing else can.

There’s power in love to lift up and liberate when nothing else will.

There’s power in love to show us the way to live

“Set me as a seal on your heart

A seal on your arm”

For love, it’s as strong as death.

But love is not only about a young couple.

Now the power of love is demonstrated by the fact that we’re all here.

Two young people fell in love, and we all showed up!

But it’s not just for and about a young couple who we rejoice with.

It’s more than that.

Jesus of Nazareth on one occasion was asked by a lawyer to sum up the essence of the teachings of Moses.  And he read back, and reached back into the Hebrew scriptures to Deuteronomy and Leviticus, and Jesus said:

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength.

This is the first, and great commandment.

And the second is like it.

Love your neighbor as yourself.

And then in Matthew’s version, he added, he said:

         On these two, love of God and love of neighbor, hang all the law, all the prophets

Everything that Moses wrote, everything in the holy prophets, everything in the Scriptures, everything that God has been trying to tell the world!

Love God!

Love your neighbors.

And while you’re at it, love yourself.

Someone once said that Jesus began the most revolutionary movement in all of human history.  A movement grounded in the unconditional love of God for the world.  And a movement mandating people to live that love.  And in so doing, to change not only their lives, but the very life of the world itself.

I’m talking about some power.

Real power.

Power to change the world.

And if you don’t believe me, well, there were some old slaves in America’s Antebellum South, who explained the dynamic power of love and why it has the power to transform.  They explained it this way – they sang a spiritual, even in the midst of their captivity.  It’s one that says:

         “There is a balm in Gilead”

A healing balm, something that can make things right –

         “There is a balm in Gilead

To make the wounded whole

There is a balm in Gilead

To heal the sin-sick soul.”

And one of the stanzas actually explains why – they said:

         “If you cannot preach like Peter,

And you cannot pray like Paul,

You  tell the love of Jesus,

How he died to save us all.”

Oh, that’s the balm in Gilead!

This way of love, it is the way of life!  They got it!

He died to save us all!  He didn’t die for anything he could get out of it!

Jesus did not get an honorary doctorate for dying!

He wasn’t getting anything out of it!

He gave up his life, he sacrificed his life for the good of others, for the good of the other, for the well-being of the world, for us!

That’s what love is.

Love is not selfish and self-centered.

Love can be sacrificial.

And in so doing, becomes redemptive.

And that way of unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive love, changes lives.

And it can change this world.

If you don’t believe me, just stop and think, or imagine.

Think, and imagine.

Well, think and imagine a world where love is the way.

Imagine our homes and families when love is the way.

Imagine neighborhoods and communities when love is the way.

Imagine our governments and nations when love is the way.

Imagine business and commerce when love is the way.

Imagine this tired old world when love is the way.

When love is the way, unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive.

When love is the way, then no child would go to bed hungry in this world ever again.

When love is the way, we will let justice roll down like a mighty stream and righteousness like an ever-flowing brook.

When love is the way, poverty would become history.

When love is the way, the earth will be a sanctuary.

When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields down by the riverside

to study war no more.

When love is the way, there’s plenty good room.  Plenty good room.  For all of God’s children.

And when love is the way, we actually treat each other – well, like we’re actually family.

When love is the way, we know that God is the source of us all, and we are brothers and sisters.  Children of God.

My brothers and sisters, that’s a new heaven, a new earth, a new world.

A new human family.

And let me tell you something, old Solomon was right in the Old Testament, that’s fire.

Teilhard de Chardin – and with this, I will sit down, we gotta get you all married.

French Jesuit Teilhard de Chardin was arguably one of the great minds, great spirits of the 20th century.  A Jesuit, Roman Catholic priest, a scientist, a scholar, a mystic.  In some of his writings he said, from his scientific background, as well as his theological one.  Some of his writings he said, as others have, that the discovery, or invention, or harnessing of fire was one of the great scientific and technological discoveries in all of human history.

Fire to a great extent made human civilization possible.

Fire made it possible to cook food, and to provide sanitary ways of eating, which reduced the spread of disease in its time.

Fire made it possible to heat and warm environments and thereby made human migration around the world a possibility, even into colder climates.

Fire made it possible – there was no Bronze Age without fire.  No Iron Age without fire.  No Industrial Revolution without fire.

The advances of science and technology are greatly dependent on the human ability and capacity to take fire and use it for human good.

Anybody get here in a car today?  An automobile?

Nod your heads if you did, I’m guessing, I know there were some carriages.

For those of us who came in cars, fire, and the controlled, harnessed fire made that possible.

I know that the Bible says, and I believe it, that Jesus walked on the water, but I have to tell you, I didn’t walk across the Atlantic Ocean to get here!

Controlled fire in that plane got me here!

Fire makes it possible for us to text and Tweet and email and Instagram and Facebook and socially be dysfunctional with each other!

Fire makes all of that possible!

And de Chardin said fire was one of the greatest discoveries in all of human history.

And he then went on to say that if humanity ever harnesses the energy of fire again, if humanity ever captures the energy of love, it will be the second time in history that we have discovered fire.

Dr. King was right.

We must discover love.

The redemptive power of love.

And when we do that, we will make of this old world a new world.

My brother, my sister,

God love you, God bless you.

And may God hold us all,

in those Almighty hands of love.

 

Royal wedding preacher Presiding Bishop Michael Curry shares his love of Jesus with the world

Sat, 05/19/2018 - 8:25am

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle during their wedding in Windsor, Britain, May 19, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Brady

[Episcopal News Service – Windsor, U.K.] When millions of people around the world tuned in to witness and celebrate the royal wedding of Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markle, they were also treated to one of the most dynamic preachers the happy couple could have chosen for their nuptials.

Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, the African-American leader of the U.S.-based Episcopal Church, spoke passionately for more than 12 minutes about the power of love.

“There’s power in love. Do not underestimate it. Anyone who has ever fallen in love, knows what I mean. But think about love in any form or experience of it. It actually feels good to be loved, and to express love. There is something right about it. And there’s a reason.

“Love, love is the only way. There’s power in love. Don’t underestimate. Don’t even over sentimentalize it. There’s power in love,” said the presiding bishop. “If you don’t believe me, think about a time when you first fell in love, the whole world seemed to center around you and your beloved.

“There’s power in love, not in just its romantic form, but any form, in any shape of love there’s a certain sense that when you are love and you know it, when someone cares for you and you know it. When you love and you show it, it actually feels right, there’s something right about it. And there’s a reason for it. The reason has to do with the source, we were made by a power of love and our lives were meant and are meant to be lived in that love. That’s why we are here.

“Ultimately, the source of love is God himself. Where true love is found, God himself is there …  There’s power in love to help and heal when nothing else can. There’s power in love to lift up and liberate when nothing else will, there’s power in love to show us the way to live.”

“But love is not only about a young couple … it’s not just about a young couple we celebrate and rejoice with.”

From there, the presiding bishop referenced the Jesus Movement.

“Jesus began the most revolutionary movement in all of human history. A movement grounded in the unconditional love of God and for the world. And a movement mandating people to live and love, and in so doing, to change not only their lives, but the very life of the world itself. I’m talking about power, real power to change the world.”

Crowds gathered to watch the royal wedding on screens throughout Windsor. Photo: Matthew Davies/ENS

Meanwhile, an estimated 150,000 well-wishers thronged the streets of Windsor, watching the ceremony broadcast live on their phones and large screens stationed along the whole procession route, clearly captivated by Curry’s charismatic message about Jesus’ love for the world and his words of encouragement for the newly married couple, named just before the wedding as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. 

The service began at noon local time at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle, 21 miles west of London. In many ways, the day’s celebrations were a typical royal display of British pageantry, but some elements, including Curry’s pivotal role and the choice of wedding cake, are a departure from tradition.

Preachers at royal weddings are usually senior clergy members in the Church of England.

The bride walked down the aisle to Eternal Source of Light Divine by G.F Handel, sung by Welsh soprano Elin Manahan Thomas and was given to Prince Harry by his father, Prince Charles of Wales. The bride’s mother Doria Ragland looked on in tears.

Celebrity guests included Elton John, David and Victoria Beckham, George and Amal Clooney, Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian Carey Mulligan and Marcus Mumford. The bride wore a dress  designed by Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy. Instead of the traditional fruitcake expected at a royal wedding, the couple selected American pastry chef Claire Ptak to create a lemon elderflower cake to incorporate the bright flavors of spring, covered with buttercream and decorated with fresh flowers.

Following the service, Curry and his wife, Sharon, joined the couple and 600 other guests at St. George’s Hall in Windsor Castle for a luncheon reception hosted by Queen Elizabeth II.

St. George’s Chapel has hosted royal weddings for centuries. The chapel is known as a “royal peculiar,” a place of worship that falls directly under the jurisdiction of the British monarch, rather than a bishop.

The Rt. Rev. David Conner, chapel dean, conducted the May 19 service according to a 1966 version of the liturgy of matrimony from the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, while Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, as head of the Church of England, presided over the royal wedding and solemnized the marriage.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle during their wedding service, conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby in Windsor, Britain. Owen Humphreys/REUTERS

Markle was baptized by Welby and then confirmed in a private ceremony in March.

The queen is the supreme governor of the Church of England, which is part of the Anglican Communion, and members of the royal family are expected to be active members in the church.

Choral music at the service was performed by the choir of St. George’s Chapel, under the direction of James Vivian, the organist and master of the choristers. Other musicians included 19-year-old cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason and the Kingdom Choir, a Christian gospel group conducted by Karen Gibson. The orchestra was conducted by Christopher Warren-Green and included musicians from the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the English Chamber Orchestra and the Philharmonia Orchestra. Soprano Elin Manahan Thomas, trumpeter David Blackadder and organist Luke Bond joined the orchestra. State trumpeters drawn from all ranks of the Band of the Household Cavalry provided ceremonial support.

Voices and trumpets combined to usher in the radiant bride to the majestic sounds of C. Hubert Parry’s well-known anthem, “I Was Glad,” composed for the coronation of Edward VII, Prince Harry’s great-great-great-grandfather.

Hymns sung during the service included Lord of All Hopefulness and Guide Me, O Thou Great Redeemer.  The order of service is here.

Following the ceremony, the bride and bridegroom left Windsor Castle in an Ascot Landau carriage for a procession through the streets of Windsor.

As the streets of Windsor came alive with celebrations, the royal wedding festivities stretched far beyond Windsor Castle and its surrounding areas.

Anglican and Episcopal churches around the world, which trace their origins to the Church of England, also held local events and services to honor the happy couple.

Video: Presiding Bishop Michael, Archbishop Justin speak ahead of the Royal Wedding

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 4:32pm

The following clip is taken from an interview with Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby on the eve of the royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Courtesy of Press Association.

Presiding Bishop’s sermon at royal wedding is must-see TV for many Episcopalians

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 3:38pm

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive at Windsor Castle on May 18, a day ahead of their wedding. Photo: REUTERS/Hannah McKay

[Episcopal News Service] With all due respect to the bride and groom, the preacher will be the real star of the royal wedding in the eyes of many Episcopalians.

Congregations across the United States are planning viewing parties, and there’s even a bingo card created by the Diocese of Fort Worth featuring some of the phrases Presiding Bishop Michael Curry is expected to deploy when he preaches at the wedding of Prince Harry, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and sixth in line to the British throne, and American actress Meghan Markle at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle on May 19.

It’s hard to deny “this huge opportunity for evangelism that just landed in all our laps,” said Katie Sherrod, Diocese of Fort Worth communications director.

She was part of the team that came up with the “Michael Curry Bingo” card based on what Episcopalians have come to expect in a typical Curry sermon, such as references to the “Jesus Movement” and “loving, liberating and life-giving.” But will he change things up for the royal couple?

“It is a wedding, so we know he’s going to be talking about love,” Sherrod said. “I just can’t imagine him not going to ‘We are all beloved children of God,’ a message that the world is desperate to hear.”

Live coverage of the royal wedding can be viewed online via PBS here and BBC America here. On Episcopal social media, follow the event on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Full Episcopal News Service coverage can be found here.

Kensington Palace announced May 12 that the couple invited Curry to preach at the service, a departure from tradition for British royal weddings where sermons are usually given by senior Church of England clergy. Dean of Windsor David Conner will conduct the service and Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will officiate.

The doors of the Episcopal Church of the Advocate in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, will open at 6:30 a.m. Eastern time, a half-hour before the noon wedding begins in England. As soon as the news of Curry’s address went public, the church’s senior warden said, “‘We have to have a party,’” said the Rev. Lisa G. Fischbeck, vicar.

“There’s this really funny blend of dread at getting up that early on a Saturday and excitement,” she said. Women are invited to wear hats and men ascots, and tea and coffee and scones and strawberries will be served.

“It’s splendid. … There seems to be such excitement about it from Episcopalians who are wondering whether he’ll stay in the pulpit, and wondering if he’ll stay to seven minutes, to have this joyful buzz,” said Fischbeck, who appeared live on BBC News earlier this week.

Grace Cathedral in San Francisco plans to host a short carillon concert at noon local time (after the royal wedding) to celebrate the newly married couple. “We love weddings,” the cathedral says on its website, though the Rev. Ellen Clark-King acknowledged to Episcopal News Service that this is no ordinary wedding, especially for members of her congregation.

“I would say the interest has definitely gone up since we knew about Bishop Michael’s involvement in the proceedings,” said Clark-King, who is the cathedral’s executive pastor and canon for social justice. “A lot of people who would not be particularly interested in a royal wedding want to know what he has to say.”

On the other side of the United States, St. Bart’s Episcopal Church in New York City plans to hold a “Royal Wedding Brunch” for those who don’t want to wake up early to watch Curry’s sermon live. A recording of the wedding will be shown at 1 p.m. accompanied by sandwiches, cookies and tea.

“Hats welcome!” the invitation says.

The Diocese of Fort Worth started thinking about opportunities for evangelism as soon as Curry was announced as preacher. The diocese had seen a surge in visits to its website in April when former first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral was held at an Episcopal church in an adjacent diocese. The diocese received 25,000 clicks just on its page outlining what Episcopalians believe.

“If Barbara Bush’s funeral did that, what is the royal wedding going to do?” Sherrod said.

In 2015, when Curry was installed as presiding bishop, Sherrod’s team produced an infographic based on a fun list of 10 things you typically hear in one of his sermons released by the Diocese of  North Carolina where Curry served as diocesan bishop. In preparation for the royal wedding, Fort Worth dusted off the infographic and came up with the idea of expanding it into a bingo card. As of May 18, the diocese’s post promoting the bingo card had been shared more than 200 times.

The challenge of writing a wedding sermon isn’t quite the same as writing a sermon for Holy Eucharist on Sunday, but Sherrod thinks Curry’s regular emphasis on God’s love will be a common thread.

“He is such a genuine man of such integrity that I can’t imagine he’s going to change very much,” Sherrod said. “I think they are very lucky to have him as a preacher.”

She also has been working with congregations to ensure their websites are updated and informative for people who might be interested in learning more about the Episcopal Church after hearing Curry speak.

“The next day is Pentecost, so it’s not like people aren’t busy around here, but I just think this is an opportunity to reach people who are hungry for the message Michael Curry is bound to deliver to them,” she said.

– David Paulsen is an editor and reporter for the Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at dpaulsen@episcopalchurch.org. Lynette Wilson is managing editor and can be reached at lwilson@episcopalchurch.org.

New Zealand church could appoint climate commissioner after Synod motion

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 3:13pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia is set to appoint a climate commissioner as it steps up its fight against climate change. The move comes after two environmental motions were combined into a composite motion at the province’s General Synod earlier this month.

Read the full article here.

Anglican Alliance stands ready to assist after Ebola outbreak confirmed in Congo

Fri, 05/18/2018 - 3:10pm

[Anglican Communion News Service] The World Health Organization has expressed concern after 44 Ebola virus disease cases were reported in the Democratic Republic of Congo. “We are profoundly concerned to hear about the recent outbreak of Ebola in DRC,” the Rev. Rachel Carnegie, co-executive director of the Anglican Alliance, which helps to co-ordinate the activities of Anglican relief and development agencies, said.

Read the full article here.

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