Secession efforts of parishes (and entire dioceses) are rife in the Episcopal Church today, but few have the weight of history so heavy on them as that of Christ Church in Savannah, Georgia.
The vestry of historic Christ Church has voted to continue in a province in good standing with the rest of the worldwide Anglican Communion by placing itself under the pastoral care of The Rt. Reverend John Guernsey, Rector of All Saint’s Church in Woodbridge, VA and a bishop of the worldwide Anglican Communion’s Province of Uganda, Africa. The vestry was unanimous in its decision.
At the 1662 Book of Common Prayer page, I quote John Wesley as stating the following:
I believe there is no Liturgy in the world, either in ancient or modern language, which breathes more of a solid, scriptural, rational piety than the Common Prayer of the Church of England.
Some of John Wesley’s ministry from that Prayer Book took place a Christ Church, as did George Whitfield’s. Anglicans aren’t the only ones with a part of their history at this church in historic Savannah.
The parish has been engaged in an ecclesiastical pas de deux with their bishop. Henry Louttit, as reported last December. That dance is over. But again history comes around; it was Louttit’s father, bishop of the Central Archdeanery of South Florida in the 1960’s, who attempted to get Bishop James Pike deposed. Much of the current tragedy of the Episcopal Church could have been avoided if Pike and his ilk had been brought to heel. But the elder Louttit was unsuccessful.
It is yet another reminder that the central mistake of the remaining conservatives in the Episcopal Church was to wait for the consecration of an openly homosexual bishop to take action either to fix or leave their church. Hopefully some of the rest of us will not wait to make the same mistake.