Mystic Hunger and an Anglican Feast

Posted on May 9, 2024

I was a young child the first time I encountered the sign of the cross. It must have been on TV—probably watching The Sound of Music for the hundredth time. Having grown up in a staunchly non-liturgical evangelical home, I can’t imagine where else I would have ever seen such a gesture. It captivated me….

Rogation Sunday: A Rookie Anglican Guide

Posted on May 4, 2024

Rogation Sunday and the three subsequent Rogation Days commemorate Jesus’ final days on earth before his Ascension. Accordingly, these days focus on the earth, the work of agriculture, and on human dependence upon God. On Rogation Sunday we especially remember to abide in Christ the Vine, to receive his love and bear fruit in love…

10 Reasons for Anglican Optimism

Posted on June 16, 2023

When we observe the world—the sin and disbelief and conflict surrounding the church, together with the sin and disbelief and conflict within the church—it is easy to grow weary of the “changes and chances of this life” (BCP, 60). But take heart: our Lord Jesus Christ is on his throne, his Kingdom is at hand,…

Full Circle with Anglican Compass: The Editor’s Story

Posted on June 14, 2023

Becoming the Editor of Anglican Compass is a full-circle experience. It’s possible that I wouldn’t be an Anglican without Anglican Compass, much less have been ordained a priest in this tradition. I spent my first 34 years in Southern Baptist churches, after all. Only God could have orchestrated the journey by which he led me…

I Throw Me At His Feet: A Reading of George Herbert’s “The Priesthood”

Posted on March 4, 2023

As I discern my own vocation, George Herbert’s poem, The Priesthood, has helped me to understand the sacrament of ordination. Sacraments of the Church The catechism of the ACNA describes five different rites and institutions as “sacraments of the church” (see To Be A Christian, #124). These differ from the sacraments of Baptism and Holy…

What even IS a sacrament, anyway?

Posted on March 17, 2021

One of the terrible ironies of church history is that the sacraments, which are supposed to both enable and embody our unity as Christians, have often been the source of intense division. But, as one of my seminary profs (a Lutheran) reminded us, the response to this division can’t be to ignore the sacraments! In…

Baptizing a Convert from Islam with an Anglican Liturgy

Posted on April 20, 2020

I didn’t even remember the phone call. One evening when I was loafing around the house an Arabophone brother called me from a foreign country and had some questions about our small Arabophone fellowship, Kanisa. What did we believe? I answered: we had an evangelical orientation and confessed the Apostles’ and Nicene creeds. Did we…

Spiritual Communion During the COVID–19 Pandemic

Posted on March 21, 2020

We are living through what is objectively the most widespread and devastating pandemic in living memory. As of March 19, most state and local authorities are banning meetings of more than 50 people, and President Trump has counseled, along with many public health officials, that people not gather in groups of 10 or more. John…

What Do Anglicans Believe about the Sacraments? (Baptism, Holy Communion, Confirmation, Ordination, Marriage, Absolution, Anointing of the Sick)

Posted on February 10, 2020

From The ACNA Catechism The following is an excerpt from the Anglican Church in North America’s catechism, To Be a Christian: An Anglican Catechism (Crossway, 2020), pp. 55–63. You can download a PDF of the entire catechism here. Concerning Sacraments 121. What is a sacrament? A sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an…

Why Do We Baptize Babies If They Cannot Make a Profession of Faith?

Posted on January 2, 2020

Many people coming to Anglicanism stumble over infant baptism. They come for the beauty of the liturgy, the appreciation of both Word and Sacrament, of Scripture and Tradition. But for many, whether Baptist or not, infant baptism is a hang-up. There are many good reasons for such worries and many good answers—including on this site…