Greetings to all,
Today’s readings are from the Book of Daniel from chapter 13 and the Gospel of John from chapter 11.
The story in Daniel is about a woman who loved God and her name was Susanna. Susanna was a very beautiful woman and she was married to Joakim. The story is about two elders who lusted after her and made plans to take advantage of her. The story is really about truth, justice and faith. The two elders fabricated a story that Susanna was with another man. They gave false witness against her and by Moses Law, she would be put to death. Susanna had faith in God, the truth made known and justice prevailed. Two men giving the same testimony would be the deciding factor and discovering that their stories were not the same set her free and brought judgment and death to them.
In John’s Gospel, the Pharisees question Jesus about his validity. Jesus made the statement, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but have the light of life.” The Pharisees accuse Jesus of testifying in his own behalf. Jesus then tells them that he and his father both testify in his behalf. They then ask; where is your father? Jesus answered, “You know neither me nor my father. If you knew me you would know my father also.”
Jesus came to share his light with the world. In order to see the truth you must first turn on the light. When the light is turned on you are not able hide from it. This light cannot be dimmed or extinguished, because, it is the one true light that lives within.
Peace & Blessings,
The Old Catholic Church, Province of the United States, is a nascent American denomination with deep historical roots. Several independent Catholic jurisdictions across the United States, yearning for greater community and to model a different way of being Catholic, came together in a series of discussion. In September 2010, these jurisdictions formally became The Old Catholic Church, Province of the United States (TOCCUSA).
Our historical roots are not only embedded in the teachings of Jesus the Christ and the ancient church, but also in the Old Catholic Churches in Europe, which began as a reform movement after the First Vatican Council in 1870. In 1889 the break from Rome was formalized with the formation of the Utrecht Union of Old Catholic Churches. Claiming the name “Old Catholic”, the Utrecht Union reclaimed the ancient, undivided, and apostolic church before rancorous divisions and legalistic dogma severed the continuity of the Christian tradition and inhibited the movement and inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
The ecclesiology of TOCCUSA is modeled after the Utrecht Union of Old Catholic Churches. That means we are episcopal and synodal in structure. The local church gathers around its bishop whose authority flows from election by the diocesan synod, which is composed of clergy and laity. Clergy and laity have equal voice and vote on all matters of local and national church life. As Catholics, we celebrate the seven sacraments. Recognizing that the sacraments are a means to God’s mysterious, inclusive, and abundant grace and that God withholds that grace from no one, so we bar no one from any sacrament: all baptized Christians are welcome at Eucharist, same-gender couples are welcome to celebrate the sacrament of matrimony, LGBT persons and women are welcome and encouraged to the holy orders of deacon, priest, and bishop.
Fully embracing Jesus’ declaration in John 10.10, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly”, the Old Catholic Church takes seriously its task to proclaim the gospel of freedom and life. These are indeed the cornerstones of Old Catholic identity and mission. In serving the world in the 21st Century, we ask ourselves, how do we teach and proclaim life and freedom in a world that equates a free life with hedonism. As we struggle to live into this question through mission and ministry, we do so committed to celebrating diversity: the diversity found among humanity and the diversity of gifts bestowed by the Holy Spirit. The movement called the Old Catholic Church in general, and The Old Catholic Church, Province of the United States, in particular, remains steadfast in building unity in diversity within our own church and in the world through a commitment to ecumenism. It is in embracing our diversity that we find our strength and heal our world.
We are The Old Catholic Church, Province of the United States:
Welcoming & Inclusive Church
Serving the Modern World
+Robert T. Fuentes Moderator, TOCCUSA
Bishop, Old Catholic Diocese of Napa
Chairperson for the House of Delegates
National Assembly 2013
This year, the Diocese of New England will be hosting the National Assembly.
September 19-22, 2013
Holy Family Passionist Retreat Center
303 Tunxis Road
West Hartford, CT 06107-3119
Phone: 860.521.0440 | Fax: 860.521.1929
- September 2013