Thursday, November 17, 2016

Bishop’s Note: November 17, 2016 – Following the Election

Bishop Eric Menees

Last Friday, Archbishop Beach sent out the following message to the Province in the wake of the elections. I now prayerfully pass it along to you all in the Diocese of San Joaquin, for your prayerful consideration. 

“These have been historic days in the United States, and will have a ripple effect that cannot yet be predicted. Scholars will be dissecting these events for years to come, but I want to take a moment to speak to you about the next few days. Some of our members have been encouraged by this election, and some have been discouraged by its outcome.

Firstly, I want to thank the Canadian and Mexican members of our province for praying for your brothers and sisters in the United States this week. The diversity of the Anglican Church in North America is one of its strengths, and a reflection of the image of God. Being a province that spans not just political parties, but multiple nations is a unique gift, and provides helpful perspective in times such as these.

Secondly, to those in the United States, regardless of how you voted, this morning we are all even more aware of the fact that our country is in need of healing. There is a need for reconciliation across the divisions of race, ethnicity, class, and political party. While the issues are complicated, it is clear that many in our country are scared and feeling wounded. This is a time for the Church to be a refuge and an example. While living in this earthly kingdom, we must allow our citizenship in the heavenly kingdom to lead us in thought, word, and deed. The depth of this reconciliation can only be accomplished by the work of the Holy Spirit, and I call on each of us to care for one another as brothers and sisters in Christ.

Thirdly, I ask for your prayers for President-elect Donald Trump, and I ask you to continue to pray for President Barack Obama, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and President Enrique Peña Nieto. Pray that each of these leaders would govern with wisdom, care, and courage. Pray for a smooth transition, and for President-elect Trump to select wise counselors to surround him as he becomes President. Practice 1 Timothy 2:1 ("First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.") And pray for healing and reconciliation in our nation.

Lastly, I write this to you having just stepped off of a flight to Asia where I will be ministering and sharing fellowship with our Christian brothers and sisters in Singapore, India, and Nepal. I am reminded how so many around the world look to the United States for good leadership, but more importantly, for our responsibility to pray and work that the whole world will hear and have the opportunity to experience the transforming love of Jesus Christ."

Let us pray,

"Almighty God, we pray that you will lead the nations of the world into the way of righteousness; and so guide and direct our leaders, that your people may enjoy the blessings of freedom and peace. Grant that our leaders may impartially administer justice, uphold integrity and truth, restrain wickedness and vice, and maintain true religion." (Texts for Common Prayer, Prayers of the People)

Thirty-nine Articles of Religion

III. Of the going down of Christ into Hell

As Christ died for us; and was buried, so also is it to be believed, that he went down into Hell.

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