Updated: May 25, 2019
This is the first piece in a series of posts about the mission, identity, and vision for All Souls.
This plant and, Lord willing, eventual parish is not its own thing. It is not its own entity. It is a part of something bigger. As the Nicene Creed says so we confess that "we believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church." The identity of All Souls then is that of the Body of Jesus Christ. The mission then is that of the Church: to worship the Triune God; to announce, celebrate, embody, and implement the Gospel of Jesus Christ; to deliver to the world that which has been delivered to us --"That Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures”(1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
The Church is the family of God, the body of Christ, and the temple of the Holy Spirit. All baptized people are called to make Christ known as Savior and Lord, and to share in the renewing of his world.
From the Examination of "The Ordination of a Priest," 1979 Book of Common Prayer
So I'm not "starting a church" because the Church started two-thousand years ago at Pentecost. I'm not trying to figure out my mission but rather joining God's mission, which is to fill the earth with his presence, to dwell with us and in us and us in him, to make mankind, in and through Jesus, "partakers of the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). Thus, I'm not interested in novelty, that is, in doing something new but rather in joining something that is very old, ancient -- eternal. By the grace of God, I want to practice and contend for the Faith "delivered once for all to the saints" (Jude 1:3) and in doing so, that is, by following the old paths, be used by God as a part of his mission to make all things new.