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This page last updated 11 July 2004
Anglicans Online last updated 20 August 2000

Letters to AO

EVERY WEEK WE PUBLISH a selection of letters we receive in response to something you've read at Anglicans Online. Stop by and have a look at what other AO readers are thinking.

Alas, we cannot publish every letter we receive. And we won't publish letters that are anonymous, hateful, illiterate, or otherwise in our judgment do not benefit the readers of Anglicans Online. We usually do not publish letters written in response to other letters.

We edit letters to conform with standard AO house style for punctuation, but we do not change, for example, American spelling to conform to English orthography. On occasion we'll gently edit letters that are too verbose in their original form. Email addresses are included when the authors give permission to do so.

If you'd like to respond to a letter whose author does not list an email, you can send your response to Anglicans Online and we'll forward it to the writer.

Letters from 27 June to 4 July 2004

If you'd like to write a letter of your own, click here.

What did he read last week?

YOUR PUBLICATION FOR THE WEEK of June 27, 2004, opened my eyes to the true nature of the Church of England and its sister Churches around the world. It was not a comforting revelation for me to come to realize that the C of E was truly a protestant institution, and not a 'branch of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church' that I always believed it to be during my ministry.

I was rector of a large 'catholic' parish in New York where I held an ecumenical service during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Following the service, the local Roman Catholic priest took a tour of the building and said: 'Well you certainly have the externals of the catholic religion here'. I was somewhat offended by his comments, but now, some thirty years later, I have come to understand what he meant. Some Episcopal churches do look like Catholic churches, but that's where the similarity ends. The externals are there, but the substance is not. Indeed, most of our parish churches are but little more than protestant chapels of ease that look like they were catholic, but in fact are substantially nothing more than dressed up pretty places.

As difficult as this revelation has been for me, I am indebted to you for making it clear to me that I have been a protestant minister and not a catholic priest for lo these many years. It does bring tears to my eyes, but then, knowing the truth often involves pain and suffering.

The Reverend Louis V. Sharples
Retired (assisting, Church of the Good Shepherd, Hemet, California)
Perris, California, USA
30 June 2004

Email friends desired

I AM A MALAWAIAN Anglican, aged 23, seeking Anglican pen friends. I like choral music and church activity participation.

Yours Faithfully,

Mac Donald Ambali
Saint Barnabas Parish, Malawi
Blantyre, Malawi, AFRICA
1 July 2004

Help me make the most of my year in the US

I AM A VISITOR, in the USA for one year while writing a book about differences between English-origin churches in the USA and my own country. I have been attending Episcopal churches in the Great Plains, because that seems to be the most American part of America. Before I came here my pastor told me to be careful because US Episcopal churches were godless and had rewritten the Bible. I found this fascinating. I have been in the US for several months and have not yet found any godless churches or different bible. In fact, every church that I have visited (17 so far) has been devout, friendly, and very much like churches at home. Can anyone help me find one of the churches that my pastor was referring to? Google does not give useful answers for this question.

S Klebe Wermut
Hoople, North Dakota, USA (currently)
4 July 2004

Earlier letters

We launched our 'Letters to AO' section on 11 May 2003. All of our letters are in our archives.


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