St. Mary's Anglican Catholic Church

Diocese of the Midwest

Catechism

The Church Catechism XV: The Incarnation Part One

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ… Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost….
We have examined the truth that Jesus Christ is the Word of God, the only Son of the Father, and, therefore, our Lord. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.(St John 1:1-2) The eternal Son of God is pure Spirit, like His Father. (St John 4:24) Yet, as St John tells us, the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us. (St John 1:14) Thus God the Son is said to have become incarnate, which is to say, .............

The Church Catechism: The Holy Catholic Church—Part I

The ninth article of the Apostles’ Creed consists of two clauses. The first affirms belief on the Holy Catholic Church. It is appropriate that this article follows directly the article concerning the Holy Ghost; for the Church is the work of the Holy Spirit of God.
The Greek word for church used in the New Testament is ecclesia, which is an assembly of persons called out for a particular purpose. But the Church/Ecclesia referred to here is no ordinary or merely human institution................

The Church Catechism: I Believe in the Holy Ghost Part III--The Filioque

The third paragraph of the Apostles’ Creed begins with the affirmation of belief in the Third Person of the Trinity, the Holy Ghost. This eighth article was to counteract those in the early Church who  denied the divinity and/or personhood of the Holy Spirit, a heresy that was called either Macedonianism (after the 4th century founder of this sect, Macedonius) or Phnematomachianism (for they were “combaters of the Spirit”). The articles of the Creed that follow each deal with some aspect of God’s Spirit’s work..............

The Church Catechism: I Believe in the Holy Ghost--Part II

Though the Old Testament speaks of the work of the Holy Ghost in numerous places, it is only with the advent of the Son of God, the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, as described in the New Testament, that the Spirit of God is made manifest as the Third Person of the Trinity. He seen as is God’s personal agent, executing of the Father’s eternal purpose to bring glory to His Son.
This is manifest throughout the Life of Christ. Christ was conceived by the Holy Ghost. (St Matthew 1:20) The Spirit was seen descending on Jesus at His Baptism in the Jordan River, which showed that the Son...................

The Church Catechism: I Believe in the Holy Ghost—Part I

The Apostles’ Creed consists of twelve articles of faith. These articles are divided into three paragraphs corresponding to the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity. The first paragraph (the briefest) deals with the Father; the second (the longest) deals with the Son; the third, which we now begin to examine, deals with the Holy Ghost and His work. The eighth article of the Apostles’ Creed merely affirms our belief in the Holy Ghost; while the Nicene Creed (“commonly so called”) provides more detail relative the Third Person of the Holy Ghost.This is an issue of terminology (at least for some)....

The Church Catechism: He Shall Come Again

The seventh article of the Apostles’ Creed deals with the Second Coming of Christ in terms of both its certainty and its purpose. On the day our Lord ascended into heaven to resume His rightful place at the Father’s right hand, two angels said to the disciples standing by: Why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. (Acts 1:11) There are some three hundred references to the Second Coming in the New Testament.....

The Church Catechism: He Ascended into Heaven

The sixth article of the Apostles Creed affirms that Jesus ascended into heaven forty days after His Resurrection. St Luke describes the Ascension in this way: And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. (St Luke 24:50-51) It was same body that was born of the Virgin Mary, nailed to the cross, and transformed and raised from the dead that was received into a cloud representing God’s heavenly glory and removed from their sight. (See St Mark 16:19; Acts 1:9-11) When we say Christ....

The Church Catechism: He Rose Again

As has been noted repeatedly, there are no dispensable articles of the Creed. However, there is one article upon which all the others rest in terms of their truth & significance; and that is the second clause of the fifth article of the Apostles’ Creed, “The third day He rose again from the dead.” By this we mean that the soul of Jesus Christ that descended to the place of departed spirits at His death was reunited with the body that lay in Joseph’s tomb. But, Christ’s body was not merely reanimated; it was also transformed into a spiritual body fit for eternal life in heaven.................

The Church Catechism: He Descended into Hell

The fifth article of the Creed consists of two clauses. “He descended into hell; the third day he rose again from the dead.” The first clause concerning Christ’s descent into the lowest parts of the earth (Ephesians 4:9) was added in the 4th century; and it has been the source of some confusion & controversy. Some churches omit the clause altogether. Part of the confusion is a problem with translation. The Old Testament Hebrew word for the place of departed spirits is sheol; while the Greek word used in the New Testament is hades. Early English translated these words using the English word hell.............

The Church Catechism: Crucified, Dead , and Buried

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ… crucified, dead, and buried….
In our examination of the fourth article of the Apostles Creed begun last month we examined the sufferings of Christ in general. Now we will examine the latter part of the article in some detail. The things Christ suffered, up to and including His death on the cross, are referred to as His passion. This term derives from the Latin passus, indicating that our Lord was passive in that He suffered at the hands of others. His betrayal (St John 13:21); His agony and bloody sweat (St Luke 22:44);...............

The Church Catechism XVII: The Sufferings of Christ

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ… who… Suffered under Pontius Pilate….
In our examination of the third article of the Apostles’ Creed we examined the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God. With the fourth article of the Creed we affirm why God the eternal Son was “made flesh.” (St John 1:14) “He suffered under Pontius Pilate.” This refers primarily to the Passion of Christ—those sufferings He endured from His agony in the Garden of Gethsemane to His last breath on the cross on Golgotha. Other that the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity.............

The Church Catechism XVI: The Incarnation Part Two

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ… Born of the Virgin Mary….
The third article of the Apostles’ Creed affirms that the Son of God came into the world through the two-fold miracle of the Virgin Birth; for Jesus Christ was “conceived of the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary.” Last month we examined our Lord’s conception by the Holy Ghost. The second part of the two-part miracle of the Incarnation is His birth to the Virgin Mary from whom He derived His fully human nature, body, soul (or mind), and spirit. .........

The Church Catechism XV: The Incarnation Part One

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ… Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost….
We have examined the truth that Jesus Christ is the Word of God, the only Son of the Father, and, therefore, our Lord. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God.(St John 1:1-2) The eternal Son of God is pure Spirit, like His Father. (St John 4:24) Yet, as St John tells us, the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us. (St John 1:14) Thus God the Son is said to have become incarnate, which is to say, .............

The Church Catechism XIV: Jesus Christ our Lord

Though perhaps less frequently today than in years past, one often sees the words JESUS IS LORD on billboards, bumper stickers, tee-shirts, and lapel pins, and even on such mundane household items as coffee cups and refrigerator magnets. Of course, the words are perfectly true; though perhaps a full & proper understanding of what they mean is often lacking on the part of those who display them. 
The Hebrew word for Lord is Adonay. Because the name of God revealed to Moses on Mt Sinai (Exodus 3:13-14 6:2-9), YHWH (Jehovah/Yahweh), was deemed so holy that sinful men would not dare utter it for fear of profaning the sacred Name, the word Adonay or Lord was pronounced........

Church Catechism XIII: God the Son

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ, his only Son….
We have examined the Article in the Apostles’ Creed that speaks of God as Father. We now will examine the article affirming that Jesus Christ is God’s only Son. We noted than that as Creator, God is often referred to as Father. (See Malachi 2:10a; Acts 17:26-28)God created Adam from the dust of the earth in His own image; and so Adam and all who descend from him are referred to as the son of God as distinct from the rest of Creation. (See Genesis 1:26-27; St Luke 3:38) When the Lord chose Israel,....

Church Catechism XII: Jesus Christ

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in… Jesus Christ….
[Christ preaching] In talking about God as Father & Creator we distinguish Christianity from the various Eastern religions that identify God with the cosmos or some part of it. The Person of Jesus Christ distinguishes our religion from that of Jews (modern) and Muslims. It is significant that the second and longest section of both the Apostles’ and the Nicene Creeds is devoted to Jesus Christ. This is no surprise, because for the Christian, this is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.(St John 6:29).................

Church Catechism XI: The Creator

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in God the… maker of heaven and earth….
[God the Creator 2] We have examined the scriptural & creedal affirmation that God the Father is Almighty. Closely connected is the teaching that God is the Creator of heaven & earth. As the Prophet Jeremiah proclaimed: Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee. (Jeremiah 32:17) When we affirm that God is the Creator of heaven & earth we are saying that everything, ..............

Church Catchism X: God Almighy

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief.
Answer. I believe in God the… Almighty….
 Based upon the record of Holy Scripture, we know that God has revealed Himself to us to the extent that permits us to say that He possesses a number of attributes or qualities. God is a pure spiritual substance or essence (St John 4:24), existing in and of Himself through all eternity (Psalm 90:2). God is unchangeable or immutable (St James 1:17). God is invisible, yet He is everywhere present (omnipresent) (1 Timothy 1:17; 6:16; Jeremiah 23:3). God’s wisdom and knowledge are limitless ......

Church Catechism IX: God the Father

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. 
Answer. I believe in God the Father….
 There is some confusion, and indeed distortion, in terms of our understanding of God as Father. Over the centuries, there are those who have suggested that all that is really required of man is to affirm the first article of the Creed: “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.” After all, is not the Creator of all also the Father of all? Certainly the Scriptures do affirm that our Creator is our Father..........

The Church Catechism VIII: God

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. Answer. I believe in God….
The Anglo-Saxon/English word God derives from the proto-Germanic word gudan, which in turn derives from the Indo-European word goutom. It has been translated literally either as “one to whom sacrifice is made” or “one who is invoked.” When capitalized the modern English word God is defined in the dictionary as: “the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshipped as creator and ruler of the universe.” In the popular mind, the basic distinction is made between those who believe in God so defined and those who do not, who are now commonly called “atheists.”......

The Church Catechism VII: The Articles of Faith

Catechist. Rehearse the Articles of thy Belief. Answer. I believe….
Among the requirements placed upon those presented to the bishop for confirmation is the ability to recite the articles of the Christian Faith contained in the Apostles’ Creed. The Creed is a summation of our faith in the Holy Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Though the articles of belief contained in the Apostles’ Creed are supported by the writings of the New Testament, the formula itself is not of apostolic origin. However, the creed does rest ultimately on Christ’s Great Commission: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father,......

The Church Catechism VI: Obligation

Question. Dost thou not think that thou art bound to believe, and to do, as they have promised for thee?
Answer. Yes, verily; and by God's help so I will. And I heartily thank our heavenly Father, that he hath called me to this state of salvation, through Jesus Christ our Saviour. And I pray unto God to give me his grace, that I may continue in the same unto my life's end.
The question all we who have received the Sacrament of Holy Baptism,............

The Church Catechism V: Obedience

Q. What did your sponsors [at Baptism] then for you? A. They did promise and vow three things in my name… Thirdly, that I should keep God’s holy Will and Commandments, and walk in the same all the days of my life.
We have examined the first and second of the three vows or promises made on our behalf by our sponsors or godparents when we were baptized as infants or small children. This month we will examine the third promise. The second promise deals with faith or right belief. The third deals with obedience or right conduct in keeping with God’s will and commandments....

The Church Catechism IV: Belief

Q. What did your sponsors [at Baptism] then for you? A. They did promise and vow three things in my name… Secondly, that I should believe all the Articles of the Christian Faith…. 
Last time we examined the first of the three vows or promises made on our behalf by our sponsors of godparents when we were baptized as infants or small children. This month we will examine the second promise. 
The second promise relates to faith or right belief. Our faith is Christian.............

The Church Catechism Part III

Q. What did your sponsors [at Baptism] then for you? A. They did promise and vow three things in my name: First, that I should renounce the devil and all his works, the pomps and vanity of this wicked world, and all the sinful lusts of the flesh…. 
Those who are Baptized are regenerate or born-again as children of God. Infants are presented by their sponsors or godparents, who then undertake certain obligations associated with Baptism in the name of their godchild..............

The Church Catechism Part II

The Catechism of traditional churches rooted in the Church of England begins this way: Question. What is your Name? Answer. N. or N. N. Question. Who gave you this Name? Answer. My Godfathers and Godmothers in my Baptism; wherein I was made a member of Christ, the child of God, and an inheritor of the kingdom of heaven. The Catechism of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland begins differently. “Q. 1. What is the chief and highest end of man? A. Man's chief and highest end is to glorify God,................

The Church Catechism Part I

The term ‘catechism’ comes from the Greek word meaning ‘to instruct by word of mouth.’ In the early centuries of the church’s history, converts to Christ went through a lengthy period of instruction in the form of lectures in preparation for Baptism, usually on Easter Eve. This instructional regimen fell into disuse as infant Baptism and confirmation at a young age became the norm. But for centuries, church reformers sought to insure that God’s people were well grounded in the fundamentals of the faith as........