St. Mary's Anglican Catholic Church

Diocese of the Midwest

In the sixteenth century, the doctrine of the Church of England was presented in the form of two books of homilies or sermons dealing with several topics, or certain high holy days. The first was issued in 1547 under King Edward VI; the second under Elizabeth I in 1563 and, in final form, in 1571. The following is the conclusion of Homily XIV of The Second Book of Homilies, “Of the Resurrection for Easter Day,” written by John Jewell, Bishop of Salisbury, author of the Apology of the Church of England. 


“Christ our Easter lamb is offered up for us, to slay the power of sin, to deliver us from the danger thereof, and to give us example to die to sin in our life. As the Jews did eat their Easter lamb and kept their feast in remembrance of their deliverance out of Egypt, even so let us keep our Easter feast in the thankful remembrance of Christ’s benefits, which he hath plentifully wrought for us by his resurrection and passing to his Father, whereby we be delivered from the captivity and thralldom of all our enemies.
Let us in like manner pass over the affections of our old conversation, that we may be delivered from the bondage thereof, and rise with Christ. The Jews kept their feast in abstaining [Exod. 12:[15–20].] from leavened bread by the space of seven days: let us Christian folk keep our holyday in spiritual manner, that is, in abstaining, not from material leavened bread, but from the old leaven of sin, the leaven of maliciousness and wickedness. Let us cast from us the leaven of corrupt doctrine, [Matt. 16:6, 12], that will infect our souls. Let us keep our feast the whole term of our life with eating the bread of pureness of godly life and truth of Christ’s doctrine. Thus shall we declare that Christ’s gifts and graces have their effect in us, and that we have the right belief and knowledge of his holy resurrection: where truly, if we apply our faith to the virtue thereof, and in our life conform us to the example and signification meant thereby, we shall be sure to rise hereafter to everlasting glory by the goodness and mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ. To whom with the Father and the Holy Ghost be all glory, thanksgiving, and praise in infinita seculorum secula. Amen.”