Sunday, December 21, 2008

Answering God's call: Bishop Urban

Here's a splinter group I've never heard of, although I have met Ruth at some point. I guess they won't be a part of the "new province" where women bishops are forbidden.

Urban will be consecrated as a bishop at Holy Apostles Anglican Church (which meets inside Northeast Christian Church) in Madison today at 1:30 p.m. The event, which is open to the public, marks the first time a woman has been ordained as a bishop in the conservative breakaway churches of the Anglican religion.

Urban, along with her husband, John, are now priests at Holy Apostles, a congregation they established in 2004 that is now under the umbrella of All Nation's Anglican Church in Amarillo, Texas. The couple plans to move to Texas next year so that Urban may fulfill her duties as bishop. The Rev. Larry L. Bain, a priest who currently serves with the Urbans, will lead Holy Apostles, and others may be appointed to join him.

When Ruth Urban assumes her new position, she will have a nongeographic missionary diocese and responsibilities that include creating new churches and ministering across multiracial and multiethnic lines. She will also mentor clergy and continue a healing ministry.

Ruth Urban explained that the Anglican Communion International has 38 provinces that are under the See (seat of authority) of Canterbury. The Episcopal Church is one, and there are breakaway churches that are not under the see, like the Urbans' Holy Apostles church that is affiliated with the Texas-based All Nation's Anglican Church.

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