Monday, September 7, 2009

Answer Man: Got nuns? Anglicans can say yes

Q and A from Southern Illinois-

Q. Could you please tell me if there are any Anglican nuns in our area? Perhaps there would be convents in some of our larger neighboring cities. I remember many years ago seeing a picture of Queen Elizabeth's mother-in-law in the habit of an Anglican nun, walking with her son, Prince Philip. I'm certain there are sisters in England belonging to these Church of England religious orders.
-- R.C., of Trenton

A. Guess I had never really thought about it before, but it may surprise some to learn that the Roman Catholic Church doesn't have a lock on convents and monasteries. Monasticism always has been a fixture of the Eastern Orthodox and Buddhism. The Lutherans have a monastery and retreat house in Oxford, Mich.

And, almost since the time that the Episcopal Church planted its Anglican roots in the United States, the church's monastic communities started springing up around the country.
"(The practice) was strongly restored in the 19th century, both in the Church of England and in the Episcopal Church," said the Rev. Dale Coleman Jr., priest-in-charge at St. George's Episcopal Church in Belleville.

Some live in convents; some live in an area and come to the mother church periodically, he said. Some wear a traditional habit. All devote themselves to a life of prayer, service and community outreach as they help the poor and hungry.

More here-

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