About Who We Are – Our Creed
“Rise and come forward.”
Jesus spoke these words to a man He had singled out in a synagogue almost 2,000 years ago. For us, these words also express the mission of our Anglican Catholic Faith. At Saint Michael, our passion is for people, all people. For many people, many of the life-changing treasures of the Church have remained “buried.” The Scriptures, the sacraments, the lives of the saints, the teachings of the church fathers, the richness of tradition, and the wisdom of the early Councils seem to have little relevance for their lives.
Our mission strives to unfold and explore these treasures in a way that is faithful, dynamic and understandable to ordinary people. By doing this, we hope to awaken their faith, and help them develop a more vital relationship with God.
We believe in God the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) and the orthodox Christian Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. Our Faith is rooted in the Bible, summarized in the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, taught by the Fathers and Doctors of the Undivided Church, defended and defined by the Seven Ecumenical Councils, and demonstrated in the lives of the Saints. We are Anglican Catholic.
To live our faith in God to its fullness, we need to be a part of an actual, flesh and blood community of Christians. In that community, where we come to know others and be known by others, we see ourselves as spiritual pilgrims seeking a truly religious family. We practice our Christian faith in the tradition of the Church of England. We are Anglicans. We are also Catholic because we believe the ancient and universal (or “catholic”) faith of the church–what was believed “everywhere, always and by all.”
We worship Almighty God using the time-honored traditional liturgy of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer. In addition to being a masterpiece of English prose, the Book of Common Prayer provides an ancient Catholic pattern for public and family worship, pastoral services, and regular reading of the Scriptures. We seek to develop Christ-centered lives through worship, the sacraments, prayer, Bible study, compassion and fellowship with other Christians.
We believe in the sanctity and dignity of all human life and in traditional Biblical standards of morality. We also believe in the family, in the God-given sacramental bond in marriage between one man and one woman.
We gratefully acknowledge Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and as the only sure hope of salvation and eternal life. For this reason, we desire to share the wonderful Good News of God’s love for us in Christ with our family, friends, neighbors, and acquaintances through prayer, outreach, friendship, and service. The Anglican Catholic Church is a place for faithful Anglicans to continue to believe and practice “the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 3, KJV).
Rector: Father Pothin Ngyele
Call 240-397-9782 | e-mail FatherPothin@stmichaelacc.org
Rector Emeritus: Father Arthur Woolley
Vestry: Brice Verdier | Lynne Brisbane | David Thrower
Treasurer: Lynne Brisbane
Organist: Roberta Windle
Children’s Sunday School: Deborah LaGarde
Webmaster: Kirk McKee
Facebook Page: Deborah LaGarde
About our History
St. Michael’s is a parish within the worldwide Anglican Catholic Church, which was set apart from the Church of England and the U.S. Episcopal Church in 1978 to continue the faith and worship of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church as it was once received in the days of their orthodoxy.
People are sometimes confused by the name “Anglican Catholic Church.” To understand this term, we must recite some history.
In 1977, an international congress of nearly 2,000 Anglican and Episcopalian bishops, clergy, and lay people met in St. Louis, Missouri, to begin the process of establishing an orthodox jurisdiction in which traditional Anglicanism would be maintained.
They unanimously adopted a document called “The Affirmation of St. Louis,” which provided a vision for the future continuation of orthodox Anglicanism in America. This document stated, “We affirm that the Church of our fathers, sustained by the most Holy Trinity, lives yet, and that we, being moved by the Holy Spirit to walk only in that way, are determined to continue in the Catholic Faith, Apostolic Order, Orthodox Worship, and Evangelical Witness of the traditional Anglican Church, doing all things necessary for the continuance of the same.”
The participants in the St. Louis Congress sought to maintain their classical Anglican and Episcopal heritage by returning to the fullness of the Faith of the undivided Catholic Church. Acting according to the principles determined by the Seven Ecumenical Councils of the ancient Church and adopting initially the name “Anglican Church in North America,” they placed themselves under the jurisdiction of the retired Episcopal bishop of Springfield, the Rt. Rev. Albert Chambers.
In January 1978 Bishop Chambers expanded this jurisdiction and guaranteed its continuance by consecrating four bishops for the newly formed Anglican Church in North America. In October 1978 the Church met in synod to adopt a formal constitution, which included the change of name to the “Anglican Catholic Church.”
Today the Anglican Catholic Church is a worldwide body with dioceses in the Americas, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Haiti, and India. St. Michael’s is a congregation in the Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic States under the jurisdiction of the Rt. Rev. Donald F. Lerow.
We thus trace our origins back through the Church of England through the ancient British (Celtic) Church to the times of St. Augustine — in his bringing the gospel to the English Isles. Thus, it is clear to see, we have a rich and ancient heritage. In essence, we are the same Church that has produced such well-known Christians as C.S. Lewis, Shakespeare, and St. Patrick, as well as the King James Bible and the majestic Book of Common Prayer.
The Anglican tradition came to America with the first English settlers, who landed at Cape Henry (now part of Virginia Beach) in 1607 along with their chaplain, the Rev. Robert Hunt.