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Author Topic: Experiences with the Independent Sacramental Movement  (Read 3190 times)

EclecticWheel

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Experiences with the Independent Sacramental Movement
« on: April 05, 2020, 07:42:42 pm »
I think I've seen a couple forum members who have experiences with the Independent Sacramental Movement, so I was just curious if any would like to share their thoughts and experiences regarding the movement.

I've had an interest in it since my teenage years, and I am now 32 years of age.  Given its decentralized nature and diversity, it actually reminds me of the neo-pagan movement in some ways.

I do not have direct access to the movement, but I have been in contact with independent Anglican, Liberal Catholic, and Old Catholic clergy and the archbishop of the Open Episcopal Church over the years.  Some of us are exchanging new and experimental liturgies and para-liturgies, and I'm still waiting to find out what will result, if anything.  At the very least it has benefited me with friendships and spiritual conversation.

The jurisdictions I have an interest in in particular are the Liberal Catholic Church and her offshoots, and neo-gnostic jurisdictions in general, especially those with a pre-Vatican II "feel" to their prayers and liturgies.  I'm also fascinated by lectionaries, especially alternative, non-mainstream ones.

I have never settled on what I would do with an ordained ministry, but if I ever did figure it out, I'd seek ordination in this movement.  However, I am mostly solitary.  Then again, there are some solitary independent clergy as well in this movement, since even masses said while physically alone are considered to be a benefit to the world and a ministry in itself.
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Re: Experiences with the Independent Sacramental Movement
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2020, 10:04:05 pm »
I think I've seen a couple forum members who have experiences with the Independent Sacramental Movement, so I was just curious if any would like to share their thoughts and experiences regarding the movement.

I've had an interest in it since my teenage years, and I am now 32 years of age.  Given its decentralized nature and diversity, it actually reminds me of the neo-pagan movement in some ways.

I do not have direct access to the movement, but I have been in contact with independent Anglican, Liberal Catholic, and Old Catholic clergy and the archbishop of the Open Episcopal Church over the years.  Some of us are exchanging new and experimental liturgies and para-liturgies, and I'm still waiting to find out what will result, if anything.  At the very least it has benefited me with friendships and spiritual conversation.

The jurisdictions I have an interest in in particular are the Liberal Catholic Church and her offshoots, and neo-gnostic jurisdictions in general, especially those with a pre-Vatican II "feel" to their prayers and liturgies.  I'm also fascinated by lectionaries, especially alternative, non-mainstream ones.

I have never settled on what I would do with an ordained ministry, but if I ever did figure it out, I'd seek ordination in this movement.  However, I am mostly solitary.  Then again, there are some solitary independent clergy as well in this movement, since even masses said while physically alone are considered to be a benefit to the world and a ministry in itself.

I’ve been involved in the ISM since shortly after I graduated high-school in 2015. That was around the time I really made a formal break with Roman Catholicism, which I had reoriented to in my junior and senior years with an eye toward the seminary. On the Feast of the Martyrdom of the Holy Templars in 2017 I was confirmed in the Apostolic Johannite Church (the standard-bearer of Gnostic Christianity in the ISM; good people if the Gnostic Revival is your bag) and was canonically received into the Holy Celtic Church on the Feast of St Finnian of Clonard that same year.

Fast forward a couple years to now and my experience has deepened — I graduated from the HCC’s seminary not a month ago and happily await monastic profession and priestly ordination. I can honestly say I’ve dealt with quite a few indy jurisdictions and you’d be an excellent addition to the vast majority of them.

The Holy Celtic Church International provides for a wide variety of sacramental Christian spiritualities and charisms (and one or two non-Christian ones) but we are at heart a Liberal Catholic tradition: the Liberal Catholic rite is our normative liturgy and we draw greatly from their theology and doctrines as well. A substantial portion of my seminary education was oriented around LC liturgics, and while Wedgwood and co. would probably be very upset to hear their work has a Tridentine ‘feel’ I agree it’s vastly incongruous with other English-language liturgies post-VII.

You seem to have plenty of experience with the ISM yourself, but I strongly encourage you to discern more deeply the prospect of more involvement in the Movement. You and I have disagreed more over the years than we’ve agreed, but I know you’d be quite a catch for whatever jurisdiction.

Also I’d say that probably the majority of indyCath clergy are solitary to a greater or lesser extent; pastoral/congregational ministry is comparatively rare within the movement and I don’t think your solitary focus would be an impediment to a clerical vocation even slightly. St Peter Damian’s Dominus Vobiscum definitively covers the nature and efficacy of private celebration, and I recommend it to you if you’re interested in reading up on private/contemplative priesthood in particular.

Finally I would add, keep a careful eye when examining different jurisdictions. I think most groups are fairly obvious and consistent with their doctrines or churchmanship (Spirit of VII liberal, doctrinaire Old Catholic, etc) but there are innumerable ISM churches which are 100% liberal except for X, or 100% conservative except for Y; and the exceptions can come as a surprise.

For example the Holy Celtic Church is strongly in favour of including gay Christians (something which I suspect is influenced by our gay founder/Presiding Bishop) and prioritises freedom of conscience on issues like abortion, contraception, etc. *However* I know His Grace has had to turn away quite a few people interested in joining us because they stopped there, at the liberal stuff, before noticing our adamant policies against ordaining women (or transsexuals, I’m pretty sure, although AFAIK it’s never been addressed officially) or those who support the practice. One of our bishops was even summarily defrocked last year after ordaining a woman; and this all I tell you so that you’ll read the fine print!
« Last Edit: April 06, 2020, 10:06:26 pm by Castus »
“Castus, meanwhile, goes straight for the bad theology like one of those creepy fish that swims up streams of pee.” — Darkhawk

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