Episcopal Church Religious Orders

We had a guest Priest at our Church yesterday -an Episcopal Church Franciscan-he was wearing a nice cross with a Crucifix-several members of the ECW (Episcopal Church Women) could not help themselves by asking why the Crucifix ? - My answer was why not-I left the poor Friar to them-

Have any other non Roman Catholic or Orthodox churches have religious orders? -have you ever actually seen a member in the flesh ? I believe there were 2 Nuns at the Wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge-this is a first for me

for those interested:
there are a number of Orders in the Episcopal church
of Women
Community of the Holy Spirit
Community of Saint Francis
Community of Saint John Baptist
Community of Saint Mary -
Southern Province
Community of Saint Mary -
Western Province
Community of the Sisters of the Church
Community of the Transfiguration
Order of Saint Anne - Bethany Convent
Order of Saint Anne - Chicago
Order of Saint Helena
Sisterhood of the Holy Nativity
Sisters of St. John the Divine
Society of Saint Margaret
Teachers of the Children of God
of Men
Order of the Holy Cross
Saint Gregory’s Abbey - OSB
Society of Saint Francis
Society of Saint John the Evangelist
Society of Saint Paul
of Men and Women
Order of Julian of Norwich

In my city there was for many years an Episcopal convent, the building is now converted to a Bed and Breakfast, I never knew what much about them.
My understanding is that there are Lutheran and Anglican Franciscans. Are there any other religious orders, or traditions, that had roots or origins in Catholicism? (I see an OSB in your listing).
I would be curious how Episcopal religious communities relate to the larger church. For instance, is there something comparable to the Department at the Vatican but only for Anglicans or TEC? Is there TEC Canon Law about this matter? What kinds of ministries do they engage in?

Do religious orders encompass the whole Anglican communion, or are they specific to a particular country?

Are there any religious orders in ACNA or the Continuum?

We have a pair of priests who are in the Society of Saint Paul as part of our church’s extended staff. They’re considered Canons residentiary.

I went to an Anglican boarding school here in Australia.

We had two teachers who were “religious Brothers”. They wore brown cossacks with red braided rope belts.

They smoked pipes and were hilarious. They could be very serious when the occasion called for it and caned the troublemaker boys but they also had a great sense of humor which is required when one is sent to the outback bush of Australia.

I never thought it was true that English people used the term “jolly old chap” until I heard Brother Robin use it. :smiley:

I know many Anglican monastics, here in the US, in Canada and in the UK. Orders sometimes go back to the Benedictines or Franciscans, following their ancient rule, and sometimes they are founded by a more contemporary leader, such as Fr Huntington, who founded the Order of the Holy Cross.

I am not sure what you mean by asking how they relate to the larger Church. They are a part of the Church, but because the numbers of orders are small, they don’t exactly warrant a whole department in the structure of the national Church. In TEC, however, there is a section within the Constitution and Canons (Canon 14) called ‘Of Religious Orders and Other Christian Communities.’ It mostly defines what an Order is, how it needs to have a Bishop Visitor, and how vows and dispensations are handled, etc.

Ministries are mostly prayer - the Divine Office is said in all the Orders I know - and for some, teaching is still important, as is guest ministry. Many monks and nuns will do retreats or conferences in parishes or dioceses.

Some orders are international - with houses in the UK and the US, Canada, some in Africa.

Do you know about the Archbishop of Canterbury’s new venture called the Community of St Anselm? He has invited young people, ages 20-35 to live and pray together as community in Lambeth Palace (his London home). The project just began this past autumn, I believe, and it is gaining much enthusiasm. Here is a link if you’d like to follow up on it.


By the way, most Anglican monks and nuns are still in habit.

Do they all take vows of Poverty, Celibacy, Obedience? I refer specifically to what Catholics call “the religious”. I assume they have other kinds of confraternities or third orders for laity, where those persons might not take vows.

Yes, they all take vows (my fingers slipped and hit the ‘b’. Ha! The ones I know take bows too) of poverty, chastity, and obedience. The Benedictines also add Stability. And yes, third orders and associates are a large part of their communities.

You know that to the great dismay of so many of us, Henry VIII dismantled the monastic houses in Britain. Modern day monastics in England have existed only since the Oxford Movement. I often wonder what would have happened if there had been an uninterrupted line.

And on a side track, do you know of Taize and Grandchimp communties in France and Switzerland? Probably two of the most well known non-Catholic monastic communities.

There seem to be a general sentiment that Protestants shouldn’t be involved in any type of organized celibacy. (General, not universal, as your list demonstrates.)

These are Anglican orders. Most Anglicans would not define themselves as Protestant.

Indeed. I don’t really consider myself Protestant. I’ve always liked the term “Via Media” or “Middle Way” which the Anglican churches often use to describe themselves as I feel it’s apt, and it’s one of the things that’s always appealed to me about Anglicanism.

Indeed the retention of religious orders is part of that.

Yes, Padres, I am right there with you on all counts. I think it is sometimes difficult for Roman Catholics to get beyond the ‘Catholic vs Protestant’ labels. (Putting Eastern Orthodox aside for the moment). I am very happy to be in the Via Media.

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