ANNUAL CHAPTER – MINUTES

THE CONGREGATION OF THE COMPANIONS OF THE HOLY SAVIOUR

ANNUAL CHAPTER – MINUTES

11 APRIL 2017

The Annual Chapter meeting of the Congregation of the Companions of the Holy Saviour was held on 11 April 2017 at 6:00 pm in the Rectory of Saint Alban Church, Mount Wolf, Pennsylvania. The Chapter was convened by The Rt. Rev’d Barry E. Yingling, CSSS, and conducted over two sessions, one with the following present, and a follow-up telephone meeting between Bishop Yingling and the only other Companion, Father Justin Falciani. Present on 11 April were, in addition to Bishop Yingling, The Rev’d Deacon Brian Johnson, A.CSSS and Robert and Nan Gould, A.CSSS.

As noted in the announcement calling the Chapter, an annual meeting has not been held for over a decade, the Father Master, The Rev’d Robert Hufford has been unavailable for more than that period, and another of the Companions, Father Richard Winn, died this year. That meant that Bishop Yingling and Father Falciani were the only two remaining Companions.

During the first portion of the Chapter, Bishop Yingling requested input from the three Associates present. During the discussion it was recommended that:

  1. The Congregation of the Companions of the Holy Saviour should be reorganized under the jurisdiction of the United Anglican Church.
  2. Father Hufford should be officially removed from his position as Father Master and as an annually vowed Companion, specifically for having abandoned the Order.
  3. We should pursue re-incorporation of the Order in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, unless it is determined that it is already incorporated there. We should also attempt to recover any assets of the Order from any sources. (N.B. Since there exists a Federal identification number, previous incorporation is assumed.)
  4. Bishop Keith Ackerman should remain as the Episcopal Visitor of the Order.
  5. The definition of “Companion” should be revised to allow married, chaste men to take vows to be such. Throughout the Constitution and Rules, revisions are to be made allowing for “celibate/chaste” Companions.
  6. Companions and Associates should be permitted from Anglican jurisdictions both in communion with the See of Canterbury or not. (N.B. the Archbishops of Canterbury and York both recently decided that the ordination of those in the Anglican Church in North America are valid.)

During the subsequent telephone meeting between Bishop Yingling and Father Falciani, these items and the following were approved:

  1. The Official Breviary of the Order is The Anglican Breviary, allowing for the use of The Book of Common Prayer, The Monastic Diurnal, or any other enhanced Prayer Book Office.
  2. Bishop Yingling becomes the Father Master of the Order, while Father Falciani becomes the Vice Master and Warden of the Philadelphia Conference.
  3. The use of the community scapular by Companions is optional.
  4. The Memorial Booklet will be revised to reflect changes from this Chapter, as well as the removal of Father Hufford and the presumed deaths of Father Winn and Father Leonard Sorvillo, an Associate.

The official address of the Order is:
The Congregation of the Companions of the Holy Saviour
41 South Main Street
PO Box 796
Mount Wolf, Pennsylvania 17347

Respectfully submitted,

The Rt. Rev’d Barry Eugene Yingling, CSSS
Father Master

CSSS News

On 11 April 2017, the Order was reconstituted within the United Anglican Church. Changes were made to the definition of “celibate” to permit “celibate/chaste” Companions, thus allowing for  the admission of married Companions. The other clarification made was to define Anglican as anyone in communion with the See of Canterbury, or who identify themselves as Anglican. No other changes were made to the Constitution. Father Falciani will be the contact with the Episcopal Church for purposes of continuing to be considered members of “Other Christian Communities.

Why America Needs A Monarchy

We threw the baby out with the bathwater when we kicked the monarchy out of America, and we ought to bring it back. To be clear, I do not mean the sort of hereditary tyrants who rule North Korea, Saudi Arabia, or the New York Yankees. Rather, I’d like for us to get one of those cute, ornamental throne warmers the Europeans trot around to cut ribbons at events.

In America we’ve combined power and reverence in the office of the presidency, but legal authority and veneration compliment each other about as well as Scotch and back pain medication. It’s safer to ingest them separately.

Consider Britain: their head of state is a 90-year-old woman who wears flower pots on her head and appears to be married to a vampire. Their head of government is an entirely different woman named Theresa May. Britons hold Queen Elizabeth in high esteem, while simultaneously despising or barely tolerating their prime minister. Englishmen never really like their leaders, even when they voted for them; conservatives make fun of May and David Cameron, just as liberals kicked around Gordon Brown and Tony Blair. CONTINUE READING

St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop

Cyril

Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop, (C. 315-386) is best known for remaining steadfast in the faith in the face of the Arian heresy of his time, which denied the divinity of Christ.

He was often persecuted and even banished (three times!) from his Jerusalem see for his beliefs; however, nothing dissuaded him from preaching Christ fully divine and fully man.

We thank God for members of Christ’s body who have boldly stood up for the Faith, no matter the cost to them personally, so that the Church of future generations would know the only true God, and Jesus Christ.

Catholic Samurai’s beatification in Japan

A Japanese Catholic Samurai who died in the 17th century in exile, will be declared Blessed during a Mass in ‎Osaka on Tuesday. Pope Francis has sent Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Vatican’s ‎Congregation for the Causes of Saints, to preside over the Beatification Mass of  Justo Takayama Ukon.

Born into a family of landowners in 1552, Ukon converted to Christianity at the age of 12 after ‎coming ‎into contact with Jesuit missionaries.‎  When Shogun Toyotomi Hideyoshi took power and prohibited ‎the practice of Christianity, Ukon ‎refused to follow the great feudal lords and abandon his faith.  He ‎lost his properties, position, ‎social status, honor and respectability and was eventually forced into ‎exile. With 300 other Japanese ‎Christians he fled to Manila where, just 40 days after his arrival, he fell ‎ill and died on Feb. 4, 1615.‎  Pope Francis signed a decree on 21 January 2016 clearing Ukon’s way for Beatification as a martyr. CONTINUE READING

St. Romuald, Ab

SAINT ROMUALD
Founder and Abbot
(906-1027)

In the tenth century Sergius, a nobleman of Ravenna, quarreled with a relative over an estate and, in a duel to which his son Romuald was witness, slew him. The young man of twenty years was horrified at his father’s crime, and entered a Benedictine monastery at Classe to do a forty days’ penance for him. This penance led to his entry into religion as a Benedictine monk.

After seven years at Classe, Romuald went to live as a hermit near Venice, under the guidance of a holy man who had him recite the Psalter from memory every day. When he stumbled, the hermit struck his left ear with a rod. Romuald suffered with patience, but one day, noting that he was losing his hearing in that ear, asked the old man to strike him on his right ear. This episode supposes great progress in virtue. The two religious were joined by Peter Urseolus, Duke of Venice, who desired to do penance also, and together they led a most austere life in the midst of assaults from the evil spirits.

Saint Romuald, whose aim was to restore the primitive rule to the Order of Saint Benedict, succeeded in founding some hundred monasteries in both Italy and France, and he filled the solitudes with hermitages. The principal monastery was that at Camaldoli, a wild, deserted region, where he built a church, surrounded by a number of separate cells for the solitaries who lived under his rule; his disciples were thus called Camaldolese. For five years the fervent founder was tormented by furious attacks by the demon. He repulsed him, saying, “O enemy! Driven out of heaven, you come to the desert? Depart, ugly serpent, already you have what is due you.” And the shamed adversary would leave him. Saint Romuald’s father, Sergius, was moved by the examples of his son, and entered religion near Ravenna; there he, too, was attacked by hell and thought of abandoning his design. Romuald went to visit him; he showed him the error of the devil’s ruses, and his father died in the monastery, in the odor of sanctity.

Among his first disciples were Saints Adalbert and Boniface, apostles of Russia, and Saints John and Benedict of Poland, martyrs for the faith. He was an intimate friend of the Emperor Saint Henry, and was reverenced and consulted by many great men of his time. He once passed seven years in solitude and total silence. He died, as he had foretold twenty years in advance, alone in his monastery of Val Castro, on the 19th of June, 1027, in an advanced and abundantly fruitful old age.

By the life of Saint Romuald, we see how God brings good out of evil. In his youth Saint Romuald was much troubled by temptations of the flesh; to escape them he had recourse to hunting, and it was in the woods that he first conceived his love for solitude. His father’s sin prompted him to undertake a forty days’ penance in the monastery, which he then made his permanent home. Some bad examples of his fellow-monks induced him to leave them and adopt the solitary mode of life; the repentance of a Venetian Duke brought him his first disciple. The temptations of the devil compelled him to lead his severe life of expiation; and finally, the persecutions of others were the occasion of his settlement at Camaldoli, mother house of his Order.

Reflection. If we follow the impulses of the Holy Spirit, like Saint Romuald we shall bring Him into situations which seem without hope. Our own sins, the sins of others, their ill will against us, our own mistakes and misfortunes, if we react with the help of God, are capable of bringing our own souls and others to the throne of God’s mercy and love.

St. Titus, BC

Titus and Paul

Titus was a disciple of the apostle Paul while they journeyed together in Crete. He was made bishop by Paul to that island, according to Eusebius, (Bishop of Caesarea and author of “Ecclesiastical History”), attended the Apostles’ Council at Jerusalem (Gal. 2.1), and was also sent to organize the Church in Corinth.

Saint Paul loved Titus because of his steadfastness and loyalty to the Faith. He lived to be in his 90’s and died in 107.

As “the harvest is great, and the labourers are few,” pray that God raises up men like Titus to do the work of the apostolic ministry. (The day’s Gospel, page E 31, The People’s Anglican Missal)

Titus is the patron saint of the United States Army Chaplain Corps.

The accompanying icon is an image of Saint Paul and Titus holding a model of the island of Crete.

Congress proposes Johnson Amendment overhaul

by Tom Strode

WASHINGTON (BP) — Members of Congress have introduced legislation to enable churches and other non-profit organizations to endorse candidates or otherwise participate in political campaigns without fear of penalties from the Internal Revenue Service.

The Free Speech Fairness Act — introduced Feb. 1, the day before President Trump reiterated his intent to eliminate the so-called Johnson Amendment — would free pastors, churches and other tax-exempt entities to intervene on behalf of or against candidates in an election campaign. The measure would still prohibit financial donations from such organizations to candidates or campaigns, a bill sponsor said.

The Johnson Amendment, named after then-Senator and future President Lyndon Johnson of Texas, altered the federal tax code in 1954 to bar 501(c)(3) organizations “from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office.”

In a speech at the National Prayer Breakfast Thursday (Feb. 2), Trump pledged to “get rid of, and totally destroy, the Johnson Amendment and allow our representatives of faith to speak freely and without fear of retribution.” He made a similar promise during the election campaign, including in his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention in July.

The amendment, and the way it has been wielded by liberal organizations especially, has caused confusion for many churches and pastors regarding what freedoms they have to address elections or even issues and the public policies affecting them. CONTINUE READING

St. Andrew Corsini, EC

Bishop of Fiesole
(1302-1373)

Saint Andrew was born in Florence in 1301 of the illustrious Corsini family. A short time before the birth of Saint Andrew, his mother experienced a strange dream, in which she had given birth to a wolf which became a lamb upon entering a Carmelite church. After a dissolute youthful life Andrew repented, when one day in 1318 his desolate mother told him of her dream. He rose and went to the altar in the church where his parents had offered to God the child they hoped to obtain from His mercy; there he prayed to the Blessed Virgin with tears, then went to beg his admission to the Carmelite Order.

He began a life of great mortification. Ordained a priest in 1328, he studied in Paris and Avignon, and on his return became the Apostle of Florence, and Prior of his convent there. In 1360 he was consecrated Bishop of Fiesole, near Florence, and gained a great reputation as a peacemaker between rival political factions and for his love of the poor. He was also named papal nuncio to Bologna, where he pacified dissenting factions and won the hearts of the nobility with whom he was associating. He wrought many miracles of healing and conversion during his lifetime.

At the age of 71, while he was celebrating the midnight Mass of Christmas, the Blessed Virgin appeared to him and told him he would leave this world on the feast of the Epiphany, to meet the beloved Master he had served so faithfully. In effect, he died on that day in 1373, in the thirteenth year of his episcopacy. Miracles were so multiplied thereafter that Pope Eugenius IV permitted a public cult immediately. The city of Florence has always invoked him with confidence and happy results. He was canonized in 1629.

He is often represented holding his crosier, with a wolf and a lamb at his feet, or hovering over a battlefield on a cloud or a white steed – this in memory of his miraculous intervention in a battle the Florentine people won by his assistance.

Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The PRESENTATION of JESUS in the TEMPLE
the PURIFICATION, or CANDLEMAS

The law of God, given by Moses to the Jews, ordained that after childbirth a woman should continue for a certain time in a state which that law calls unclean, during which time she was not to appear in public. This term was of forty days following the birth of a son, and double that time for a daughter. When the term expired, the mother was to bring to the Temple a lamb and a young pigeon or turtle-dove, as an offering to God. These being sacrificed to Almighty God by the priest, she was cleansed of the legal impurity and reinstated in her former privileges. A dove was required of all as a sin-offering, whether rich or poor; but as the expense of a lamb might be too great for the poor, these were allowed to substitute for it a second dove. Such was the case, Scripture tells us, for the Holy Family. (Luke 2:24)

Our Saviour having been conceived by the Holy Ghost, and His Blessed Mother remaining always a spotless virgin, it is evident that She was not subject to the law of purification, but devotion and zeal to honor God by every observance prescribed by His law, prompted Mary to perform this act of religion.

Besides the law which obliged the mother to purify herself, there was another which required that the first-born son be offered to God, and that after his presentation the child be ransomed with a certain sum of money, and specific sacrifices offered on the occasion. Mary complied exactly with all these ordinances. She obeyed not only in the essential points of the law, but had strict regard to all the circumstances. On the day of Her purification She walked several miles to Jerusalem, with the world’s Redeemer in Her arms. She waited for the priest at the gate of the Temple, made Her offerings of thanksgiving and expiation, and with the most profound humility, adoration and thanksgiving, presented Her divine Son, by the hands of the priest, to His Eternal Father. She then redeemed Him with five shekels, as the law appoints, and received Him back again as a sacred charge committed to Her special care, until the Father would again demand Him for the full accomplishment of man’s redemption.

The ceremony of this day closed in a third mystery – the meeting in the Temple of the holy prophets Simeon and Anne with the Divine Infant and His parents. Saint Simeon, on that occasion, received into his arms the object of all his desires and sighs, and praised God for the happiness of beholding the much-longed-for Messiah. He foretold to Mary Her martyrdom of sorrow, and that Jesus would bring redemption to those who would accept it on the terms it was offered, but a heavy judgment on all who would obstinately reject it. Mary, hearing this terrible prediction, courageously and sweetly committed all to God’s holy Will. Simeon, having beheld Our Saviour, exclaimed: “Now Thou canst dismiss Thy servant, O Lord, in peace, according to Thy word, because mine eyes have seen Thy salvation.” The aged prophetess Anne, who had served God with great fervor during her long widowhood, also had the happiness of recognizing and adoring the Redeemer of the world. This feast is called Candlemas, because the Church blesses the candles to be borne in the procession of the day.

Reflection. Let us strive to imitate the humility of the ever-blessed Mother of God, remembering that humility is the path which leads to lasting peace and brings us closer to God, who gives His grace to the humble.