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Encyclopedia > Episcopal

The word episcopal is derived from the Greek επίσκοπος, transliterated epískopos, which literally means "overseer"; the word, however, is used in religious contexts to refer to a bishop. A bishop is an ordained member of the Christian clergy who, in certain Christian churches, holds a position of authority. ...


Episcopal churches

Episcopal churches are churches that use an episcopalian church governance, i.e. that use bishops generally regarded as being in Apostolic succession. More specifically, the term "episcopal" is applied to those churches historically based within Anglicanism including those still in communion with the Church of England. It is also commonly used to distinguish between the various organizational structures of Protestant churches; for instance the word "presbyterian" (from the Greek πρεσβύτης) is used to describe churches governed by elected elders, while "episcopal" is used to describe churches governed by bishops (Greek επίσκοπος). Self-governed Protestant churches, governed neither by elders nor bishops, are usually referred to as "congregational". Episcopalian government in the church is rule by a hierarchy of bishops (Greek: episcopoi). ... A bishop is an ordained member of the Christian clergy who, in certain Christian churches, holds a position of authority. ... In Christianity, the doctrine of Apostolic Succession (or the belief that the Church is apostolic) maintains that the Christian Church today is the spiritual successor of the Church of the Apostles. ... The term Anglican (from Anglia, the Latin name for England) describes the people and churches that follow the religious traditions developed by the established Church of England. ... The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England, and acts as the mother and senior branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, as well as a founding member of the Porvoo Communion. ... Protestantism is a general grouping of denominations within Christianity. ... Presbyterianism is a form of Protestant Christianity, in the reformed branch of Christendom, as well as a particular form of church government. ... A religious elder (in Greek, πρεσβυτερος [presbyteros]) is valued for his or her wisdom, in part for their age, on the grounds that the older one is then the more one is likely to know. ... Congregational churches are Protestant Christian churches practicing congregationalist church governance, in which each congregation indepedently and autonomously runs its own affairs. ...


Examples of specific episcopal churches include:

There are, however, other churches overseen by bishops and with a connection to the Church of England which are not members of the Anglican Communion. The United Methodist Church is one example. All Methodist churches have their roots in Anglicanism because their founder, John Wesley, was an Anglican priest in England in the 1700s. Methodists, however, do not look to the Archbishop of Canterbury for leadership as Anglicans do, nor to the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church (ECUSA) in America. Further, it is not imperative for Methodist bishops to be seen as being in Apostolic Succession, though it is generally accepted that they are, through the Anglican ordination of John Wesley and then Wesley's ordination of the first Methodist superintendents, who later took the title of "Bishop" in the USA. Wesley held that bishops are merely presbyters (elders) who have been chosen for a supervisory position by the Church, and that there is, therefore, no necessity of them receiving a laying on of hands of prior bishops whose "orders" are allegedly traceable in unbroken succession to the Apostles. The Cathedral Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in Washington DC is the National Cathedral of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America. ... The neutrality of this article is disputed. ... Episcopal churches are churches in full communion with the Church of England. ... The International Communion of the Charismatic Episcopal Church (also known as the ICCEC) founded in 1992 is an international Christian communion established as an autonomous patriarchate in 1992 with over 1000 churches worldwide. ... The United Methodist Church is the largest Methodist, the largest mainline, and, after the Southern Baptist Convention, the second-largest Protestant denomination in the United States. ... The Methodist movement is a group of historically related denominations of Protestant Christianity. ... John Wesley (June 17, 1703–March 2, 1791) was an 18th-century Anglican clergyman and Christian theologian who was an early leader in the Methodist movement. ... A religious elder (in Greek, πρεσβυτερος [presbyteros]) is valued for his or her wisdom, in part for their age, on the grounds that the older one is then the more one is likely to know. ... The Twelve Apostles (in Koine Greek απόστολος apostolos [1], someone sent forth/sent out, an emissary) were probably Galilean Jewish men (10 names are Aramaic, 4 names are Greek) chosen from among the disciples, who were sent forth by Jesus of Nazareth to preach the Gospel to both Jews and Gentiles...


Churches that are members of the Anglican Communion are episcopal churches in polity, and some are named "Episcopal." However, some Anglican churches do not belong to the Anglican Communion, and not all episcopally-governed churches are Anglican. The Roman Catholic Church, the Old Catholic Churches (in full communion with, but not members of, the Anglican Communion), and the Eastern Orthodox churches are recognized, and also their bishops, by Anglicans. The Anglican Communion uses the compass rose as its symbol, signifying its worldwide reach and decentralized nature. ... Catholic Church redirects here. ... The Old Catholic Church is a community of Christian churches. ... ... The term Anglican (from Anglia, the Latin name for England) describes the people and churches that follow the religious traditions developed by the established Church of England. ...


See also

A see (from the Latin word sedem, meaning seat) is the throne (cathedra) of a bishop. ... Used more often as the abbreviation EYC than spelled out, this is a traditional name given to youth groups in Episcopal churches. ... The term Anglican (from Anglia, the Latin name for England) describes the people and churches that follow the religious traditions developed by the established Church of England. ... The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England, and acts as the mother and senior branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, as well as a founding member of the Porvoo Communion. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Worldwide Marriage Encounter, Episcopal Expression (340 words)
An Episcopal Marriage Encounter Weekend begins on Friday at 8 PM and ends about 4:30 PM on Sunday.
The purpose of the Weekend is for a husband and wife to develop a better knowledge, understanding and acceptance of each other through the use of a communication technique which is taught on the Weekend.
The Weekend is presented from an Episcopal perspective, but the opportunities of the Weekend go far beyond the boundaries of any one faith expression.
Anglican News - Institute on Religion and Democracy (672 words)
The Windsor Report had asked the Episcopal Church to "explain, from within the sources of authority that we as Anglicans have received in scripture, the apostolic tradition and reasoned reflection, how a person living in a same gender union may be considered eligible to lead the flock of Christ" (para.
The Episcopal Church document does not offer a positive, coherent sexual ethic.  Instead it is focused on a negative task:  deflecting the biblical prohibitions of homosexuality, so as to open theological space for possible moral approval of the practice.  First, it argues that Scripture has often been misunderstood or wrong when it comes to ethics:
Note what this Episcopal Church document is demanding of Scripture.  This document is arguing that because Paul and other biblical writers had no experience of homosexuality "directly akin" to our experience today, therefore their proscriptions against homosexuality do not apply to us.
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