Statement of Faith

As a Church, we hold to the three primary creeds of the historic church, the Apostles Creed, Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.

Apostles Creed | Book of Common Prayer, 1662

I believe in God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth:

And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,[b] Born of the Virgin Mary,
Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
Was crucified, dead, and buried:
He descended into hell;
The third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
And sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Ghost;
The holy Catholic Church;
The Communion of Saints;
The Forgiveness of sins;
The Resurrection of the body,
And the Life everlasting.
Amen.

 

Nicene Creed | based on Book of Common Prayer, 1662

I believe in one God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth,
And of all things visible and invisible:
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God,
Begotten of his Father before all worlds,
God of God, Light of Light,
Very God of very God,
Begotten, not made,
Being of one substance with the Father,
By whom all things were made;
Who for us men, and for our salvation came down from heaven,
And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary,
And was made man,
And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate.
He suffered and was buried,
And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures,
And ascended into heaven,
And sitteth on the right hand of the Father.
And he shall come again with glory to judge both the quick and the dead:
Whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost,
The Lord and giver of life,
Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son,
Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified,
Who spake by the Prophets.
And I believe in one Catholick and Apostolick Church.
I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins.
And I look for the Resurrection of the dead,
And the life of the world to come.
Amen.

 

IDENTITY & ETHOS: EVANGELICAL ANGLICAN

  1. Church of The Apostles (Evangelical Anglican), 170 Fairview Avenue, Coventry, Rhode Island, is self-governing Christian Congregation rooted in the historic evangelical Anglican tradition. Her worship is derrived from the ancient Church as embodied in the historic Common Prayer Book tradition.  As a Congregation, we faithfully uphold the historic orthodox Christian faith, as revealed in the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, as confessed in the Apostles’, Nicene and Athanasian Creeds, and as articulated in the  Thirty-nine Articles of Religion of 1571.

Three marks whereby the Church Catholic is known

  1. Church of The Apostles is a visible manifestation of “the true Church [which] is a Universal [Catholic] body of God’s faithful, ‘built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the head cornerstone (Ephesians 2:20).’”[1] Church of The Apostles, holds that the historic Church  “has always three notes or marks whereby it is known.  Pure doctrine, the Sacraments ministered according to Christ’s holy institution, and the right use of Ecclesiastical Discipline.”[2]  We believe that these three marks of the Church Universal, “is agreeable both to the Scriptures of God, and also to the doctrine of the ancient fathers, so that none may justly find fault therewith”[3] (see also third paragraph p. 8, Preface, CPB).

Congregational Episcopacy

  1. Congregational Episcopacy: COTA is structured upon the pattern of the earliest church of the 1st and 2nd  centuries that may be described as a congregational or presbyterial episcopacy. The Office of the episcopacy [Bishop] is operates for the bene esse (“well being”) of both the Universal and local church; Within the universal priesthood of believers there operates for the benefit of the Church a threefold ministry of the episkopos (Superintendent or Bishop), presbuteros (Elder or Presbyter) and diakonos (Diaconal Minister or Deacon), who collectively serve (Romans 12:4) the church as the High priest, priests, and Levites served Israel.
[The founding (2006) document of Church of The Apostles, the “Declaration of Governmental Principles” (an attachment to the CONSTITUTION and BYLAWS; see CANON XVI), lays out the historical precedent upon which this congregation is established. Church of The Apostles is, therefore, organized as a congregational episcopacy (Acts 6:1-6; Declaration of Governmental Principles VII.2, 4, VIII.2, X).  (see CANON I; CANON XVI & THE HISTORIC RESOLUTIONS; Declaration of Governmental Principles VII, X).]

 

  1. The Elders (presbuteroi) of Church of The Apostles are set apart to function (Romans 12:4; Declaration of Governmental Principles V.5) and are normally ordained within the Congregation (see specifically Additional Note rubric, p. 376, CPB, Ordering of an Elder) through the laying on of hands and prayer by the Superintendent [Bishop] and the other incumbent Elders to a specific Apostolic Order called the presbyterate (1 Peter 5:1; Titus 1:5; see CANON II.7, CANON III.1; Declaration of Governmental Principles V.1-5; Ordinal, CPB, p. 377).

 

  1. Congregational Overseer (Bishop): After being duly elected by the Church Council and ratified by the members of Church of The Apostles, a member of the presbyterate is set apart, consecrated and then installed through the laying on of hands and prayer by his fellow Elders to the Office of the episcopacy (1 Timothy 4:14; Declaration of Governmental Principles IV.2, 4); and, thus, to the work and ministry of a Bishop within the Congregation (1 Timothy 3:1; Acts 20:28; see CANON II.1-3; Declaration of Governmental Principles II.4, IV, V; Ordinal, CPB, p. 362).

 

  1. Diaconal Ministers are servants of the Gospel who are consecrated and commissioned through the laying on of hands and prayer by the Superintendent to the ministry of general oversight of the temporal good works of Church of The Apostles (Acts 6:1-6; see
    CANON IV.1, 2; Declaration of Governmental Principles VI; Ordinal, CPB, p. 391).

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[1]  Quoted from Sermon No. 16 (“Of the gifts of the Holy Ghost”) of The Second Book of Homilies of 1562.  Article XXXV of the Thirty-nine Articles of Religion of 1571 gives confessional authority to the Homilies:  “The second Book of Homilies, the several titles whereof we have joined under this Article, doth contain a godly copand wholesome Doctrine, and necessary for these times…; therefore we judge them to be read in Churches by the Ministers” (Article XXXV).

[2]  Sermon No. 16 (“Of the gifts of the Holy Ghost”) of The Second Book of Homilies.

[3]  Ibid.