Mark D. Roberts

Over the past few years, I have at times weighed in on the question of why orthodox, Bible-believing Christians should stay in denominations that flirt with heresy or abandon biblical authority. In particular, I have spoken of my own involvement in  the Presbyterian Church (USA), and why I remain in this denomination in spite of numerous frustrations and grave concerns about it.
The Episcopal Church often seems to be plagued with even greater problems than the PC(USA). Many Episcopalian churches and even some dioceses have left their denomination and affiliated with other Anglican dioceses in other parts of the world. Moreoever, there is a move afoot to form a new Anglican denomination in North America. I have many friends who are a part of this movement. I also have many friends who remain loyal to the Episcopal Church, quite a few of whom are solidly evangelical in their theology.
Christianity Today’s website has just published a fascinating interview with a leading Episcopalian who is remaining in his denomination even though, as a solidly orthodox, Bible-believing Christian, he has many concerns about the direction of the Episcopal Church. The Rev. Dr. Russell Levenson is the Rector (Senior Pastor) of St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas. With over 8,000 members, St. Martin’s is the largest parish in the denomination. I highly recommend that you read Rev. Levenson’s interview. It is full of wisdom and deserves a careful reading by all who are part of a church, especially by those of us who are members of denominations in crisis.
(I happen to know quite a few members of St. Martin’s because they come to Laity Lodge. They’re fine folk: faithful, committed, worshipful. In fact, I’ll be teaching a group from St. Martin’s in a couple of weeks when they join us for their annual Laity Lodge retreat.)
Oh, by the way, “sick” as in “Why stay in a sick church?” is Rev. Levenson’s word. I would feel hesitant to use this of another church or denomination, though I find it an apt description of my own denomination. We who are sick need healing. We need the Healer.

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