This past Thursday the fruits of the trilateral full communion agreement between Episcopalians, Moravians and Lutherans were on display at the annual service of the Renewal of Ordination Vows and blessing of the Chrism held at Nativity Cathedral in Bethlehem.
"Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem Bishop Paul Marshall invited the Rev. Samuel R. Zeiser, bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod, and the Rev. David E. Bennett, president of the Eastern District of the Moravian Church in North America, to join him in celebrating the Mass at the Cathedral Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
"This is history being made," Marshall wrote in his invitation to diocesan members to participate in the gathering.
According to Marshall and others, this was the first time that Episcopal, Lutheran and Moravian clergy concelebrated a Eucharist since the Episcopal Church and the Moravian Church in North America inaugurated their full-communion agreement on Feb. 10. The Episcopal Church and the ELCA are celebrating 10 years of full communion this year. Moravians and Lutherans marked a similar anniversary in 2010.
Marshall presided at the service and Bennett and Zeiser assisted in distributing the bread and wine."
We'd be remiss if we didn't note that The Rev. Canon Andrew Gerns (our Friday Lead editor) was the preacher. Well done Canon!