no prescription cyproheptadine in washington dc helpful online pharmacy acheter cialis france ketoconazole shampoo for itchy dog nexium mups tabletas structure activity relationship of griseofulvin atarax med tramadol cid adalat part 1 side effects to ciprofloxacin hcl what dosage of metronidazole 500mg for dogs tooth ache achat viagra promo cialis preise fallen para qe sirve la ciprou lasix horse racing wiki quanto costa moduretic levitra de 5 is metoprolol succinate and metoprolol tartrate same generique viagra 100mg forgot to take zoloft this morning kamagra 100 mg upotreba premarin boxed warning seroquel natural alternatives atenolol insulin resistance metoprolol hc 25 clomid success rates with other vitamins medroxyprogesterone 10mg during pregnancy precio del orlistat generico zyban and tylenol 3 accidental ingestion wellbutrin ketoconazole shampoo best compny prednisone guinea pigs can i take avodart with cialis prostate cancer and metformin torsemide 50 mg does 25 mg of zoloft work augmentin for sti cardizem 30 mg throwing up with cipro femara after miscarriage zoloft electric shock sensations evening primrose and clomid contraindications of metformin and lisinopril diane 35 glucophage success cause remeron australia naproxen 375 mg wikipedia side effects does desogen make you lose weight metformin and oestrogen viagra list in india get viagra in malaysia valacyclovir 1gm neurontin 600 mg ?§entikli film tablet amoxicillin with food or without food is the female viagra the same as the male viagra on sertraline 4 weeks tinidazole resistance buy clomipramine australia aldactone and high potassium levels levofloxacin iv infusion rate levitra 40 mg bayer celexa faa medical buy celexa online clomid and tbg cheap azithromycin which day should i take clomid 100 ml topamax side effects rxlist why does topamax cause weight loss acyclovir generic price philippines 10 mg propranolol for anxiety can neurontin used for cramps s.s.n. famvir does amlodipine cause psychosis gia thuoc metformin terbinafine tablets thailand kamagra effervescent uk albuterol pregnancy category c acyclovir ointment for herpes zoster clomid venta libre doxycycline and c difficile when is plavix become generic celebrex celecoxib 100mg frecuencia ventolin ni?os dog prednisone side effects breathing at night metoprolol and magnesium citrate interactions buy ciprofloxacin 500 mg online lipitor copay card mail order can amoxicillin cause shaking on a 2 year old kamagra jelly brisbane how long does 20mg cialis take to take effect taking 20 mg lexapro is metronidazole pills 500 mg safe in pregnancy what is kamagra gel why was it named lasix flagyl metronidazole discharge change color hydrochlorothiazide and joint pain ofloxacin baownbeuv australia citalopram ve yan etkileri amitriptyline price india sani abacha viagra sildenafil citrate tablets vegah extra 120 how many gabapentin 100 mg capsule to get high take two amoxicillin 500 mg toothache viagra when you come is it over alergi antibiotic preco de zovirax flagyl 2g stat blu gabapentina 300 mg flagyl lexapro interaction baclofen pump 3t mri amitriptyline diabetic neuropathy dose can you use amoxicillin for herpes preco do misoprostol 2 cialis pills one day allegra d prices walgreens strattera mvp clomid ovulation date doctors opinions on finasteride adalat full episode 131 lexapro and headache piroxicam of contradication ciprofloxacina solubilitate cialis saveti tabmontelukast indications flomax cr o.4 viagra price has dropped zestril price in pakistan voltaren 12.5 mg suppositories what is wellbutrin sa accutane worked in 2 weeks paroxetine verschillende merken very high dose gabapentin ergotrate despues del cytotec sildenafil in sri lanka alternative generic cialis india no prescription wellbutrin treatment for headaches can takong 5 flagyl once cause abortion atarax10 mg alternate kamagra pills reviews amoxil drops 3 day course cost zyvox injection alcohol and ciprofloxacin hcl erythromycin ec tab 250mg augmentin u kota harga obat nizoral ketoconazole cream generic lisinopril pill identification does allopurinol help during a gout attack metronidazole robaz antibacterial gel baclofen false positive drug tests ketoconazole thrush treatment over the counter drugs to counteract viagra citalopram hydrobromide 508 nexium unfruchtbarkeit levofloxacin hemihydrate manufacturers in india azithromycin sode effects length zoloft 15 mg side effects generic of synthroid 0.05 mg diflucan without a yeast infection ciprofloxacin 500 mg pill identification generic brand of naprosyn can prednisone affect your sense of taste montelukast orion tbl prednisone wear off time cymbalta itchy scalp non prescription viagra women diflucan oral thrush dosage adalat xl amoxicillin rash 1.25 vs 2.5 albuterol sulfate what does tender nipples mean after taking clomid buy viagra pills online flagyl 500 mg price philippines side effects increasing celexa dose of prednisone for lupus flare chinese viagra redbox voltaren cream price in philippines viagra to buy paroxetine consumer information prednisone taper 6 day 60mg to 10mg thuoc metformin hydrochloride 850 mg can you take synthroid and ambien together buspirone 3a4 does gas x interact with metformin amoxilin bp 500 for urine infection will 200mg viagra per dy be dangerous dexamethasone 1 mg tablet prix de levitra 20 mg lisinopril 20 mg watson viagra blue 800mg zoloft adhd side effects 2 bactrim ds bid diflucan per candida glabrata misoprostol experience is bactrim stronger than clindamycin is wellbutrin prescribed for anxiety can ciprofloxacin clean your system lipitor dry side effects of too much phenergan metformin once daily dosing amlodipine 5 mg tablet price lamisil not working ringworm premarin bioidentical hormone levofloxacin dose chest infection cijena lamisil kreme cheap lamisil no prescription maximum ventolin puffs how much does cialis cost in the u.s ano de cria??o do viagra propecia 8 weeks blum minipress p generic orlistat forum allegra trio victoria camomilla ecoumadin buy cialis online canada paypal use of erythromycin eye ointment allegra brockton ma buy mifepristone and misoprostol pills gabapentin dosage for seizures can you take percocet with cymbalta what is 25 mcg clonidine with valsartan augmentin plus 1000 what does cialis cost per pill serum clomid clomid and first cycle buspirone postpartum amlodipine interaction with cardamom propranolol weight training can you take a 10mg paxil with a hydrocodone low testosterone from propecia viagra pill splitter cytotec ventas en medellin lamisil at cream tinea versicolor sleepy after taking cialis half life of prednisone 10 mg lexapro withdrawal after 6 months septra side effects anxiety zoloft side effects marriage ciprofloxacin teva 250 mg o que lipitor nyquil and coumadin can they be mixed nitroglycerin sublingual philippine taking metronidazole and fluconazole lisinopril donating blood duloxetine co to jest cost of one 8mg odt zofran donde consigo priligy mexico can u take hydroxyzine and lexapro together a1c levels and metformin dose disulfiram bertibarots reviews viagra for runners nexium 40 faydalari finasteride dosage for women metronidazole dna efectossecundariosde ciprofloxacin come off citalopram and raspberry avodart and cialis herbal viagra duro phenergan for anxiety counteracting antidepressant side effects what neurotransmitters do wellbutrin affect metronidazole and alcohol how long after fluconazole mercury drug store doxycycline monohydrate 100 mg alcohol treatment of lyme disease doxycycline mono 3 days of clomid ciprofloxacin cost ventolin liek bula do medicamento atenolol 50mg not washing face accutane drug study of metronidazole 500 mg iv levaquin dosing h pylori generic viagra for sale australia fluconazole opinia can doxycycline treat leptospirosis discount on singulair prescriptionbuying singulair negazole metronidazole 500mg erythromycin side effects uk valsartan hct sandoz 160mg seroquel augment ssri coumadin clinic soap note 100mg clomid a day for testosterone xn--b1afpdqbb8d.xn--p1ai faslodex vs arimidex zithromax vs. amoxicillin azithromycin dose one shot para que es el amoxil 250 wellbutrin xl and hives diflucan three days thyroxine and nsaids jaw pain and prednisone bactrim sulfa drug allergy prednisone side effects sense smell atorvastatin precio topamax teen prader willi what is treatment for bleeding from plavix quanto custa famciclovir efeitos colaterais nexium nexium side effects long term use and ed lowest price on levitra augmentin and ampliclox minipress 2.5 tablets generic brand for provera dosage for amoxicillin 400 mg puedo comprar cytotec en walgreens can i take amoxicillin with doxycycline diflucan bez recepta cena cialis order proair hfa albuterol sulfate inhalation tetracycline injection form uterine pain clomid paxil lawyers for adhd zach lund propecia ovulation calculator with clomid using anejaculation due to tamsulosin allegra printing beatty street zoloft lower libido fluoxetine hcl 20 mg can it be snorted or shot can diflucan make you horny costo de glucophage en mexico lioresal 25 mg venezuela how long does it take to get zoloft out your system piroxicam adalah plavix 75mg price spain seroquel 25 mg street price flu like symptoms when can you overdose on zoloft can zofran kill a fetus cabergoline rijvaardigheid watermelon rind as viagra para que es la crema zovirax gabapentin and flexeril high piroxicam powder price how quickly does cipro hc otic zoloft rapid cycling herb works as well as viagra estradiol 2mg dosage can you take celexa and buspar together cant cum on levitra how many paxil 12.5 to overdose amoxicillin dosage for strep throat what does antibiotics 500mg do to you what is metronidazole pills for better to take cymbalta in the morning or at night albuterol for 7 month old safe keflex j2 amoxicillin for dogs overdose citalopram y escitalopram son lo mismo masturbate while taking metronidazole gel drug interactions with ondansetron lasix induced bullous pemphigoid aciclovir lipsore cream conjugated estrogens buy online russell brand finasteride estradiol levels 2 follicles bactrim at walmart augmentin for std can you take metronidazole with imodium kamagra gel vol 1 cyproheptadine liver prohibe viagra bactrim alternatives for acne posso tomar clomid por conta cramping on clomid day 20 role of spironolactone and hirsutism anchen wellbutrin xl reviews when can i ask for clomid sildenafil citrate tablets 100mg uk does gaviscon effect nexium galderma erythromycin who has the best generic viagra perbandingan viagra vs cialis vs levitra reviews how long is it ok to use bactrim del sol nose solution cialis and tylenol webmd sildenafil pediatric maximum daily dose kegunaan cytotec misoprostol cheap levitra prescription

Affirming All Things: A Conversion Story

When Dwight Longenecker applies the motto, "A man is often right in what he affirms and wrong in what he denies," to faith questions, his query takes him on a life-changing journey.
by Dwight Longenecker | Source:
American Gothic

Taking dramatic steps of faith runs in the family. In the eighteenth century my ancestors left Switzerland for the new colony of Pennsylvania to find religious freedom. The two Longenecker brothers were Mennonites - members of an Anabaptist sect so strict that they were persecuted by Calvin.

Seven generations later my part of the family had left the Mennonites, and I was brought up in a Bible Christian church. The independent Bible church was a strongly evangelical and conservative group of Christians who were disenchanted with the liberal drift of the main Protestant denominations in the USA in the post-war period and set off to do their own thing.

That independent movement included the foundation of a fundamentalist college in the deep South by the Methodist evangelist Bob Jones. So after the war my parents and aunts and uncles went to study there and it was natural for my parents to send me and my brothers and sisters there in the 1970s.

In the heart of the so-called Bible belt, Bob Jones University is the bastion of hollerin hell-fire fundamentalism. They are the folks who gave Ian Paisley his honorary doctorate and who brand even Billy Graham as a liberal.

The religion in our own home was simple, Bible-based and balanced. Like our Mennonite forebears there was a quiet simplicity and tolerance at the heart of our faith. We believed Catholics were in error, but we didnt nurture hatred towards them. At Bob Jones the tone was different. There the Catholic church was clearly the whore of Babylon and the Pope was the Anti-Christ.

Anglican Orthodoxy

Ironically it was at Bob Jones that I discovered the Anglican Church. We were allowed to go to a little Episcopalian schism church named Holy Trinity Anglican Orthodox Church. The church was founded by a bishop whose orders -- an Anglican bishop later told me -- were valid, but irregular. He had been ordained by a renegade Old Catholic as well as a breakaway Orthodox bishop.

So along with some other disenchanted Baptists I went to the little stone church and discovered the glories of the Book of Common Prayer, lighting candles and kneeling to pray. I was taken with the experience and after searching for Gods calling in my life decided to be an Anglican priest.

I had studied English literature and visited England a few times and thought it would be perfect to minister in a pretty English village in a medieval church. So when the opportunity to study at Oxford came my way I jumped at the chance and came to England for good. After theological studies the door opened for me to be ordained and a life of ministry in the Anglican church opened up. Along the way I shed the This England view of English life and sought a real ministry within Christs church.

The Affirmative Way

This whole period was a time of great growth and learning. Often it is the little bit of wisdom which makes the most impression, and I will never forget a little quotation from the great Anglican socialist F.D.Maurice while I was studying theology. He wrote, "A man is most often right in what he affirms and wrong in what he denies." After the negative attitude of American fundamentalism and the cynical religious doubt which prevailed at Oxford, Maurices statement was like a breath of fresh air.

It was sometimes tempting to feel guilty about leaving the religion of my family and upbringing, but with Maurices viewpoint I increasingly felt the Anglican riches I was discovering were not so much a denial of my family faith, but an addition to it. So I took Maurices dictum as my motto, and whenever I came across something new, asked if I was denying or affirming. If I wasnt able to affirm the new doctrine or religious practice I wouldnt deny it -- I would simply let it be.

So when a Catholic friend in the USA suggested I visit a Benedictine Abbey I took her idea and made arrangements to go to the closest one to Oxford -- Douai Abbey. There I found a world as alien to evangelical Anglicanism as Oxford was to Bob Jones University. The monks impressed me with their sense of solemn self-mockery, and there was a sense of touching a Christianity far greater and wider than I had yet experienced.

St.Benedict the Balanced

My link with the Benedictines continued after I was ordained and went to serve as an Anglican curate. I made my annual retreat at Quarr Abbey on the Isle of Wight, read about the history of monasticism and felt drawn to the Benedictine Way.

There seemed to be a balance, a simplicity and a profound spirituality which echoed back to the simple sincerity of my Mennonite ancestors.

Just as I was about to visit Quarr Abbey for my annual retreat a friend brought me a rosary from Walsingham. I had never touched such a Catholic artifact, but F.D. Maurices wisdom touched me and I thought, "If so many Christians pray this way, who am I to deny it?" So I bought a book about the rosary and learned how to pray the rosary.

Any ideas of accepting the Marian dogmas were out of the question. I substituted different glorious mysteries which were more Christ-centred. So my five Biblical glorious mysteries were: Transfiguration, Resurrection, Ascension, Pentecost and Second Coming. Despite my individualism another window was opened and something new affirmed for I found the rosary grew in importance and I started to receive great graces through the prayers of Our Lady.

When my curacy was finished I had three months free and decided to hitch-hike to Jerusalem. So with backpack and a pair of sturdy shoes I headed across France and Italy staying in various religious houses along the route. I found my journey went best when I fit in with the monastic routine. So I would begin a days journey with Mass and morning offices in one monastery, say my Anglican office whilst traveling, then arrive at the next monastery in time for Vespers, the evening meal and Compline.

The pilgrimage to the Holy Lands also took me further into Christian history. Part of the appeal of being ordained into the Church of England was to leave the modern subjective church of Protestant USA and find deeper routes in the history and faith of Europe. Suddenly travelling through France, Italy and Greece to Israel I was immersed in a religion obviously older and deeper still than Anglicanism.

The Benedictine houses put me in touch with roots of faith which were deeper and more concrete than I imagined could exist. Although I realised my views were becoming more Catholic I didnt fight it. I wanted to be right in what I affirmed."

The Apostolic Ministry

I had been ordained for about six years when my dream came true and I went to be vicar of two beautiful old churches on the Isle of Wight. By this time I was not an Anglo-Catholic, but I did regard my ministry in a very Catholic way. I knew we were separated from Rome, but I considered my ministry to be part of the whole Catholic church.

Despite the formal separation I thought of Anglicanism as a branch of the Catholic church, and prayed for the time of our eventual re-union.

My pilgrimage to the Catholic church had --for the most part -- been intuitive. I simply adopted the Catholic practices that seemed suitable, and when it came time to question certain doctrines I looked at them and made every effort to affirm and not deny. This mindset brought me almost unconsciously to the very doorstep of the Catholic church. What I said to some friends who were considering conversion was true of me as well -- I was more Catholic than I myself realised.

It was the Church of Englands decision to ordain women as presbyters that helped clear my vision. Suddenly things became crystal clear. Women priests were not the problem. Instead it was what the General Synods decision-making process revealed about the true nature of the Church of England.

The key question was--"Is the Anglican Church a Catholic church or a Protestant church?" If she wishes to be considered Catholic then she does not have the authority to ordain women as priests. But if Protestant--like all Protestant groups-- she may indeed take the decision to ordain women ministers.

So when the General Synod took the decision I was in a quandary. Everything within me said a Catholic church could not make such a decision on her own. Yet I hated taking a negative position about anything. According to my motto I was denying women priests and I was wrong to do so.

Then Fr. Leo Avery, the late Abbot of Quarr, gently pointed out that greater affirmations often include smaller denials. In other words you cant have everything. Choices need to be made. Denying women priests was merely the negative side of affirming something greater--the apostolic ministry; and affirming Catholicism had to include the denial of those things contrary to Catholicism.

Affirming All Things

The next few years were a terrible time of indecision. By now I was married and we had two young children. I hadnt trained for any other career and if we left the Anglican church there seemed nothing but an uncertain future. Then one Sunday evening I went to Quarr Abbey for Vespers and Benediction. As the monks chanted I agonized over the decision to leave the Church of England.

"But I only wanted to serve you in the ancient church in England!" I cried out to the Lord.

As the incense wafted heavenward and the monstrance was lifted, the still small voice replied, "But THIS is the ancient church in England." Then the struggles ended. My mind was made up, and in the Autumn of 1994 my wife and I began our course of instruction with Fr. Joe McNerny at Quarr.

There was grief at losing our home and church, but at the same time we received a tremendous welcome from our new Catholic friends. It was during this time that Keith Jarrett--the secretary of the St.Barnabas Society--offered friendship, help and encouragement as he has done for so many who have taken the same step.

Once we were received, the St.Barnabas Society continued to be there with practical advice and financial assistance.

As we went through our instruction I not only read the documents of Vatican II, but did further reading in the apostolic fathers. Day by day I discovered that all the things I had come to affirm intuitively were part of the great unity of the Catholic faith.

When I became an Anglican I felt my Bible Christian background was being completed, and as we prepared to be received into the Catholic church I realised that I could still affirm everything my non-Catholic friends and family affirmed, I simply could no longer deny what they denied. F.D. Maurices little snippet of wisdom had brought me across the Tiber, and in becoming a Catholic I was affirming all things and denying nothing that was true.

Our reception took place in a quiet service one February evening in the crpyt of Quarr Abbey church. That night all was harvest. There as the monks sang and we were finally received into full communion, the simple faith of my Mennonite forebears, the Bible Christians love of the Scriptures and the ancient beauties of Anglicanism were all gathered together and fulfilled in a new and dynamic way.

Reprinted with permission of Dwight Longenecker. All rights reserved. Dwight Longenecker works as Southwest District Organiser for the St. Barnabas Society. He is also active as a Catholic writer and broadcaster. He and Alison have four children--Benedict, Madeleine, Theodore and Elias. This article has appeared in the Catholic Gazette.

Click Here to Donate Now!

Join the new media evangelization. Your tax-deductible gift allows to build a culture of life in our nation and throughout the world. Please help us promote the Church's new evangelization by donating to right now. God bless you for your generosity.




Post a Comment
Write a comment on this article

Email required (will not be published)
required Country

Most Popular