The Emmanuel Communion
Deacon Tom Theobald to be ordained to the Holy Priesthood in April
Deacon Tom Theobald is a resident at Solaris Nursing Home in Stuart, Florida where he ministers to the residents in that facility as well as in the assisted living facility next door. He makes daily rounds through the facility greeting people, listening to their problems and praying with them as appropriate. Staff members also seek out the Deacon for a listening ear and a shoulder to lean on. He has been known to be called to sit with a resident in their final hours on this earth and quietly pray for them as they slip out of this life.
The Deacon has had a lifelong desire for the ordained ministry but had been turned down by religious authorities because of some perceived limitations that he deals with. Deacon Tom has had Spina Bifida since birth and is confined to a motorized wheelchair all day. He has limited use of only his left hand to operate his chair. Born on October 5, 1962, Deacon Tom was raised at home by his parents Albert and Marie Theobald. His dad passed away in August of 1995 and Tom's mother continued caring for him until her passing in 2013, at which time he moved to the nursing home.
Archbishop Ed Skiba met Deacon Tom at the then Parkway Nursing and Rehab and a friendship grew. We talked of Tom's frustrations at wanting to pursue ordained ministry, as he had been raised Roman Catholic, but was considered limited in his abilities to serve. Tom continued his lay ministry to the residents around him and in August of 2015 he was received into the Order of Saint Benedict (Anglican) as a Brother. Brother Tom redoubled his ministerial efforts and became well known around the facility.
Having observed Deacon Tom's extraordinary efforts and seeing the productive ministry he had built, the House of Bishops of the Emmanuel Communion voted unanimously to ordain Brother Tom into the Holy Order of Deacons, which took place at his facility on October 29, 2016. Bishop Barry Becchio, Diocesan for the Dioceses of Florida, officiated at the ordination in the presence of many friends and family members.
April 18th, 2020 Deacon Tom will be ordained into the Holy Order of Priests in God's one, holy, catholic and Apostolic Church, The Emmanuel Communion. The service will take place at 2PM at the Solaris Nursing facility in Stuart, Florida, where Deacon Tom resides. This event will be the culmination of Deacon Tom's lifelong dream.
Attention! : Our complete Canons of the Emmanuel Communion are now available on the "About Us" page of this website. Please visit when you can. Be blessed.
Emmanuel Communion Orphanage in Equatorial Uganda
In 2003, a Ugandan priest, Jason Musoke, arrived in the small parish of St. Philip’s, Nabusanke Equatorial, with his wife, Faith, to take up the post of rector. As he began the usual round of pastoral visitations, introducing
himself to the members of the community he would serve, he was shocked and saddened by the large number of children in the community who had been orphaned and left in dire poverty by the HIV/AIDS crisis.
Most of these children were living with distant relatives; very few had the means to attend school, or even meet their own daily needs. “Prayerfully, we decided to pick out some and started meeting their essential requirements, like education, medication, feeding and general upkeep,” Rev’d Jason, now a Canon in the Emmanuel Anglican Communion, Province of Africa, recalled.
In the first year, the Musokes invited five orphans to live with them. But as time passed, the number grew steadily, and they now have 66 children in their care. Though they have been able to find alternative lodging for some of the children, they are still responsible for providing their food and school fees.
“We could not accommodate them all in our house, but asked friends around us to accommodate some of them,” said Rev’d Jason. “Some take two or three or four, [but] they only offer accommodation, and we take care of the rest of their requirements (food, clothing, school fees and supplies.)”
The Musokes’ generosity comes with a heavy financial toll, and it is often a struggle to provide even the basics. “General upkeep is becoming hectic to us, because as the children continue growing up and the more they advance into high educational levels, the more expensive they become,” said Rev’d Jason.
In addition to his duties as a priest, Rev’d Jason also tends a plot of land, and if conditions are good, it provides them with enough food. When the harvest is meager, however, they must stretch their money to purchase food. “During good seasons, we have two meals a day and in bad seasons, we have only one meal, and at times we go without any meal and depend only on porridge,” he explained.
A Canadian Anglican Parish had been supporting the orphans quarterly through a channel established via the diocesan companionship, until Canon Jason elected to leave the Church of Uganda and join with the Emmanuel Anglican Communion. The Canon’s move was the result of prayer and seeking the Lord’s guidance concerning Rev’d Jason and his with, Faith, having theological differences with the teachings of his parent communion. It was a painful decision, but one they felt deeply was led by the Holy Spirit.
Situations sometimes arise in which funds need to be sent immediately. This was the case recently when Rev’d Jason’s car was written off – and when he needed to purchase new bed frames and mattresses after an infestation of bedbugs forced him to burn the 15 triple-decker bunk beds the children sleep in. Recently three of the orphan girls were coming home from school on the back of a motorcycle taxi (called a “bora-bora”) when the driver was hit by a truck in a roundabout and was killed. The three girls were hospitalized and survived by God’s grace. We were able to assist with their medical bills and prevented the orphanage from losing their property in order to pay for the children’s treatment.
Every issue that we here in the states would consider minor inconveniences can be monumental in the village environment in which the Musokes live. The tightness of the Musokes’ finances makes every problem potentially devastating.
The children now face a new school semester and are in need or supplies that were previously provided by the Diocese. The funds that the Canadian Church provided came through the Diocesan office. That has now stopped. We have an immediate need for $1324 for this semester or the children will be expelled!
Our objective in the Emmanuel Communion is to develop an ongoing source of support for this Orphan Ministry in the amount of $500 per month. This essential and meaningful cause is a singular opportunity for us to make a lasting mark on the lives of a large number of children in dire circumstances. With God’s help and the Holy Spirit’s inspiration this blessing will be realized.
We welcome support from all who wish to be a part of this blessing. If God moves you to participate, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 772-341-9026.
Archbishop Edward, OSB
October 30, 2018
Formation College is one of the educational resources of the Emmanuel Communion. The College is the result of many years of study and sacrifice by our Bishop (Dr) Augustine, the Diocesan for the Diocese of South East Asia and Australia and Bishop Abbot for the order of St. Benedict in South East Asia and Africa. He is headquartered in Kuala Lampur where he tutors students of diverse backgrounds and ethnic cultures as a means of supporting himself and his lovely wife Deborah, a native of Sri Lanka. Bishop Augustine is an American who has sacrificed much to live in the Malaysian culture and offer his teaching expertise as a work of ministry.
Bishop Augustine has established Formation College as a training ground for out Emmanuel Communion aspirants and postulants to the deaconate and priesthood and as a continuing education resource for our established clergy who may desire additional training beyond the Bachelors and Masters level. The College is primarily an online resource and is reasonably priced as many of our students are in positions of limited income. At present the Bishop has 24 students in West Africa, an aspirant in Haiti as well as several students there in Malaysia. in most cases, tuition is nominal and based on progress made by the students. The more attentive to their studies they are, the less they are required to pay. This of course puts the Bishop in a place of very limited support and income for the tremendous amount of work he expends.
Pray for Bishop Augustine and Deborah, that by God's Grace they are sustained in a reasonable fashion and that all of their physical needs are met. As they are both experiencing medical issues, treatment on the local economy has put a drain on their limited funds.
September 16, 2018
Once again we are behind in our updates. Since our last post, we have had growth in our African family. Bishop Ibiso Igani has been recruiting priests and deacons at a steady pace and we have several churches in Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Liberia, DR Congo, with inquiries from Uganda and Malawi and our precious brother in Ethiopia. Bishop Igani has just made an Episcopal visit to the Western side of Nigeria to receive clergy and instruct them on our traditions and Canons.
We have not heard from our partners in India but would ask for prayer as the Christian persecution there is becoming more intense.
On a brighter note Deacon Looi Joon Hui in Malaysia has taken a bride, Kah Yee. Father Bernard Lim performed the nuptial rite . We pray God's greatest blessings on this union and we will be posting photos on this site in the future.
Bishop Augustine of the Formation College is actively engaged in teaching theology to our new African clergy and can hardly keep up with the new members.
Father Julius Gospel Inalegwu is heading back from Nigeria to Houston, Texas where he hopes to plant a church work and possibly attend a course in Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE.) Father Julius has recently married and hopes to have his wife Mary join him in the near future.
Bishop David Francoeur and Cynthia are visiting their daughter in England so we pray for a safe journey and return. David is the Vicar General for the Emmanuel Communion and Provincial Bishop for the Eastern US.
Bishop Abbot Barry Becchio, our Abbot General for the Order of St. Benedict and our EC. treasurer is working hard as a chaplain for a group of nursing homes. His role as Abbot General is expanding as all of our African clergy have requested to be received into the order and some of their wives as well. Bishop Augustine is the Abbot for South East Asia, Australia and Africa.
Bishop James Hunt from the Diocese of the Holy Spirit is in the process of setting up an email server for the denomination which will give us our own communication system and storage resource for our documentation.
Our upcoming House of Bishops meeting , November 9th, will be a good opportunity for us to "catch up" on other pertinent issues and information and to increase our sense of family and fellowship.
Be blessed and well as we work together to make know..."Emmanuel...God With Us!"
July 8, 2018
Diocese of the Holy Spirit
First of all, Happy belated 4th of July! The United States has thrived and now prospers for 242 years. We as believers want to attribute it all to God's grace, and it is the catalyst that holds us together. in the formation of this great country people from all traditions, Christians, Jews, agnostics and atheists have contributed to our development. People do not have to express a particular belief in divine intervention for God to work through them. We are all His creation and He is omnipotent so He uses us as He pleases without violating our free will.
Let's pray together for a revival in the land as we continue to be "One nation...Under God."
At the end of June our very dear friend, Archbishop (Dr) James Hunt decided to step down as the Primus of The Province of the Holy Spirit, Anglican Rite and to become a part of the Emmanuel Communion. +James has many reasons for this move and may be contacted directly with any questions. As he has transitioned to us we have formed the Diocese of the Holy Spirit, EC of which he is the Bishop Ordinary. The Rev. Canon Dr. Richard Griffin of Wilton, New Hampshire, a seasoned minister and counselor, is the Canon Missioner for the Northeast US and +Jim's Canon to the Ordinary. They bring with them the Trinity Graduate School and Seminary, an online institution that offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses in ministry related fields. Bishop Dr. Jim and Bishop Dr. Augustine of our Formation College will be working closely together in developing formation curriculum for our Emmanuel Communion clergy.
Our clergy numbers continue to increase in West Africa under the loving guidance of Bishop Ibiso Igani, OSB. He has instituted Canon Missioners in Ghana, Liberia, Cameroon and Gabon as we anticipate the development of new parishes in those countries. We have a Commissioned Minister in Ethiopia who we hope to be bringing into Holy Orders in the near future and have inquiries from other Eastern African nations that are wishing to join the Emmanuel Communion. A Province of East Africa is being anticipated.
As God expands our borders as in the prayer of Jabez, 1 Chronicles 4:10, we covet your prayers. We are reminded daily that "God doesn't always call the equipped, but He always equips the called." Some of us in the Emmanuel Communion can very much relate to that. If you feel you are being called, but you really don't feel worthy or capable, pray for understanding , we would be pleased to talk with you at: email@example.com . For more information please scroll down to our Invitation post dated August 23, 2017.
May 23, 2018
Emmanuel Communion's 2nd Anniversary!
May 23, 2018
My dear friends in Christ,
Greetings in the most precious name of Jesus. It is difficult to express my feelings on this, our second anniversary of the Emmanuel Communion. The blessings that we have received leave me with a sense of awe and overwhelming inadequacy. The scope of ministry that God is building is beyond our feeble human abilities.
When our House of Bishops met to decide on our name, the ease with which we came to a consensus, in retrospect, was an indication of the validity of God’s purpose. He has given us a mandate to declare to the world that He is truly with His children and wants to fellowship with them; “Emmanuel…God With Us!” This purpose is evidenced by our worldwide influence.
Our newly formed Diocese of West Africa, and the continuing inquires we receive from various nations in that area; attest to God’s desire to bring scripturally sound teaching and ministry to His children there.
Our concordat with our brothers in India is another indication of His moving in the entire world. The work in Malaysia and Australia continues to prosper as does the effectiveness of the Formation Seminary which originates from that area. The teaching covers all of Southeast Asia, Africa and the United States.
We enjoy a concordat with the Province of the Holy Spirit, Anglican Rite and their Trinity Graduate School and Seminary in Tennessee and are discussing similar agreements with other like minded bodies.
The future of our work is in God’s hands, as well it should be. Our mission is to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and steadfast in following that leading. There are times when it may seem that personal issues try to overwhelm us and distract us from the ministry. Be assured that the Father sees and understands. His promise…” I will never leave you nor forsake you” remains true. Let us lean on that promise as we go forward in His name.
We look forward to many more years of this ministry of bringing the knowledge and reality of God’s presence to a lost and dying world.
“Father, we once again consecrate ourselves to Your service. With the birthing of this humble communion you have entrusted us with delivering the message of eternal life to your children. As we mature and increase in numbers and influence, we ask for Your Holy Spirit to guide and direct us in this ministry. As Your servant John the Baptist prayed, let us become less and You become more. Let the words of our mouth come directly from Your throne room and the meditations of our hearts be holy and acceptable unto You. All this we pray in the Precious Name of Jesus. Amen”
His servant and yours,
April 5, 2018
The Emmanuel Communion, Diocese of West Africa
It is with great pleasure and thanksgiving to God that we announce the establishment of the Diocese of West Africa. Our newest member of the House of Bishops, The Rt. Reverend Ibiso Igani has joined our humble Communion and assumed the See of West Africa. Bishop Igani is joined by several clergy in Nigeria, Liberia, Ghana, Cameroon and Gabon with additional inquiries from neighboring countries. We warmly welcome our new family members and pray God's greatest and best blessings on the ministries He has established in these clergymen.
Several of our new clergy are enrolled in the Formation College, the official seminary of the Emmanuel Communion. This learning resource is available to all interested in a theological education. Details may be found on the Foundation College page under the "About Us" tab above.
January 25, 2018
Church of the Holy Spirit, EC involvement in Revival on 1/20/18
Overview: Soon after Bishop Becchio and I planted the Church of the Holy Spirit in Jensen Beach [1/8/17], using the sanctuary offered to us by Pastor Guy Calvert of Jensen Beach Christian Church [JBCC], the Holy Spirit caused us pastors to consider a partnership for the presentation of a Revival for the stirring up of the Christian faith and the leading of unbelievers to Jesus Christ. This partnership created a mutual ministry between our two congregations. With a leadership formed from these two churches all necessary elements were put in place for the Revival to be shaped by the Spirit.
It was determined that we would begin at 1:00 pm and, if not otherwise extended by the Spirit, end by 8:00 pm on January 20, 2018. During this time six different preachers would offer God’s Word and, between sermons, Christian music would be offered. There would also be food and drink available at modest prices with no charge for those unable to pay. The preaching rota would consist of the following in the order they would preach: Pastor Guy Calvert of Jensen Beach Christian Church [who would also emcee the event]; Bishop Barry Becchio, Co-Pastor of Church of the Holy Spirit [EC]; Deacon Michael Monteiro, Church of the Holy Spirit as well as leader of a congregation at Jensen Dunes Assisted Living Facility; Archbishop Ed Skiba [who needs no introduction]; Bishop David Francoeur, Co-Pastor of Church of the Holy Spirit [EC]; and Bishop Kenny Berry, founder and evangelist of Grace Fellowship Worship Center in Belle Glade, FL.
On the day . . . There was much excitement as we prepared to begin the Revival and a palpable peace as well. Prior to this day we had all dealt with oppression from the enemy and the Lord delivered us through it so that we could minister in His strength! Every sermon tied together as the Spirit touched hearts and minds. An early signal that God had called this Revival into being was during Pastor Calvert’s sermon when he went to a couple in the front row and asked them their names. The man said in a gravely voice, “Satan” and we all knew that something was afoot. Pastor Calvert was undaunted by this and called all of the preachers up to pray for this man. As we all laid our hands on him Archbishop Skiba anointed him with holy oil and led the prayer for deliverance, healing, and salvation. Although quite vocal before the prayer, the man remained quiet for the rest of Pastor Calvert’s sermon and stayed for a time afterwards. [Pastor Calvert told us the next day that this man approached him at the close of the Revival and the pastor ministered to him into the early morning on Sunday; leading him to the Lord and salvation!] This set the pace for the Revival and there were many who received Jesus as Lord and Savior and Christians who experienced a renewal and enlivening of their relationship with the Lord!
With anointed preaching and blessed music the day became what the Lord promised us it would be: a new beginning to set the pace for ministry, not just for these two congregations, but for the work of the Church in this area! On Sunday morning, as Bishop Becchio and I were coming into the church to set up after JBCC’s worship, Pastor Calvert invited us to join them for their closing prayer. I was led to share something the Lord had given me about this Revival, a word of knowledge where He said: “Through this Revival I have sunk a deep well into the Living Waters and They will continue to flow unimpeded to bless, not just those who came, but, as the waters rise, all who are covered by them!” By this we understand that God is empowering our ministries - and we must see this broadly as including the EAC and beyond - so that we are participating in a worldwide revival of Godly proportions! We are humbled to be a part of this.
The Rt. Rev. David R. Francoeur, M.Div., O.S.B Vicar General of the Denomination
New Year update 2018
With the New Year come new aspirations, new goals, new directions, new perspectives and new challenges. Thank God He is the same yesterday, today and forever. He never changes, nor does His Word.
Our Emmanuel Communion has had a few changes in the previous year. We have welcomed Father Emmanuel T.K. Doe of Liberia, West Africa and his congregation, the Charismatic Empowerment Church, into our fold. We have engaged in a concordat with the Anglican Church of India, CIPBC and have welcomed them and their Metropolitan, The Most Reverend Samuel T. Ponniah, into partnership with us. Father Bernard Lim was ordained to the sacred order of priests in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia and our own Bishop Barry Becchio was named Abbot General of the Emmanuel Communion Order of St. Benedict.
Our growth is slow but steady as we try very hard not to get out ahead of the Holy Spirit. There are other new developments and inquiries that will be announced at a later date. Please continue to pray for God's guidance as we seek His will and follow His lead. Our next House of Bishops meeting is scheduled for January 26, 2018 in Palm City, Florida.
House of Bishops meeting August 25, 2017
NOTICE and INVITATION
As we search for the ideal path and the correct model to follow, many diversions and distractions are met along the way. Our House of Bishops has recently met and has voted concerning our identity and the way we would present ourselves to God’s people. The name Emmanuel Anglican Communion was given to us in prayerful consensus to signify our mission… to assure people of the truth of the name “Emmanuel”… God is truly with us.
As our ethos is primarily liturgical it seemed appropriate to maintain the name Anglican which would signify our worship style. As we have progressed in establishing the foundation of our Communion we have discovered more who we are, but more importantly, who we are not. There are situations and practices within mainstream Anglicanism that do not resonate with who we believe God has called us to be. Consequently, the House of Bishops has voted to simplify our name to the “Emmanuel Communion.”
The Emmanuel Communion will maintain our liturgical form of worship and tradition, follow the Prayer Book, celebrate the Eucharist at every service and continue to preach God’s uncompromised Word. Nothing will change from who we are now except the name. For further clarification as to our beliefs and identity we invite an examination of our Constitution and Canons which will be posted on our website … eacommunion.org.
To the INVITATION. As we grow in the Lord’s work there is a need for church planters. The EC is presently in the Southeastern US, Texas, Malaysia, Australia and Africa. We also have a Bishop in the process of relocating to France and have an affiliation in India. Having been incorporated in May of 2016 we are a relatively new family of churches but feel we have a purpose in our little corner of God’s Kingdom.
Our invitation focus is on Seminary students and disassociated clergy who may be interested in coming under Apostolic covering as they minister in the vineyard. Our Bishops are in full Apostolic Succession in a line back to St. Peter and we have a Benedictine Rule that we follow. We would encourage any interested persons to visit the website and get a better feel for who we are. Contact information is available there or you may email the Office of the Presiding Bishop directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
God bless you greatly as we toil together in The Kingdom.
First EAC Convocation, February 25th, 2017
The first Convocation of the Emmanuel Anglican Communion will be held February 24-25 in Ft Pierce, Florida at St. Peter's Church on Jenkins Rd. just off Hwy 70. The House of Bishops will meet Friday evening from 6-10 PM for their business meeting and the Open Convocation will begin at 9:30 AM Saturday morning with various ministry reports and opportunities, input from the Laity as well as a visionary message from the Presiding Bishop. We will conclude with a Celebration of the Holy Eucharist. All are welcome to attend.
As our Communion is young (less than one year) we are still in a formation process. Scritpture tells us to "...despise not small beginnings." As we are widely disbursed throughout the world and, as with many ministries, we are of limited financial resource, our physical numbers at the Saturday gathering may be less than we'd like. We gather nonetheless and celebrate the vision God has given the EAC to show the world the reality of "God With Us." In a time of questionable physical security and moral decline, we have been given the mission to stand on God's Word as the only certainty in an uncertain society.
We look forward to greeting any persons interested in becoming a part of this Family of Christ. For those that can not be there but may be interested you are encouraged to contact us via email or snail mail. If you can not be present we covet your prayers for God's guidance and direction as we strive to do His will. We pray... Come Holy Spirit and speak to our hearts... in Jesus Name. Amen.
Archbishop Edward J. Skiba, OSB
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