Our Beliefs

The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God,
    the Father, the Almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
    the only Son of God,
    eternally begotten of the Father,
    God from God, Light from Light,
    true God from true God,
    begotten, not made,
    of one Being with the Father.
    Through him all things were made.
    For us and for our salvation
        he came down from heaven:
    by the power of the Holy Spirit
        he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
        and was made man.
    For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
        he suffered death and was buried.
        On the third day he rose again
            in accordance with the Scriptures;
        he ascended into heaven
            and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
     He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
        and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
    who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
    With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.
    He has spoken through the Prophets.
    We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
    We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
    We look for the resurrection of the dead,
        and the life of the world to come. Amen.

 

The Chicago Quadrilateral (1886)
We, Bishops of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America, in Council
assembled as Bishops in the Church of God, do hereby solemnly declare to all whom it may
concern, and especially to our fellow-Christians of the different Communions in this land,
who, in their several spheres, have contended for the religion of Christ:

1.    Our earnest desire that the Savior's prayer, "That we all may be one," may, in its
deepest and truest sense, be speedily fulfilled;

2.    That we believe that all who have been duly baptized with water, in the name of the
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, are members of the Holy Catholic Church.

3.    That in all things of human ordering or human choice, relating to modes of worship
and discipline, or to traditional customs, this Church is ready in the spirit of love and
humility to forego all preferences of her own;

4.    That this Church does not seek to absorb other Communions, but rather, co-operating
with them on the basis of a common Faith and Order, to discountenance schism, to heal the
wounds of the Body of Christ, and to promote the charity which is the chief of Christian
graces and the visible manifestation of Christ to the world.

But furthermore, we do hereby affirm that the Christian unity . . .can be restored only by
the return of all Christian communions to the principles of unity exemplified by the
undivided Catholic Church during the first ages of its existence; which principles we believe
to be the substantial deposit of Christian Faith and Order committed by Christ and his
Apostles to the Church unto the end of the world, and therefore incapable of compromise
or surrender by those who have been ordained to be its stewards and trustees for the
common and equal benefit of all men.


As inherent parts of this sacred deposit, and therefore as essential to the restoration of unity
among the divided branches of Christendom, we account the following, to wit:

1.    The Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as the revealed Word of God.

2.    The Nicene Creed as the sufficient statement of the Christian Faith.

3.    The two Sacraments,--Baptism and the Supper of the Lord,--ministered with
unfailing use of Christ's words of institution and of the elements ordained by Him.

4.    The Historic Episcopate, locally adapted in the methods of its administration to the
varying needs of the nations and peoples called of God into the unity of His Church.



Furthermore, Deeply grieved by the sad divisions which affect the Christian Church in
our own land, we hereby declare our desire and readiness, so soon as there shall be any
authorized response to this Declaration, to enter into brotherly conference with all or any
Christian Bodies seeking the restoration of the organic unity of the Church, with a view to
the earnest study of the conditions under which so priceless a blessing might happily be
brought to pass.


Note: While the above form of the Quadrilateral was adopted by the House of Bishops, it was not
enacted by the House of Deputies, but rather incorporated in a general plan referred for study and action
to a newly created Joint Commission on Christian Reunion.

 

 
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