Two unique and historic services were held in Hong Kong prior to the commencement of the Anglican Consultative Meeting (ACC) being held in Hong Kong from 15th to 25th September.
Early Morning Eucharist for Holy Cross Day
The first service was an early morning Eucharist in celebration of Holy Cross Day. This was attended by members of the Primates' and ACC Standing Committees, and early ACC arrivals and staff.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Revd George Carey, was the celebrant and his successor, Archbishop Rowan Williams, Primate of Wales was the preacher. In his sermon on the Cross, the Archbishop spoke of the reality of sin and its effect on humanity.
"All I want to say about the image of the Holy Cross this morning is that the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ is where we wake up," Archbishop Williams said. "Awake sleeper and rise from the dead and Christ will give you life."
"Our sin is like sleep, like a bad dream. We are locked in ourselves. The serious tangled insides of the human mind, the human heart, human speech trap us more and more. Here the reality of God stands against the reality of our minds and hearts. Awake sleeper and rise from the dead. And Christ shall give you life, Christ shall give you reality, Christ shall give you truth."
Ordination Service in St John's Cathedral
Later in the day ACC members joined with Archbishop Peter Kwong and parishioners from the Diocese of Hong Kong Island for an ordination liturgy in St John's Cathedral. Samuel Tang and Stephen Hung were ordained deacon, and the Rev Dorothy Lau was ordained to the priesthood.
Archbishop Kwong presided at the Ordination and celebrated the Eucharist, and Archbishop Carey was the preacher. Archbishop Rowan Williams and other visiting Primates and Bishops and priests all participated in the laying on of hands of the newly ordained and priest. A choir of nearly 100 from three parishes provided the music.
Archbishop Carey reminded the ordinands that in their ministry they were called to serve Christ's flock, to nourish and defend the flock, and to "know where the pastures are to be found."
"As you grow in the study of God's word, so you will become a person who can lead others to the living water. In so doing, it is not so much that you gradually become perfect; or that you acquire the right answers to all the questions that others will throw at you," Archbishop Carey said. No. It is not even that you will become better at making good decisions, but that you will become better and better at discerning what really matters in reaching whatever decisions you eventually make. Pray for courage. Pray for zeal. Pray for such an abiding love of God's people that you constantly find yourself acting and speaking on their behalf "so that they too can taste and see that the Lord is good."
Dr Carey also encouraged them to "Pass to new generations the tradition which we have received as Anglican Christians." He pointed out the difference between tradition and traditionalism.
"Tradition is the living faith of the dead; traditionalism is the dead faith of the living. Traditionalism is when we refuse to move a flowerpot because my Grandmother placed the church flowers in that very place and pot 70 years ago. Tradition is when we keep godly customs alive because they are as real today as they were 70 years ago," Archbishop Carey said.
St John's Cathedral was filled for the service and there was an overflow congregation in the Hall nearby. A huge stand was erected for a series of group photos, with nearly 200 in one shot.
Article from: the ACC News Team - Dan England, Margaret Rodgers and James Rosenthal