Shaking loose the bonds of man made Churches

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    The following is the story of another soul won over to Christ and His Church. Mr. Moore, as the story tells us was raised Baptist, and is now in the process of seeking the Pastoral Provision which former Protestant ministers who have come into the Church can apply for if they still feel that they have a vocation.

    Pope John Paul II approved a Rite of the Mass that allowed for some of the traditional expressions of the Faith that remained when Anglicanism broke with the Church, [i:3pe2r1vw](Anglicanism quickly devolved into several schools of thought from Lutheran and Calvanist. Methodism and Quakerism, as well as (some forms of) Baptists owe their history to Hanry VIII’s breaking the unity of the Body of Christ, to in the 1800’s a return of many Catholic teachings and practices.) [/i:3pe2r1vw]The Holy Father, as a concession to things truly Catholic which where also Authentically Anglican, in the hopes of making welcome those who entered the Church and brought with them compatable rites and practices approved what can be called a Missal and Breviary entitled the Book of Divine Worship. While the Rites vary from the Rites you will find in most Roman Catholic Churches, they are fully Catholic. Any Catholic in a state of grace may receive the Sacraments in the parishes of the Pastoral Provision, as they are 100% Catholic. Now on to Mr. Moore’s story……….

    [b:3pe2r1vw]Jeffery W. Moore was born in Henrietta , TX . He has been married to Ellen Ashley Moore for 12 years. They have 3 children: Emma age 7, Lily age 5, and Jack age 2.

    Jeff was raised as a Baptist and felt called to serve in ministry at an early age. After graduating from high school he spent one year at a local university and then attended the University of North Texas for 2-1/2 years. It was at UNT that he met his future wife, who was attending TCU in Fort Worth . After his time at UNT Jeff and Ellie started a year long courtship and were married on January 21, 1995. After their wedding Jeff started attending Tarleton State University in order to finish his degree. He completed his studies in Horticulture and Landscape Management, graduating in June of 1997.

    After graduation he and his wife moved back to his hometown of Henrietta where he started his own landscaping company for a time. Later in that year he and his wife felt that it was time to find a church to attend regularly. After attending his childhood Baptist church, they both decided that they needed to find something else. On the second Sunday of Advent in 1997 they attended the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Wichita Falls , TX . Jeff started once again to feel a vocation to the ministry and after talking with his pastor (who also subsequently converted to the Catholic faith) he went to speak with Bishop Iker, the Episcopal bishop of Fort Worth . Bishop Iker was very cautious about sending to Jeff to seminary because he was such a recent convert and it was three years before he was allowed to begin his seminary studies. By this time Ellie and Jeff had one daughter, Emma Noelle, and were expecting their second child.

    Jeff attended Nashotah House Theological Seminary in Nashotah , WI . He and his family arrived in August of 2001. Their second daughter, Lilian Marie, was born the following spring on the Feast of the Annunciation and was baptized just a few days later on the Easter Vigil at the seminary chapel.

    While at Nashotah House Jeff fostered a devotion to the Virgin Mary and started to pray the rosary. It was also at Nashotah House that he discovered a deep love for the Anglo-catholic style of liturgical worship. During his second and third years at Nashotah he was also a choral scholar in the seminary choir.

    In the fall of 2003 Ellie became pregnant with their third child. Jeff was ordained to the Episcopal diaconate in March of 2004 and finished his studies in May of that year. It was at this time that he was also informed that he would be the curate at St. Vincent’s Cathedral in Bedford , TX , which is the Cathedral of the Episcopal Ft. Worth diocese.

    After moving back to Texas in June 2004 he began his duties at the Cathedral. His wife gave birth to their son, John Christopher (Jack), on July 22 of that same year. Jeff was ordained to the Episcopal priesthood on Saturday, September 18, 2004.

    During his time at St. Vincent ‘s Jeff read books by John Henry Cardinal Newman and Dr. Thomas Howard. The writings of these two men, along with others, changed his complete outlook on what it meant to be a part of the Church. During his time at seminary he had assumed, along with most other students at his seminary, that he was already a part of the Catholic Church. But after reading Cardinal Newman and Dr. Howard he could not retain that assumption. He began to question the claims of Anglo-catholics and started to seek the source of all Truth. He finally realized that without a source of Authority he could not really know the Truth. Within the non-authoritative Episcopal church that he was a part of, even the Truth he believed in was only his own opinion. In addition to this he also came to realize that the unity of the Church was vitally important and within his own denomination he was not a part of the unity that Christ had prayed for His Church.

    With these new-found convictions Jeff contacted Fr. Hawkins at St. Mary the Virgin Catholic Church in Arlington , TX . This, of course, was the beginning of the end of his time in the Episcopal church. This was the early spring of 2005.

    In the late summer of the same year Jeff met with the new Catholic bishop of Fort Worth , Bishop Kevin Vann. At this time Bishop Vann started a period of discernment with Jeff to make sure that his leaving the Episcopal church was done for the right reasons. In other words, the bishop was helping Jeff ensure that he was truly becoming Catholic, instead of just running away from the problems of the Episcopal church. In the spring of 2006 Bishop Vann believed Jeff wanted to be Catholic for the right reasons and invited him and his wife to be confirmed on Holy Saturday.

    After leaving the Episcopal church and becoming Catholic Jeff took a job at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in order to help support his family. This also began a period of discerning whether or not God wanted him to enter the Pastoral Provision process to become a Catholic priest. Jeff had not joined the Catholic Church assuming he would pursue the priesthood. Instead, he had made the conscious decision that he was only joining because he knew that was where God was leading him.

    After many months of prayer and speaking with Bishop Vann and priests that had gone through the Pastoral Provision, Jeff believed that God was still calling him to the priesthood. A big indication of this for him was that he still felt a strong desire to celebrate the Sacraments, especially Mass, and to preach the Faith.

    In May of this year Jeff met with Archbishop Gomez and Bishop Vann. They informed Jeff of their plan to bring him to San Antonio and have him begin the Pastoral Provision process. After Bishop Vann contacted Fr. Phillips and explained the situation, Fr. Phillips invited Jeff to come visit the parish. Jeff and his wife visited Our Lady of the Atonement on May 7-8, 2007. On Tuesday the 8th, Jeff was hired to teach fifth grade boys for the 2007-2008 school year and to help in the church as well. He and his family will be moving in mid-June and Jeff will then officially start his paperwork for the Pastoral Provision.

    He and his family are very excited about this wonderful opportunity and they look forward to many years of service in the church and school.

    Ellen Ashley (McKenzie) Moore was born in Tulsa , OK . She was reared in the Catholic Church but was not confirmed until 2006 when she was confirmed with her husband. She is a graduate of Texas Christian University and holds a B.A. in English with a minor in Journalism and another minor in Art History. For the past ten years she has worked at home as a freelance desktop publisher.

    Emma Noelle Moore was born on June 3, 1999 in Wichita Falls , TX . She will be entering the third grade at the Atonement Academy for the 2007-2008 school year.

    Lilian Marie Moore was born on March 25, 2002. She will be entering Kindergarten at the Atonement Academy for the 2007-2008 school year.

    John Christopher (Jack) Moore was born on July 22, 2004. He will not be in school this coming year but will instead focus on tormenting his sisters. A comment on his nickname: Jack’s father Jeff has a deep love for C.S. Lewis, but instead of naming his son Clive Staples he calls him Jack, which was also Lewis’s nickname.[/b:3pe2r1vw]

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