The International Free Protestant Episcopal Church
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To us the essence of Anglican Christianity is that, within the guidelines of scripture, tradition, and reason, we can agree to disagree but come to the same Table  even if on different sides. We cleave to the middle way, in which we each have whatever level of personal relationship with God we are comfortable with, relying on corporate worship to keep us centred within the boundaries of love. Church Ministers must remain free and unrestrained either in conscience, intelligence, or feelings, because they represent diversity in Unity.

From 1885 to 2005

The early story of the Free Protestant Episcopal Church is the story of the life of our first ordaining Archbishop The Most Reverend Lord LEON CHECKEMIAN, D.D.,LL.D. He arrived in England in 1885. The Archbishop of Canterbury (Dr.Edward W. Benson )was able to offer little practical support to maintain him. He subsequently found a warmer reception among Scottish Presbyterians, notably with the Rev'd J.G. Cunningham of St. Luke's Free Church, Edinburgh. In 1889 he is reported to have been preaching in the Presbyterian Churches of Belfast, notably Berry Street Church and St. Enoch's Church, Belfast and it was noted that  he enjoys the confidence of and is warmly recommended by the most eminent men in the Presbyterian Church of Scotland.In 1890 he was still preaching and lecturing in Belfast. It was at this time that he was taken up by Archbishop Plunket, Anglican Archbishop of Dublin. Checkemian was still in Belfast on 5 September 1890 and had visited the Archbishop. Archbishop Plunket dreamt of weakening the power of the Church of Rome by promoting Reformed Episcopal Churches among indigenous Christians outside the immediate sphere of influence of Anglicanism. He took as his basis the decision of the 1878 Lambeth Conference to make a solem protest against usurpations of the See of Rome and an undertaking that All sympathy is due from the Anglican communion to the churches and individuals protesting against these errors and labouring it may be under special difficulties from the assaults of unbelief as well as from the pretensions of Rome.He received Checkemian into the Church of Ireland and on 4 November 1890 granted him a General Licence in his own diocese of Dublin. Another license, issued from Dublin on 25 May 1851, gives a much fuller picture of Archbishop Plunket's scheme. He was clearly satiesfied with Checkemian's adherence to the Reformed doctrines, you have duly signified to us in writing your hearty assent to the Doctrine of the Church of Ireland and of the other churches of the Anglican communion and your intention to teach nothing contrary to the same and have moreover stated that wathever public services you may be called upon to hold will be ordered so far as circumstances will permit after the model of the Books of Common Prayer used by the churches of said communion. It is clear that Plunket saw himself as giving provisional episcopal oversight to what he hoped would be a future self-governing independent episcopal community.The outbreak of renewed serious persecution of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire, which began with the Sassoun Uprising of 1894, would have been a strong deterrence to return to Armenia. From 23 June 1896 until 4 January 1901 he was living in London. It was at this time that he came into contact with a number of bishops of independent jurisdictions and it was through these contacts that he probably resolved to follow through Plunket's vision by establishing his own church. One of these was Alfred Spencer Richardson, who had been consecrated bishop of the Reformed Episcopal Church at Philadelphia in 1879.

The International Free Protestant Episcopal Church do not wish to do away with our offices and liturgy. We are one in heart, in spirit, and in faith with our Founders and Pioneer Bishops, who at the very beginning of the existence of this church sought to mold and fashion the ecclesiastical constitution which they had inherited from the Armenian Catholic Church and the Church of England and we return to their position and claim to be the old and true "Free Protestant Episcopal Church" of the days of its founding and we claim an unbroken historical connection through the Reformation, the Church of England, with the Church of Christ from the earliest Christian era and will not depart from it. Amen.
The historic expression of worship is preserved in the Book of Common Prayer. While changes have occured over the past years, no changes could be made which changed the 'substance of the faith.' Future revisions will also be subject to this provision.

The 'Protestant' nature of this Church; The International Free Protestant Episcopal Church has always seemed to wish to distinguish itself as clearly as possible from the dominant Roman Catholic Church.

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