"He who would climb to a lofty height must go by steps, not leaps."
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The Province of the Ecumenical Society of Saint Augustine of Canterbury (TESSAC) is a Priestly Society comprising clergy and missions and was founded by The Right Reverend Robert C. McBride BA (Hons), OSP.
Its current Superior General is The Most Reverend Martyn Douglas. TESSAC is not a member society of any mainstream church, such as the Roman Catholic or Orthodox Churches, but does possess valid, pre-Vatican II, Roman Catholic Lines of Apostolic Successions.
We consider as "valid and orthodox", and our Ecumenical outreach extends to, those ecclesial communions who can clearly trace their lines of apostolic succession back through the historic episcopacy directly to our Lord Jesus Christ and His apostles and who are holding to historic, apostolic and catholic order and practice in their faith and worship, as defined by the ancient and undivided Church, reflected in the teaching of the first seven ecumenical councils of the early Church.
We further believe that God has commissioned us to affirm, recognise, and pray for all of these branches as members of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church and to embrace and receive the clergy and laity of all these branches as true brothers and sisters in the communion of Christ's One, Holy Church, His body in heaven and on earth.
We believe that God has called us by the grace and mercy of our Blessed Lord Jesus Christ, to be at least a prophetic pointer of a prototype of such unity, both in an underlying attitude of humility and charity, as well as by the works, worship and mission that we pray constantly, bear witness to that divine hope and calling with open minds and hearts.
In practical terms this unity, or prototype of unity as Catholic Christians, will be worked out in our embrace of a diversity of historic, orthodox catholic liturgies, as used by the major branches of Catholic and Orthodox Christianity from the beginning.
These would include the Divine Liturgy celebrated by our Orthodox Brother Bishops, the Tridentine Liturgy (Latin /The Vernacular), the Novus Ordo of the Roman Catholic Church, some Anglican Liturgies, Western Rite Orthodox liturgies, and others recognised as expressions of rites used historically within the broad scope of orthodox, catholic Christianity worldwide.
Mindful that Saint Augustine of Canterbury was sent to these Islands to spread The Word, and establish The Faith, TESSAC seeks to continue with this work as we enter an age where people are abandoning their faith. Saint Augustine of Canterbury struggled in his mission but in the words of Pope Gregory The Great, in a letter to Saint Augustine: "He who would climb to a lofty height must go by steps, not leaps," therefore we too take comfort from and are guided by those words as we work to continue Saint Augustine's work.
'Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.'
Universal declaration of Human Rights, Article 18.