The Order of St. Michael the Archangel
The Canons Regular of the Order of St. Michael the Archangel
A Society of Catholic Renewal:
The Order of St. Michael the Archangel is an Order of Religious Life for men which is committed to bringing Catholic Renewal to the Anglican Tradition. The Order is served by the Canons Regular of the Order of Saint Michael the Archangel. Our spirituality is inspired by the tradition of Canons Regular within the Church.
What are “Canons Regular”?
Canons Regular is a historic designation for a particular form of Religious Life.
This form of Religious Life is found in various places in the history of the Church, but was most clearly formed by the lives of St. Augustine and St. Norbert. St. Augustine is one of the greatest Bishops in the history of the Church, and he structured the life of his local Church so that his Priests lived a Common life of Prayer and Worship. St. Norbert was a Bishop who adopted the Rule of St. Augustine, and founded the “Premonstratensians” or “Norbertines”, a group of Monasteries that were modeled after this form of Religious Life.
In the ancient Church, those who lived a Religious Life were designated as either “Monks” (who lived under a Monastic Rule and who may or may not be Priests) or “Canons” (Priests, who lived not under a Monastic Rule but under Canon Law – i.e. Church Law). Those Priests who served at a Cathedral Church were called by the title “Canon”, and some Priests were given the honorary title of “Canon” by the Bishop for a particular role of authority or service within the Diocese.
With the establishment of the Premonstratensians by St. Norbert, those Priests who lived a communal life of Prayer and Worship under a Rule, yet who served in the community and in Parish Churches as Priests (half monk – half Priest), fit neither the designation of “Monk” or “Canon.” So those Priests which lived this type of Religious Life were designated as “Canons Regular” (i.e. – Priests under a Rule of Life), whereas other Priests became known as Canons Secular (i.e. – Priests under Canon Law only).
So “Canons Regular” are Priests who serve under a Rule of Life which binds them to a Life of particular Obedience, Daily Prayer, and Service.
A SUMMARY OF THE ORDER OF ST. MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL
Imitators of St. Michael
Like St. Michael the Archangel, we are committed to Serving Jesus Christ, Defending the Faith of the Church, and the Salvation of Souls.
Imitators of the Ancient Canons Regular
Like the Great Canons Regular in the History of the Church, we are committed to a life of both Contemplation and Mission – understanding that the Mission of the Church flows directly from an Encounter with Jesus Christ.
Fundamental Declarations of the Order
- The Great Commission: Go and Make Disciples (Matt. 28:18-20)
- The Great Commandment: Love God – Love People (Matt. 22:37-40)
The Charism of the Order
- Communal Life - Fostering a Community of Faith in Charity and Service
- Divine Presence – Seeking an Encounter with God through Loving One Another
- Church Planting – Planting Churches that will Proclaim the Gospel and Cultivate the Spirituality of the Order
- Anglo-Catholic Heritage – A Sacramental, Liturgical, Pastoral Life of Faith
- Spiritual Formation – Life-long Christian Formation from the Tradition of our Faith
- Our Superior is our Spiritual Father; we serve him in obedience
- The Superior assigns and oversees the responsibilities of those within the Order
- The Superior determines the Offices and Roles of those in the Order
- The Superior is responsible to guard the Faith, Unity, and Mission of the Order
OUR RULE OF LIFE
Our Rule of Life dictates that we form our Spiritual Life through a devotion to:
- The Eucharist – at minimum, a weekly celebration or attendance at Mass
- The Daily Office and Personal Prayer – The Liturgy of the Hours should be observed, with daily Examination of Conscience and Act of Contrition
- Continual Study – Spiritual Reading, Meditation, Continual Theological Education
- Hospitality – Hospitality as a way of life, serving the Church and the World
- Obedience – Obedience to our Rule of Life, our Superior, Our Bishop, others the Lord has over us
- Penance – the Sacrament of Confession; recommended monthly from a regular Confessor
- Mission and Apostolic Service – A Life of Evangelistic Witness