Church of England Bishop (Anglican Bishop of Ebbsfleet) Jonathan is received into the Catholic Church.

Church of England Bishop (Anglican Bishop of Ebbsfleet) Jonathan joins the Catholic Church.


On Friday afternoon, Jonathan the Anglican prelate announced that “after a long period of prayer, which has been among the most testing periods of my life”, he was quitting to defect to Catholicism.

The exact reasons for his departure remain unknown. However, a source close to the Bishop, who has been away on retreat until this week, claimed that he was unhappy with the direction of the Church regarding its spirituality, orthodoxy and allowing of same-sex unions.

Nevertheless, I am not in joy because he converted to the Catholic faith and this may shock some of you. My Joy is the sincerity with which he follows Jesus Christ and this sincerity led him to the Catholic faith by helping him acknowledge the truth, studying them amidst its ups and downs and knowing full well that the Catholic faith is on a pilgrim, on a journey to the truth, towards God, in spite of the surrounding human elements.

Seeking the truth led him to acknowledge her rich traditions, her spirit, spirituality and spiritualities, and others.

It can only lead him deeply more into Christ and this is what Jesus wants: those who worship Him in Spirit and Truth( John 4: 23-24). These two must be considered always.

Are you open to the Spirit and Truth?

You can only be at your best in your Christian faith when you walk in the spirit, striving and seeking after the truth for every good criticism seeks and searches for the truth.

For some, this truth is may not be an arrival but truth that builds towards the Truth, for in as much as we are alive, we may not arrive at the Truth, but continue aiming at the truth.

In this sense Karl Popper may have been right to talk about nearness to the truth in science; Verisimilitude.

What animal is Verisimilitude ?

Verisimilitude (or truthlikeness) is the notion that some propositions are closer to being true than other propositions. The problem of verisimilitude is the problem of articulating what it takes for one false theory to be closer to the truth than another false theory.

Hence, my point of departure in reconciliation to faith. Certain faiths are closer to the truth in matters of the Christian faith. Yet, one must be closest.

It follows therefore that a man who is near to the truth is far better than the man who is far away from the truth.

So if seeking for truth and walking in the spirit makes us best in faith, then seeking after the truth and walking in the spirit in matters of the Christian faith can make the best protestants become Catholics while the lack of truth and spirit may equally make the worst Catholics become protestants.

This doesn’t point to the protestants in general but the person of the Catholic fold who walks not in the spirit and Truth.

So, it must be acknowledged for the sake of truth that there are some who are in the Catholic faith without that spirit, and without truth. This is not because of lack of spirit and Truth in the faith but because they are in the faith priory for the pride, power and status(I am Catholic).

Some are there but steeped in ignorance of the same faith that outsiders appreciate and seek after, which they eventually find like Jonathan.

Some are in the faith but in ignorance because there is no one to teach them or are not interested in what they practice because his/her teacher practice otherwise.

Some are in the faith but they are really not in the faith; they are really outsiders because the faith preaks their conscience so much that they want to leave. So, they have not been really amongst us.

That’s why even from within and without some who know the truth refuse to acknowledge that truth because of the struggle for convenience(truth isn’t very convenient), position, power, lust for the money(avarice), etc.

Now one understands a little why Jesus said that many (outsiders) shall come and stay with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob while the insiders shall be cast out into outer darkness …(Matt 8:11-12)

They are cast out with the Canon of truth and spirit. Truth and the Spirit go together to produce faith which they shall never then have. This is the principle of differentiation.

In your relationship with Christ what do you seek?

Whatever is it that you seek, is it sought in Truth?

Whatever you seek, is it sought in Spirit?

In faith, only in spirit and Truth shall you reach your destination amidst every historical human mistakes and elements, amidst every confusion, otherwise, you are just socialising.

And I tell thee most solemnly, only those who seek God in Spirit and Truth shall find Him.


©Fr. Henry Charles N. Umelechi

Truth Series.

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