THE WOODLANDS, TEXAS: Anglican church pastor named bishop of new diocese
By Jonathan Garris
THE TOMBALL POTPOURRI
April 23, 2013
When Clark Lowenfield, senior pastor at HopePointe Anglican Church in The Woodlands, learned he would become Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of the Western Gulf Coast, he had a couple of reactions.
"First, it was a very humbling experience," Lowenfield said. "Then all of the sudden, you realize how much you don't know. There's a sense of amazement that God will use anybody, even me."
The newly formed diocese will consist of 12 churches throughout Louisiana and Texas. Lowenfield's responsibilities as bishop includes overseeing these current and future congregations.
At his consecration inside The Woodlands United Methodist Church Saturday, priests, bishops and deacons from around the world gathered to celebrate and welcome Lowenfield as a leading member in the Anglican congregation. Lowenfield received prayers from his fellow bishops, as well as a staff to act as the shepherd to his congregation.
As another form of ordination, the event centered around communion, and Lowenfield took vows of faith and service. Among those in attendance included Robert Duncan, archbishop of the Anglican Church in North America, and chief consecrator Rev. Nathan Gasatura, representing The Most Rev. Onesphore Rwaje as the archbishop of the Anglican Church of Rwanda.
Lowenfield served under Gasatura prior to joining the Anglican Church in North America.
As bishop, Lowenfield hopes to focus on planting healthy churches that will benefit the congregations and the communities they call home.
"We have a culture that's struggling; a lot of people are looking for answers," Lowenfield said. "My hope is that we plant churches in communities where people will be safe to come and seek God and honor Jesus Christ. That's the thing I focus on every day of my life."
Lowenfield said that having members of the One Mission church group present for the consecration was an exciting experience. The group consists of senior pastors from 32 area churches associated for the shared purpose of performing service projects for the community, communitywide worship services and spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.
As one of the senior pastors who helped start One Mission, Lowenfield stressed the importance of the group and said he will continue to be a part of that group as bishop.
"What God has done in The Woodlands is that he has caused a number of churches to realize that we're not supposed to be divided," Lowenfield said. "We might worship differently on some things, but we're called to be the church together."
Lowenfield's participation in One Mission is fueled by his faith not only in God, but also in his fellow brothers and sisters of faith.
"I believe I'm part of a movement not only in this region but across the country that desires to help people realize they are loved unconditionally by God," Lowenfield said. "I wish those out in the community would visit or join any of the One Mission churches in the region."
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