Guidelines for Clergy Affiliation with the UECC

This document lays out the guidelines for the acceptance of postulants (new clergy) or existing clergy desiring incardination into our organization.

All information in this document can be changed, without notice or reason, by the Patriarch.

As an organization we wish to provide a safe haven for all clergy, whether they are new to their calling or existing presbytery. In our world today, the after affects of past adversities have engulfed our faith. Rampant denominationalism, schisms, abuse of power, intolerance and general hypocrisy have undermined the very foundations of the church universal.  We truly empathize with our fellow clergy who desire nothing more than to bring our faith to the people humbly and to the best of their abilities within their calling. Existing Clergy; have you been in a position of abuse or misuse by other organizations? Tired of the rhetoric, church politics and secular politics eroding your faith? Tired of rampant intolerance, bigotry and general misbehavior? Wish to find shelter from the insanity that seems to be prevalent in many organizations today?

We offer an opportunity to join our organization and to work closely with us to limit the politics and intolerance. Whether a new clergy member seeking their calling or the experienced presbyter who is disenfranchised with their current organization, we may have a home for you.

Our philosophy: Seek individuals who desire clergy status for the 'right' reasons

We take vocations very seriously. So seriously, in fact, that we no longer accept applications from just anyone. Too many people are seeking ordination for the wrong reasons; or they are seeking priesthood for valid reasons but are simply not able to properly perform priestly duties. Many lay people who feel called have never done discernment with a trained spiritual director.

The issues we face in the Independent Church are numerous, but the most disturbing and disruptive is 'church hopping'. This is the process where clergy move from one organization to another, never staying with an organization for more than two years and in many cases a lot less. Much of this revolves around collecting Apostolic Successions, looking to gain 'titles' or assumed power. We denounce this practice. This is not an issue with the mainstream churches, as clergy in those organizations are legally 'hired' and 'paid'. They lose their 'job' they may never get hired by another organization. We do NOT operate a a business, so the option of holding clergy hostage by finances is not an option. 

We cannot solves issues of this caliber. It would take a governing organization and a huge number of bishops in agreement to change this. Yet, if there were a central governing body of all the independent churches, then we would become just like the 'mainstream' churches we distance ourselves from. Attempts at centralizing a governing body has been suggested and even attempted, and the first process put into place was requesting finances from the clergy or dioceses to operate the governing body. This is not the church that Christ or the Apostles envisioned. The Apostles worked in secular jobs to support their own missions. Some were carpenters, field workers, masons, fisherman or others. When they were done travelling to spread the word, they came home to their families to live a secular life. Paul is the perfect example; he was a tent maker by trade.

Hence, the United Episcopal Catholic Communion governs itself to the highest of standards. While we respect other independent organizations, we will never operate as a business with financial indebtedness to any governing group and will determine the validity of our canons, rubrics, beliefs and ethics.

For anyone joining this organization, we do expect a certain amount of loyalty. The training, formation, discernment and other aspects are all tied to the Priestly Promise. The priestly promise is sworn before both God and man, and the expectation is for the clergy to spread the word to the people, obey their bishop and uphold the values of this organization.


Postulants: New Clergy with little or no specific training.

First, we wish to be clear that there are NO requirements to have a degree from any University Seminary that subscribes to the 'secular accreditation model'. In the United States accreditation of any type was purely optional until the passing of the G.I Act in 1945. The only valid reasons for accreditation are: Government loans and grants, financial tracking, monitor administrative processes and affirmative action. Accreditation has little to do with the actual curriculum. For 1912 years since the death/resurrection of our Lord, clergy were trained in a more monastic environment or under apprenticeship. University training was reserved for 'theologians', those that desire to research, debate or translate/interpret.

Most Independent Churches operate with non-stipend (unpaid) clergy, who are expected to hold secular employment to support themselves. Even in the large mainstream churches (like the Church of England) the number of non-stipend clergy has increased massively over the years. 

We highly recommend that new postulants take part in our private and integral seminary; St. Charles Borromeo Seminary. Our coursework is self paced and based heavily on more monastic or apprenticeship training.

A criminal background check is required before the process begins. This criminal background check is at the expense of the candidate. 

The postulant will also have other formation tasks; one to one interviews with members of the bishops consistory, mandatory reading, probationary periods, demonstrating proficiency at day to day clergy tasks and others as required by the Patriarch.

After the period of training and formations, at the discretion of the Patriarch, the postulant may be allowed to practice as a licensed minister, ordained apostolic deacon or ordained apostolic priest. In all cases the new clergy will operate under a probationary period no less than sic (6) calendar months.

It is the full and unquestionable right of the Patriarch of the organization to waive the requirement for a new postulant to attend the seminary. There is always the option open to train clergy in a pure, and anciently proven, apprenticeship with practicing clergy.

Incardination: The process of incardination provides a path for existing clergy of any level to request permission to be accepted within the United Episcopal Catholic Communion and affiliated churches.

The first step of the process is to make a request for incardination. This may be accomplished from the contact form on the website, or from the Incardination form listed as a Menu Item.

The candidate will then go through a series of interviews, questionaries and other discernment processes. A valid criminal background check is required, with no exceptions. If both parties determine that the incardination is agreeable, the process will proceed to the filing of proper paperwork (certificates, good standing documents, other). 

All candidates must agree to part ways with their previous organization in a licit and amicable manner.

All candidates will be on a mandatory probationary period of no less than six (6) months.

It is the full and unquestionable right of the Patriarch to make a determination of the licit and valid Apostolic Succession status of the candidate. If in the view of the Patriarch it serves the credibility of the United Episcopal Catholic Communion or it's affiliates to require consecration into our Apostolic Line, that process must be fulfilled.

Any Bishop incardinating with this organization will initially have no direct authority at the diocese level or within the consistory. The elevation of any Bishop to an authoritative level is at the discretion of the Patriarch. Any Bishop that incardinates and brings with them other clergy, they will operate as a semi-autonomous entity.

Church Affiliation: There is a process for accepting an entire independent church organization into the United Episcopal Catholic Communion. We do not support directly full or partial communion agreements with other organizations, with some exceptions. If you desire to merge an entire organization with us, contact us and we will begin discussions.