From the Board of World Mission of the Moravian Church in North America Please share this information broadly and with individuals in congregations The city of Fort McMurray in Northern Alberta evacuated up to 80,000 people yesterday afternoon and evening as a result of a wild fire that engulfed areas of the city. The situation is very much […]
During 2015 and 2016, The Moravian Magazine highlighted two key pieces of Moravian doctrine — The Covenant for Christian Living and The Ground of the Unity — based on the 2005 study guide, Jesus Still Lead On. Each issue provided shared several elements of each document, along with commentary and questions for further study.
Find a Moravian Congregation near you! The Moravian Church in America has congregations in California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Wisconsin and Alberta and Ontario, Canada. Address –Search By City–Advance, NCAlbertville, MNAllentown, PAAltura, MNAppleton, WIArarat, VABanning, CABethania, NCBethlehem, PABronx, NYBrooklyn, NYCalgary, ABCambridge, […]
The Moravian Church has stood for basic religious principles for more than 500 years. Through these years the church has often put into written form the precepts of its faith and practice in what is known as the Covenant for Christian Living. Moravians recognize the example of Christ’s life and proclaim that Jesus Christ is […]
Ministries A strong commitment to a biblical faith inherited from ancient Unitas Fratrum and a zeal for mission work that came with the eighteenth century renewal of the church remain as hallmarks of the Moravian Church today. Education has always played a vital part in Moravian church life. Moravian schools and some colleges are found […]
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About the Moravian Church The Moravian Church is one of the oldest Protestant denominations, dating back to 1457 in Europe and first coming to America in 1735. Moravians have a strong tradition of ecumenical work and are best known for their missionary work and rich musical heritage. The Moravian Church in North America is comprised […]
The Moravian Church is a worldwide denomination. Moravians led the Protestant World Mission movement in the early 1700’s, when they sent the first missionaries to the islands of the Caribbean. By the end of the 18th Century, there were Moravian mission stations scattered all around the world. Today, the worldwide Unity is divided into nineteen […]
… a church where people matter and where love and compassion flow freely from God through people.
The Moravian Church is a warm, friendly, accepting atmosphere in which to grow in your relationships with God and people.
We believe God created us for relationships – for solid, meaningful, loving relationships with God and people. This kind of relationship doesn’t just happen in a vacuum or in a harsh environment;
For the Moravians, music has always been considered as a necessity of life, not as a cultural veneer. Many Moravian clergy and lay people in the eighteenth century were trained in music by the same composers who influenced Mozart and Haydn; thus they came to the New World fully conversant with the taste and practice of European classicism.
Instruments came to America early with the Moravians; by 1742 Bethlehem had flutes, violins, violas da braccio, violas da gamba, and horns. These instruments were played not by “professionals” but by accomplished amateurs, who enjoyed orchestral and chamber music as well as accompanying vocal solos and anthems for worship.
The Moravian Church has historically been a church dedicated to bringing people to our Lord and to sharing Christ’s love and Word throughout the world, and the call to our church today is no different, even though how we do that may be very different. Through our mission the church participates in God’s action within the world.
The Board of World Mission (BWM) is the overseas mission sending and support agency of the Moravian Church in America. It continues the work begun in 1745 by the Society for Propagating the Gospel, North America’s oldest Protestant mission society. Founded in 1949, BWM acts on behalf of the Northern Province, Southern Province, and Alaskan Province of the Moravian Church and its affiliate Unity of the Brethren.
In addition to the many individual community outreach efforts of Moravian congregations across the U.S., the Moravian Church in North America sponsors two ministries to offer support to people in need, regardless of faith. The Northern Province supports Moravian Open Door in New York City, while the Southern Province supports Sunnyside Ministry in Winston-Salem, N.C.
The primary means by which humankind knows God’s love and favor is through God’s Word. Moravians believe that the Word of God addresses the church in the world through the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments.
It is essential that we never lose sight of the fact that our faith is not simply a list of statements about us or our Church. Our faith is relationship — relationship with Jesus Christ. This provides a basis for relationship with each other. This should always be the foundation of our understanding of Moravian identity. Once we understand this, then we can use the statements below as a way to describe this relationship.
The Moravian Covenant for Christian Living is an attempt to state in clear arrangement and contemporary form a document which has long served the Moravian Church. The Church today has need of a clear statement of its faith and life through which each member may become aware of the nature of his/her Christian commitment. Such a document can become an invaluable aid in the instruction of both new and present members and a meaningful guide in the expression of the Christian life. That such a revision of the Agreement should have been made is entirely in harmony with the spirit of the early Moravian Church which believed that all forms should be updated and made relevant to the present life of the Church.
The Unitas Fratrum and Its Congregations
The Unitas Fratrum was called into being by God as a Church which stresses fellowship. After its apparent destruction in the land of its origin, it was renewed in Herrnhut, Germany.
We recognize that it is the Lord’s will to confront and call to Himself each individual through His Spirit and that formal membership in a congregation is for no one a substitute for a personal encounter with the Savior, nor does it relieve any from making a personal decision to accept Him. We learn from the Scriptures however that it has pleased God to make the Church the place where God’s fellowship with humanity becomes a reality. A living Church is the clearest witness for its Lord to the world.
The Northern and Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church are a small but very important part of a larger whole – the Unitas Fratrum, a worldwide church whose roots trace back to the mid 1400s. One of the central underpinnings of this worldwide church is the Ground of the Unity, a doctrinal statement that was adopted by the Unity Synod of the Unitas Fratrum in 1995.
This document is a revision of a similar statement prepared and approved by the Unity Synod of 1957, which marked the 500th anniversary of the founding of the Unitas Fratrum, and reviewed by subsequent Unity Synods. The material contained in the 1957 statement and in this 1995 version of The Ground of the Unity is based on earlier statements about the beliefs and practices of the Moravian Church.
“Most of our learning today comes from books or such media as television. Most of us live in crowded cities. We ride on concrete streets and highways. We even worship at a fixed time on a fixed day. Because of this we have a special need to discover anew the wonder of God’s creation. We need time for reflection, for prayer, for worship. We need to open our lives to God’s call for commitment, for service. This we find in the environment of a church camp.”
— Bishop George G. Higgins, June 1962
Bishop Higgins’ words from 50 years ago still ring true today. The Moravian Church’s commitment to outdoor ministries offer an escape from the fast-paced world and unique opportunities for spiritual growth in both children and adults.
A strong commitment to a biblical faith inherited from ancient Unitas Fratrum and a zeal for mission work that came with the eighteenth century renewal of the church remain as hallmarks of the Moravian Church today.
Education has always played a vital part in Moravian church life. Moravian schools and some colleges are found in Germany, England and America as well as in mission fields. Strong Christian educational programs are an integral part of each congregation’s life. Camps, conferences and retreats are held in each area of the church for children, youth and adults.
Worship in the Moravian tradition has strong emphasis on a rich musical heritage. Chorales and hymns reflect the staunch faith of the Moravian Church and the creativity of the eighteenth century pietists. The Moravian Music Foundation has uncovered a treasury of early American Moravian music in the church archives and attics of Moravian churches. Trombone choirs or brass bands traditionally play for festivals of the church in many congregations.
For over five centuries the Moravian Church has proclaimed the gospel in all parts of the world. Its influence has far exceeded its numbers as it has cooperated with Christians on every continent and has been a visible part of the Body of Christ, the Church. Proud of its heritage and firm in its faith, the Moravian Church ministers to the needs of people wherever they are.
When church members think of what the church is, they tend to center on the local church. While this is certainly true for Moravians as well, they really have something unusual in their worldwide Unity. This is a closely-knit federation of more than 20 provinces on four continents. Every seven years a Unity synod is convened with three delegates from each of the established provinces and one delegate each from the so-called affiliated provinces: those not yet completely self-supporting.
The Moravian Church is one of the oldest Protestant denominations, dating back to 1457 in Europe and first coming to America in 1735. Moravians have a strong tradition of ecumenical work and are best known for their missionary work and rich musical heritage. The Moravian Church in North America is comprised of the Northern and Southern Provinces.