The Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church have in my view much to offer, and carry on the practice of the faith as it has beep practiced for centuries. Of course there have been splinter groups along the way, but by and large until the Reformation, to be a Christian was to be a part of one of these of the Great Tradition, or another similar to them.
The Protestant Reformation was the attempt to reform the church, namely the Roman Catholic Church. I’m not sure historically if Luther and others really thought the Church would be influenced by their sense of what needed to be done and their work, but I don’t think at least initially that Luther had any intention whatsoever of starting a new church. Those of the Radical Reformation did in that they didn’t want to reform the Roman church, but start all over again, or perhaps more accurately be formed as church according to the teaching of the New Testament, with traditions considered in light of that.
What is discouraging to me in our Protestant and evangelical circles is all the divisions and how there seems to be little consensus in regard to the many things which I think unnecessarily divide us such as mode of baptism, even whether baptism is administered to infants or only believers, whether or not a church holds to what is called “eternal security” or “perseverance of the saints,” etc., etc. On matters like that I’d like to say let freedom ring, while at the same time kind of wishing for the day again where we would submit to the tradition of the church, or what the church in the main has believed and practiced over the centuries beginning at least as early as the second century, not far from the time of the apostles.
What ends up being the crux of the matter in the entire consideration is authority: whether scripture gives the church authority to make the calls especially concerning the gospel (which is the point of it all and while including it, is much bigger than simply how one is saved) or whether the weight is placed on scripture, the church itself including everyone as part of the church making its appeal on the basis of that.
I find the Anglican Communion of churches, which I’ve appreciated for some time through my use (albeit limited) of the Book of Common Prayer to be a church which draws deeply from the Great Tradition within the Protestant framework or position. From what the New Testament tells us, what the church says matters, in fact the church has both authority and with that responsibility. But the authority that the church has is derived from the authority of scripture so that it is scripture to which we must appeal to in the end. That means we don’t simply dismiss what the church has said but that we continue and ideally so as church to weigh all of that in the light of scripture itself, God’s written word.
Above all I remain with all others who name the name of our Lord, hopefully a true follower of Jesus. But to put the right emphasis on church, I might say I want to remain above all, simply a Christian. So that it is secondary which communion I am a part of, that we are all of the one church: the one body and one Spirit, just as we were called to one hope when we were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all (Ephesians 4). We are together and one in and through our Lord and the good news/gospel in him. As we continue on in the faith once entrusted to us, God’s holy people (Jude).