Anglo-whatism? The Catholic heritage in the Church of England

The Church of England has always had strong elements of “catholicism” within it, being essentially formed by an accident of history (when King Henry VIII decided he wanted a divorce) and not at the outset by any form of doctrinal differences. Over time, Protestant elements were introduced but the catholic heritage has always been present to varying degrees.

The term “Anglo-catholic” dates simply refers to Anglicans who affirm the catholic history and practice of the church. Many churches and spiritual traditions form the one Church of God. Together, we form members of the Body of Christ, with our Lord at its head, and together we proclaim that there is one Church, one faith and one Baptism.

There is tremendous strength and richness in the diversity of Christian worship. Essen-
tially, it means that everyone, whatever age, gender, ethnicity, personality profile, in-
tellect, ability, emotional state and stage of faith should be able to find a place where
their spiritual needs are met and their faith is nurtured.

As members of the Church of England (Anglicans), this is especially so. One the greatest
strengths of Anglicanism is the range of traditions on offer and that wherever you are in
the country, you can go to an Anglican church and experience common worship in a
tradition that you find yourself ‘at home’. What is sometimes hard to believe, is that
God makes himself at home within all the traditions!

Further information on this branch of Anglicanism can be found in this Anglo-Catholic Spirituality PDF  or at the Wikipedia article on Anglo-Catholicism.

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