The Church of England


                           
                          -
                                 



                          :
                           The Church of England



                                , 2002


                            The Church of England

                                  Content:
Introduction ..3
     I. History of the Church of England
        1) Status of Church in England up to 1530 ..4
        2) Reformation of Church 4
           Henry VII.4
           Edward VI6
           Mary I...6
           Elizabeth I7
           Charles II..8
           Victoria .8
II. The Church of England today..9
   1) The essence of being an Anglican..9
   2) Organisation of the Church of England .11

III. Church of England becomes an International Church...12
Conclusions.13
Bibliography.14



                                Introduction



Everything in this life has its own history, especially Religion, as  it  is
a great institution.  With  the  development  of  history  of  a  particular
country, there will always be development of Religion, since the  Church  is
an integral part of State System. Heathenism, Orthodoxy, Judaism etc..  They
have been living for centuries. And some of them  were  changed,  penetrated
each other or reformed dramatically.

England was not exception.
The English are not a deeply religious race.  Hundreds  of  years  ago  they
decided that Roman Catholicism with its teachings  about  original  sin  and
the unworthiness of the human race could not  really  have  been  meant  for
them. So they designed a Church of their own  the Church of England.
The English Reformation was a result of the chain of events that  eventually
altered England and Englishness forever. So much in  history  is  a  bastard
child  of  both  long-standing,  simmering  emotion  and  the  opportunistic
seizing of a moment. By its nature unexpected,  it  is  also  unpredictable,
and shaped as much by environment and chance  as  by  its  progenitors.  The
Reformation was no different. It was going on through the ages  and  reigns.



I. History of the Church of England


1. Status of Church in England up to 1530

Until 1054 there was only one Christian Church - the  Catholic  Church.  Its
leadership was centered in five great Patriarchates --  Jerusalem,  Antioch,
Alexandria and Constantinople in the East and Rome in the  West.  After  the
Roman Empire became Christian some bishops increasingly became  involved  in
political matters, and the bishops of Rome  in  particular  began  to  claim
power over the whole Church. This led to a tragic division  in  the  Church,
the "Great Schism" of 1054, when it split into the "Orthodox" East  and  the
"Roman Catholic" West.
Not directly involved in that split was the Church  in  England,  which  the
Bishops of Rome were determined to claim - especially  after  1061,  when  a
rival Papacy in Lombardy claimed allegiance from the See of  Canterbury.  In
1066, the Duke of Normandy (William "the Conqueror"), with the  support  and
formal blessing of Pope Alexander II, invaded  England.  After  seizing  the
English Crown, William replaced all but one  of  the  English  bishops  with
Norman bishops loyal to Rome. The CHURCH OF  ENGLAND  was  to  remain  under
Papal jurisdiction for nearly 500 years,  until  the  reign  of  King  Henry
VIII.


2. Reformation of Church

England in the sixteenth century was a land of contrasts.  Much  less  urban
than  either  Germany  or  the  Netherlands,  it  nevertheless  possessed  a
thriving international trade centre in London and in Oxford  and  Cambridge,
two universities of  outstanding  reputation.  The  universities,  in  fact,
would play a significant role in the early campaigns against  Luther.  Henry
VIII turned to their finest theologians for arguments allowing him to  enter
the lists against the growing threat of  Lutheran  heresy.  This  initiative
would earn him from a grateful Pope  the  coveted  title,  Defender  of  the
Faith.
The progress of the  Reformation  in  England  was  closely  bound  up  with
Henry's personal affairs. His increasing desperation to secure release  from
his marriage to Catherine of Aragon forced him to contemplate radical  steps
that went very much against the grain of  his  own  instinctive  theological
conservatism.
Henry VIII
It was the  only  Henrys  chance  to  go  outside  the  boundaries  of  the
orthodoxy.  Until  this  event,  Henry  had  never  questioned  the   Popes
authority or the validity of the Bible passage, it banned the marriage of  a
brother- and sister-in-law. It was as early as the end of  1529  that  Henry
first considered a complete dissociation from the Roman church.
Henry forced Wolsey to retire, as his entire foreign  policy  had  collapsed
and he was now of no  help  to  the  King.  In  July  of  1531,  Henry  sent
Catherine to Ampthill, never to see  her  again.  He  took  back  her  royal
jewels and gave them to Anne. When Parliament reconvened in  January,  1532,
Henry ordered that no further  funds  would  be  transferred  to  Rome,  but
hinted to the Pope that the money would be restored  if  the  annulment  was
passed.
Meanwhile, most of the bishops had been persuaded that they would  not  lose
any power or income if the English  Church  were  to  split  from  Rome.  In
March, the Convocation formally announced their readiness to separate:  May
it please your Highness  to  ordain  in  the  present  Parliament  that  the
obedience of your Highness and of the people be withdrawn from  the  See  of
Rome. On May 15, they printed a pledge to submit all its legislation  to  a
new committee, formed of  laymen  and  clergymen,  called  the  Reformation
Parliament and Convocation. This is where the Church of England was born.
On January 15, 1533, Henry and Anne, who  was  four  months  pregnant,  were
married. However, the King still did not have his first  marriage  annulled.
He submitted his request for  annulment  to  the  new  Convocation,  led  by
Thomas Cranmer. On May 23, Cranmer declared Henry and  Catherines  marriage
to be unlawful and void. Five days  later,  he  pronounced  Henry  and  Anne
legally wed. On May 31, 1533,  Anne  was  coronated  as  Queen  of  England.
Although the King and new Queen rejoiced, the silence from the crowd at  the
coronation spoke for much of England. Pope Clement excommunicated the  King,
stating that the new marriage was null,  and  that  any  children  would  be
illegitimate. On September 7 Elizabeth was born.
Henry swiftly  transformed  the  English  Church  by  passing  various  Acts
through Parliament. In March of 1534, The Act  of  Succession  declared  the
marriage to Catherine invalid, and therefore  Mary  illegitimate.  Elizabeth
was  named  heir  to  the  throne  unless  Anne  produced   a   son.   Royal
commissioners  rode  through  the  countryside,  stopping  at  every  house,
castle, monastery, and convent to exact oaths of loyalty to  the  King  from
every man and woman. Only a few refused; those that did  were  sent  to  the
Tower of London to be put to death.
On November 11, 1534, the Statute of Supremacy  was  passed  by  Parliament.
This Act announced that  the king,  our  sovereign  lord,  his  heirs  and
successors, kings of this realm, shall be taken, accepted, and  reputed  the
only supreme head in earth  of  the  Church  of  England,  called  Anglicans
Ecclesia.  And  the  King  our  said  sovereign  lord,  his   heirs   and
successors, kings of this realm, shall have full power and authority to  do
everything most to the pleasure  of  Almighty  God.  It  was  done  to  
increase virtue in Christ's  religion,  and  for  the  conservation  of  the
peace, unity, and tranquility of this realm (pp. 97-98, Milton Viorst,  The
Great Documents of Western Civilization, NY, Barnes and Noble, 1965)
Innovative from the first, the new Church simplified  the  liturgy,  ensured
it was in English rather than Latin and set it out in a new Book  of  Common
Prayer which was designed to give the people  of  England  a  commonly  held
pattern of worship, a sense of  oneness  of  Church  and  people,  with  the
Church sanctifying every side of national life,  giving  society  a  Godward
purpose and direction. It introduced on Day of Pentecost. It is  written  in
English,  emphasizes  the  people's  participation  in  the  eucharist,  and
requires the Bible to be read from cover to cover. Fast  days  are  retained
(supposedly to help fishermen), but saints' days are not.
The political nation was, for the most  part,  obediently  compliant  rather
than enthusiastic. There is no evidence of any great hostility  towards  the
church and its institutions before the Reformation; on  the  contrary,  both
the English  episcopate  and  parish  clergy  seem  to  have  been,  by  the
standards of other European lands,  both  well-trained  and  living  without
scandal. Cardinal Wolsey, who fathered an illegitimate son,  was  very  much
the exception. On the other hand, few were prepared  to  defy  the  King  to
defend the threatened institutions of the old church.  Many  benefited  from
the windfall of church property that followed the confiscation  of  monastic
lands.
Edward VI
During Edward's reign (Henrys son),  the  Church  of  England  became  more
explicitly Protestant - Edward himself was fiercely so. The Book  of  Common
Prayer  was  introduced  in  1549,  aspects  of  Roman  Catholic   practices
(including statues and stained glass) were eradicated and  the  marriage  of
clergy allowed. The imposition of the  Prayer  Book  (which  replaced  Latin
services with English) led to rebellions in Cornwall and Devon.
Images" ordered removed from all churches by the council of  regents.  This
also means no vestments, ashes,  palms,  holy  water,  or  crucifixes.  This
causes so much resentment that an order suppressing all preaching follows.
Mary I
Edward VI dies. People are tired of Protestant  looting  of  churches.  Mary
Tudor ("Bloody  Mary"),  a  militant  Roman  Catholic,  becomes  queen,  she
returned the English church to communion  with  Rome.  She  was  Popular  at
first, but soon marries  the  hated  Philip  II  of  Spain.  Persecution  of
Protestants  begins;  Mary  appoints  new  bishops  and  fires  all  married
priests. During her reign, about 300 Protestants were  burned,  including  5
bishops, 100 priests, and 60 women. An  attempt  by  Cardinal  Pole  (Mary's
archbishop of Canterbury) to restore monasticism fizzles  when,  among  1500
surviving monks, nuns, and friars, fewer than 100 are willing to  return  to
celibacy.  All  this  ensures  Roman  Catholics  will  remain  unpopular  in
England.

Elizabeth I
Mary  dies.  Elizabeth  I,  (a  Protestant),  becomes  queen.  Despite  many
problems (including frequent assassination plots from Roman Catholics),  she
supports the enterprising  middle  class  and  England  prospers.  With  her
accession an independent church was restored  and  steered  along  a  middle
ground between Roman Catholicism and Calvinism.
Since 1564 the Era of Puritanism had began. The word "Puritan"  appears  for
the first time. It was biblically based on Calvinistic Protestantism -  with
emphasis upon the "purification" of church and society of  the  remnants  of
"corrupt" and "unscriptural" "papist" ritual and dogma. The  characteristics
of their movement were the following:  a disciplined, godly  life,  and  the
energetic evangelical activities. They want:
    . a skilled, educated preaching ministry, based on the Bible
    . as few ceremonies in church as Biblically possible (no surplice, no
      signing of the cross)
    . abolition of the traditional role of bishop, and replacement of the
      episcopate by a presbyterian system
    . one legal government church, controlled by Puritans.
By the 1660s Puritanism was firmly established amongst the  gentry  and  the
emerging middle classes of southern and  eastern  England,  and  during  the
Civil Wars the Puritan "Roundheads" fought for the parliamentary  cause  and
formed the backbone of Cromwell's forces  during  the  Commonwealth  period.
After 1646,  however,  the  Puritan  emphasis  upon  individualism  and  the
individual conscience  made  it  impossible  for  the  movement  to  form  a
national Presbyterian church, and by 1662, when the Anglican church was  re-
established,  Puritanism  had  become  a  loose  confederation  of   various
Dissenting sects. The  growing  pressure  for  religious  toleration  within
Britain itself was to a considerable degree a legacy of Puritanism, and  its
emphasis  on  self-discipline,  individualism,  responsibility,  work,   and
asceticism was also an important influence upon the values and attitudes  of
the emerging middle classes.
Thirty-Nine  Articles  (1571)  drafted  as  a  doctrinal  statement   by   a
convocation of the Church of England. The Thirty-nine Articles of  Religion,
along with the historic Creeds, are the doctrinal standard for  Anglicanism.
They are printed in the back of most editions of the Prayer  Book  and  tell
us not only about the main postulates (e.g. Of faith in  the  Holy  Trinity,
Of the Word, or Son of God, which was made very man; Of  Original  or  Birth
Sin; Of Free Will etc.), but also about Sin after Baptism,  Of  the  Church,
Of the Authority of the Church, Of the authority  of  General  Councils,  Of
speaking in the Congregation in such a tongue as  the  people  understandeth
etc.


Charles II

With accession of Charles II in 1660 the Restoration of the monarchy  began.
Everyone  is  tired  of  Puritan  rule.  Puritan  laws  and  censorship  are
repealed; the theaters  re-open.  The  "Declaration  of  Breda"  results  in
tolerance for Puritan views within the  Anglican  fold.  The  conflict  with
Puritanism leaves distrust  for  religious  individualism  and  emotionalism
("enthusiasm") among  Anglicans.  This  will  continue  through  the  "Great
Awakening" (1738-1784: Christian  revival  in  England  and  America).  This
coincides with the Enlightenment,  or  Age  of  Reason,  during  which  many
educated people cease to consider themselves Christians.
Act  of  Toleration  (1689),  partially  restores  civil  rights  to   Roman
Catholics and Dissenters. The events  since  the  Reformation  have  finally
convinced  most  Anglicans  of  the  virtues   of   tolerance   and   mutual
forbearance.
Victorian Era
The trend during this period will  be  rediscovery  of  liturgy  and  church
history - High church - and spreading Christianity  Low hurch.
The Evangelical branch of the Anglican Church  coincided  very  nearly  with
the "Low Church"  party.  Evangelical,  a  term  literally  meaning  "of  or
pertaining to the Gospel," designated the school of theology adhered  to  by
those Protestants who believed that the essence of the  Gospel  lay  in  the
doctrine of salvation by faith in the death  of  Christ,  which  atoned  for
man's sins.  Evangelicalism  stressed  the  reality  of  the  "inner  life,"
insisted on the total depravity of humanity and on  the  importance  of  the
individual's personal relationship with God and Savior. They put  particular
emphasis on faith, denying that either good works or the  sacraments  (which
they  perceived  as  being  merely  symbolic)  possessed   any   salvational
efficacy.  Evangelicals,  too,   denied   that   ordination   imparted   any
supernatural gifts, and upheld the sole authority of the  Bible  in  matters
of doctrine
High church was associated with the Tractarian  movement  began  about  1833
and ended in 1845 with John Henry Newman's conversion to Roman  Catholicism.
It was also called the Oxford Movement because Newman,  a  fellow  of  Oriel
College (part of Oxford University) and vicar of St. Mary's, the  University
church, and others were based there when  they  began  the  Tracts  for  the
Times in 1833. There  were  exactly  90  Tracts,  the  majority  written  by
Newman, arguing in general that the truth of the doctrines of the Church  of
England rested on the modern church's position as the direct  descendant  of
the church established by the Apostles. Pretty obviously, such  an  argument
was a conservative answer to the  various  contemporary  challenges  to  the
authority  of  religion  in  general,  Christianity   in   particular,   and
specifically  Anglicanism  Catholicism,  fueled  by  the   same   need   for
reassurance as was the Evangelical  revival.  Since  the  16th  century  the
Church of England had prided itself on being the via media, or middle  road,
between Roman Catholicism and a more radical Protestantism.
The Church of England has, in its several ways, been the  Church  to  uphold
the dignity of the individual. It gave the lead, for example,  not  only  in
the abolition of slavery but it played  a  critical  role  in  stopping  the
slave trade itself. Today, of course, it is a Church  at  the  forefront  of
the practical fight to right  injustices,  restore  the  dignity  of  people
everywhere and put the world  on  a  sustainable  economic  footing  without
ruining the planet upon which God put us.

II. The Church of England today

We are now in what many call the post-modern era and the Church  of  England
is experiencing a resurgence of interest in matters of faith as well  as  in
the Church itself. Calls to the ministry are up,  giving  for  the  Church's
work is up and the Church is confident that, with and  by  God's  grace,  it
can make an increasingly valuable contribution to the life  of  the  nation,
its people, and do so far beyond its borders as well.
Anglicans are numerous on every continent and constitute the principal
Christian community in many areas, notably in Africa.


The Book of Common Prayer exists in 170 languages. There are about 45
million Anglicans worldwide. There are three million Episcopalians in the
US.

At least one survey indicates that, among all denominations in this
country, we have the highest percentage of members who take time for daily
prayer.


There is little doubt that, among all groups of Christians, we Anglicans
are the most diverse and the most tolerant. Anglicans are still facing
persecution in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries, Communist China,
the Soviet bloc nations, Central Africa, and Central America.


Throughout the world, over one thousand new Christian churches open their
doors each Sunday. As always, Christianity flourishes wherever it shows
people its highest ideals.
1) The essence of being an Anglican

The Scriptures and the Gospels, the Apostolic Church and  the  early  Church
Fathers, are the foundation of Anglican faith and worship. The basic  tenets
of being an Anglican are:
* They view the Old and New Testaments 'as containing all  things  necessary
for salvation' and as being the rule and ultimate standard of faith.
* They understand the Apostles' creed  as  the  baptismal  symbol,  and  the
Nicene creed as the sufficient statement of the Christian faith.
* The two sacraments ordained by Christ himself - Baptism and the Supper  of
the Lord -  are  administered  with  unfailing  use  of  Christ's  words  of
institution, and the elements are ordained by him.
* The  historic  episcopate  is  locally  adapted  in  the  methods  of  its
administration to the varying needs of the nations  and  peoples  called  of
God into the unity of his Church.
Anglicans uphold the Catholic and Apostolic faith. Following  the  teachings
of Jesus Christ, the Churches are committed to the proclamation of the  good
news of the Gospel to the whole creation. In practice this is based  on  the
revelation contained in Holy Scripture  and  the  Catholic  creeds,  and  is
interpreted  in  light  of  Christian  tradition,  scholarship,  reason  and
experience.
By baptism in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, a person is  made
one with Christ and  received  into  the  fellowship  of  the  Church.  This
sacrament of initiation is open to children as well as to adults.
Central to worship for Anglicans is the celebration of the  Holy  Eucharist,
also called the Holy Communion, the Lord's  Supper  or  the  Mass.  In  this
offering of prayer and praise, the life, death  and  resurrection  of  Jesus
Christ  are  recalled  through  the  proclamation  of  the  word   and   the
celebration  of  the  sacrament.  Other  important  rites,  commonly  called
sacraments, include confirmation, holy orders, reconciliation, marriage  and
anointing of the sick.
Worship is at the very heart of Anglicanism. Its styles vary from simple  to
elaborate, or even a combination. The great uniting  text  is  The  Book  of
Common Prayer, in its various revisions throughout the Communion.  The  Book
of Common Prayer, alongside additional liturgies  gives  expression  to  the
comprehensiveness found within the Church whose principles reflect  that  of
the via media in relation to its  own  and  other  Christian  Churches.  The
Lambeth Conferences of the  1950s  and  1960s  called  for  more  up-to-date
national liturgies and this is going on today.  No  matter  how  distinctive
each is, they are all clearly of the lineage of The Book of Common Prayer.
Another distinguishing feature of the corporate  nature  of  Anglicanism  is
that it is an interdependent Church, where parishes, dioceses and  provinces
help each  other  to  achieve  by  mutual  support  in  terms  of  financial
assistance and the sharing of other resources.
To be an Anglican is to be on a journey of  faith  to  God  supported  by  a
fellowship of co-believers who are dedicated to finding Him  by  prayer  and
service.


2) Todays Organisation of the Church of England


The Church of England is organised into two provinces; each led by an
archbishop (Canterbury for the Southern Province and York for the
Northern). These two provinces cover every inch of English soil, the Isle
of Man, the Channel Islands, the Isles of Scilly and even a small part of
Wales.
Each province is built from dioceses.  There  are  43  in  England  and  the
Diocese in Europe has clergy  and  congregations  in  the  rest  of  Europe,
Morocco, Turkey and the Asian countries of the former Soviet Union.
Each diocese (except Europe) is divided into parishes.  The  parish  is  the
heart of the Church of England. Each parish is overseen by a  parish  priest
(usually called a vicar or rector). From ancient  times  through  to  today,
they, and their bishop, are responsible for the 'cure  of  souls'  in  their
parish. That includes everyone. And this explains why parish priests are  so
involved with the key issues and problems affecting the whole community.
Her Majesty the Queen is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England,  and
she also has a unique and special relationship with the Church of  Scotland,
which is a Free Church. In the Church of England she  appoints  archbishops,
bishops and deans of cathedrals on the advice of  the  Prime  Minister.  The
two archbishops and 24 senior bishops sit in the House of  Lords,  making  a
major contribution to Parliament's work.
The Church of England  is  episcopally  led  (there  are  108  bishops)  and
synodically governed. The General  Synod  is  elected  from  the  laity  and
clergy of each diocese and meets in London or York at least  twice  annually
to consider legislation for the good of the Church.
The Archbishops' Council was established in 1999  to  co-ordinate,  promote,
aid and further the mission of the Church of England. It is composed  of  19
members and 7 directors whose task is to give a clear sense of direction  to
the Church nationally and support the Church locally.
The Church of England issues its own newspaper: The  Church  Times,  founded
in 1863. It has become the world's leading  Anglican  weekly  newspaper.  It
has always been independent of the Church of England  hierarchy.  It  was  a
family concern until 1989, when ownership passed to Hymns Ancient &  Modern,
a Christian charitable trust. The Church Times was started to  campaign  for
Anglo-Catholic principles, which it did with vigour  and  rudeness.  But  in
the 1940s and '50s the paper began the  move  to  broaden  its  outlook  and
coverage. It now attempts to provide balanced and fair reporting  of  events
and opinions across the whole range of Anglican  affairs.  The  rudeness  we
now leave to our readers. For a longer history of the paper

III. Church of England becomes an International Church

Anglicans trace their Christian roots back to the early  Church,  and  their
specifically Anglican identity to  the  post-Reformation  expansion  of  the
Church of England and other Episcopal or Anglican  Churches.  Following  the
discovery of the "New World", Anglicanism  spread  to  the  Americas,  Asia,
Africa and Oceania (the central and south Pacific).  Some  37  national  and
regional Anglican Churches were established in various parts of  the  world,
which together became known as the Anglican Communion.
Historically, there were two main stages in the development  and  spread  of
the Communion. Beginning  with  the  seventeenth  century,  Anglicanism  was
established alongside colonisation in the United States, Australia,  Canada,
New Zealand and South Africa. The  second  state  began  in  the  eighteenth
century when missionaries worked to establish  Anglican  churches  in  Asia,
Africa and Latin America.
As a worldwide family of churches, the Anglican Communion has more  than  70
million adherents in 38 Provinces spreading across  161  countries.  Located
on every continent, Anglicans speak many languages and come  from  different
races and cultures. Although the churches  are  autonomous,  they  are  also
uniquely unified through their history, their theology,  their  worship  and
their relationship to the ancient See of Canterbury.
The  Anglican  Communion  has  no  constitution,  governing  body,   central
authority or common liturgy. It is merely a loose association of  autonomous
Churches with similar origins. Since 1970 it  has  been  disintegrating,  as
some member churches have brazenly tampered with essential elements  of  the
Faith and  con  no  longer  claim  to  have  the  same  Scriptures,  Creeds,
Sacraments and Ministry as the rest  of  the  Catholic  church.  Since  1987
those Churches have included the CHURCH OF ENGLAND herself.

                                 Conclusions


There have been Christians in Britain  since  AD200  and  probably  earlier.
Through war, peace, famine and prosperity, the Church was  critical  in  the
development of society, law, buildings and the quiet piety  of  the  people.
English civil power and the  Church  developed  in  an  increasingly  uneasy
parallel. Two points of contention were the Church's  wealth  and  its  ties
with Rome. These differences came to a head in the 1530s,  when  King  Henry
VIII wished to obtain a divorce from Queen Catherine of Aragon. And  Act  of
Supremacy was issued. This Act reaffirmed the Kings  sovereignty  over  the
English  Church  and  State  and  gave   Henry   power   over   all   moral,
organizational, heretical, and ecclesiastical reform which until this  point
had been left  to  the  Church.  The  new  church  was  christened  Ecclesia
Anglicana.
But  in  1550's,  however,  under  Edward  VI,  the  English  Church  became
Protestant in doctrine and ritual, and even then it remained traditional  in
organization. Under the Roman Catholic Mary I a politico-religious  reaction
resulted in the burning at the stake of some prominent Protestants  and  the
exile of many others,  which  led  in  turn  to  a  popular  association  of
Catholicism with  persecution  and  Spanish  domination.  When  Elizabeth  I
succeeded  to  the  throne  in  1558,  however,  she  restored  a   moderate
Protestantism, codifying the Anglican faith in the Act  of  Uniformity,  the
Act of Supremacy, and the Thirty-Nine Articles.
Under reign of Charles II. Puritan laws and  censorship  are  repealed;  the
theaters  re-open.  The  conflict  with  Puritanism  leaves   distrust   for
religious individualism and  emotionalism  ("enthusiasm")  among  Anglicans.
This will continue through the "Great Awakening". During  "Great  Awakening"
Christian revival took place in England and America.
The trend during Victorian Era rediscovered of liturgy  and  church  history
and spreading Christianity. In the mid-nineteenth century, then, the  Church
of  England  was   disorganized.   Though   its   adherents   were   largely
conservative, a considerable portion of its  leadership  was,  ideologically
speaking, perilously close to Catholicism, and the religious census of  1851
showed that it was reaching only about fourteen percent  of  the  population
of England.
When the British Empire expanded in the 17th, 18th and  19th  centuries,  so
too did the Church. And today  the  Anglican  Communion  has  more  than  70
million adherents  in  38  Provinces  spreading  across  161  countries.  Te
Churches are committed to the proclamation of the good news  of  the  Gospel
to the  whole  creation.  In  practice  this  is  based  on  the  revelation
contained in Holy Scripture and the Catholic creeds, and is  interpreted  in
light of  Christian  tradition,  scholarship,  reason  and  experience.  The
Anglican Church is open for people who are united in their creed  and  their
love of Christ Jesus, the Son of God and what He means for them and for  the
world around them.
                                Bibliography

   1. The Anglican Catholic Church, second edition, 1998, published  by  The
      Anglican Catholic Church

   2. Dickens, A.G. The English Reformation. Second Ed. University Park, PA:
      The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1989

   3. Rupp, Gordon. Religion in England 1688-1791. Oxford: Clarendon  Press,
      1986

   4. Morgan, Kenneth O., ed. The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain. New
      York: Oxford University Press, 1986.