these are summarized from the Anglican Church of North America website. The full text is available here.
We believe that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no one comes to the Father but by Him.
We hold to the following seven elements as characteristic of the Anglican Way, and essential for membership.
- The canonical books of the Old and New Testaments are the inspired Word of God, containing all things necessary for salvation, and are the final authority and unchangeable standard for Christian faith and life.
- Baptism and the Supper of the Lord are Sacraments ordained by Christ Himself in the Gospel, and thus should be ministered with unfailing use of His words of institution and of the elements ordained by Him.
- The godly historic Episcopate is an inherent part of the apostolic faith and practice, and therefore is integral to the fullness and unity of the Body of Christ.
- The historic faith of the undivided church as declared in the three Catholic Creeds: the Apostles’, the Nicene, and the Athanasian.
- Concerning the seven Councils of the undivided Church, we affirm the teaching of the first four Councils and the Christological clarifications of the fifth, sixth and seventh Councils, in so far as they are agreeable to the Holy Scriptures.
- We receive The Book of Common Prayer as set forth by the Church of England in 1662, together with the Ordinal attached to the same, as a standard for Anglican doctrine and discipline, and, with the Books which preceded it, as the standard for the Anglican tradition of worship.
- We receive the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion of 1571, taken in their literal and grammatical sense, as expressing the Anglican response to certain doctrinal issues controverted at that time, and as expressing the fundamental principles of authentic Anglican belief.
In all these things, the Anglican Church in North America is determined by the help of God to hold and maintain as the Anglican Way has received them the doctrine, discipline and worship of Christ.
The Anglican Communion has no peculiar thought, practice, creed or confession of its own. It has only the Catholic Faith of the ancient Catholic Church, as preserved in the Catholic Creeds and maintained in the Catholic and Apostolic constitution of Christ’s Church from the beginning.” It may licitly teach as necessary for salvation nothing but what is read in the Holy Scriptures as God’s Word written or may be proved thereby. It therefore embraces and affirms such teachings of the ancient Fathers and Councils of the Church as are agreeable to the Scriptures, and thus to be counted apostolic. The Church has no authority to innovate: it is obliged continually, and particularly in times of renewal or reformation, to return to “the faith once delivered to the saints.” – Archbishop Geoffrey Fisher
To be an Anglican, then, is not to embrace a distinct version of Christianity, but a distinct way of being a “Mere Christian,” at the same time evangelical, apostolic, catholic, reformed, and Spirit-filled.
If you’re interested in What We Expect from parish members, click here.