What is an Anglican Church Like?

August 25, 2015 | by: Daniel Rice | 0 comments


The Anglican church is an ancient church with modern relevance and spiritual vibrancy.
I encourage you to acquire a copy of the 39 Articles of Religion (online) to see what Anglicans believe. If you can, use a modern version for easier reading. You will also find the 39 Articles of Religion in any Book of Common Prayer (BCP), in the back, with other supportive materials. In fact, everything Anglicans believe is contained in the BCP. The 39 Articles is a Reformation document and reflects the contemporary theological concerns of that age. Nevertheless, the information is relevant to our own time as well.

There are different kinds of Anglicans, of course, from those who like a more high church service (formal liturgy), to those who like a more low church approach (informal liturgy), and everything in between.

Anglicanism can be flexible in its practices, but it remains solid in its orthodoxy. One thing that must be remembered is that the roots of the Anglican Church go back to the beginning of the church age itself, and it has been influenced by the history of the Christian Church from the begining, by the Early Church Fathers and Celtic influences like St. Patrick and St. Augustine of Canterbury.

Nevertheless, the Anglican church is a Protestant church in its beliefs and practice, and differs from the Roman Catholic church on significant points about the Eucharist, Pergatory, adoration of the Virgin Mary verses veneration, the Papacy, what is required for Salvation (faith vs. works), and other vital subjects. The Anglican church has no Pope, nor does it want one, but we do have a real and historical structure to our leadership, retaining three offices of ministers, Bishops, Priests and Deacons. We also support varioius roles for Lay leadership and special callings to monastic orders.

The 39 Articles describe Anglican beliefs fairly well, but you will actually need to visit an Anglican church to see how all that works out in real life, and in each congregation. The Anglican Church in North America today expresses three stream of Christian focus, 1) the Sacramental (primarily baptism and Eucharist), 2) Evangelical (we possess a high view of the Bible), 3) Charismatic (this includes belief in the ongoing ministry of the Holy Spirit and the practice of spiritual gifts). Emmanuel Church in Seattle also emphasizes CONTENT, COMPASSION, and COMMUNITY.

Things that guide all faithful Anglican's faith are the Holy Scriptures - O.T & N.T., Church History (The best of Christian traditions and values), Reason (Common sense and intelligence), and Experience (Not merely personal existential experiences but those which most consistently line up with the Christian Church around the world and throughout time; those that have been recognized and affirmed as being faithful to the Holy Scriptures and given from the Holy Spirit). We believe that these criteria help us keep Jesus Christ first in our hearts and Lord of our lives. Worship of Jesus Christ is central to our faith, worship and lives. He is unique and supreme. Jesus is Lord. 

You are always welcome at Emmanuel Anglican Church.

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