Theological Education - IATDC

Four Key Questions for Anglicans World-Wide

In what seems a rapidly fragmenting world, Christians need to think about what it is that binds them together. Is it something that could offer hope to a threatened world order? Could it provide an example of the way that some things can be shared even when the movement of history seems at present to be pulling communities and cultures apart?

Anglicans have often claimed they have discovered a middle way through theological and social conflicts, and to encapsulate in their comprehensiveness a distinct way of maintaining unity in diversity. There are many issues, in the churches and beyond them, that are testing those convictions at the moment.

Following the publication of The Virginia Report in 1997, the Inter-Anglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission has been charged to study "The nature, basis and sustaining of communion in the Church, with particular reference to the Anglican Communion". Four questions have been identified which appear to underlie this issue:

  • When we speak of the Anglican Communion, what do we mean by the word "communion"?
  • What is it that makes some disputes so crucial that failure to resolve them threatens a break in communion?
  • In what ways are Christian teachings about moral behaviour integral to the maintenance of communion?
  • In answering these questions we shall be asking how far does the Virginia Report meet the relevant situations that have arisen in the Anglican Communion since its publication?

Responses are being sought from Anglicans across the world

Consultation period has now closed