Welcome to Anglicanism.org a depository of papers and articles related to the generic theme of Anglicanism.

This website contains a free-to-use library for the study of Anglicanism. The site started life in 2009 as a specialist online vehicle for the publication of pre-doctoral papers but it has long since outgrown that rather narrow definition and (we like to think) become something much more accessible without surrendering academic integrity.

You are welcome to browse, to read and to download. Perhaps you may like to submit a paper, letter or comment as well? Additionally, we also have linked Facebook and Twitter pages, which we hope you will find both interesting and informative.

Editor: The Rev’d Dr. Nicholas Henderson
Email:  info@anglicanism.org

Latest Additions:

RELIGION & SECULARISM – a reflection

The Rt Rev'd Dr. Keerthisiri Fernando writes: There is an impression today that in Britain many sociologists studying religion are preoccupied with debates on secularisation, modernism and postmodernism theories, to prove or disprove the significance of religion in modern British society. This has been happening in the context of some conflict between religion and secularisation. For example, highlighting the tension between Islam and secularisation Casanova has said, “... it also constitutes a struggle between a secularism that is considered as “normal”, “progressive” and “enlightened” and the religious which is seen as “backward” and “reactionary” A typical example for this secularisation issue is the debate of Stark and Bruce in their detailed and eloquent articles “Secularization, R.I.P. -Rest in Peace” and “Christianity in Britain, R.I.P.”. But in their arguments both of them have dealt only marginally with the issue of immigrants’ religious faiths. ...

Editorial: Call a ceasefire!

The Editor, The Rev'd Dr. Nicholas Henderson writes: The long war in Ukraine has been put quietly to one side by the press, public media and politicians even though a relentless battle continues. That conflict precipitated by a much larger country invading a smaller has become a stalemate war of attrition and gone off the front pages. Ukraine has been eclipsed by the new conflict started by the horrendous and brutal attack by Hamas into Israel with the death of over 1400 innocent civilians, old and young and the taking of over 200 hostages. In turn it is hardly necessary to rehearse the consequent intense reprisals that have seen ceaseless bombing and military incursion into Gaza (often described as the largest open-air prison in the world) by Israel as it executes its intention to destroy Hamas. This brutal saga will likely continue until the various Western nations, principally the United States with, amongst others, the U.K. on its coat tails, decide it must stop ... if they are not too late by then. ...

Thinking Biblically About Climate Change

The Rev'd Prof David P. Gushee writes: I am a Christian ethicist, and a pastor, and wearing both hats I have been asked to address climate change. I understand that this church, and other churches in the region, have committed to the eco-church movement. A great commitment. Today let us think about how scripture can inform such a commitment in the current moment. These texts that I have selected for today and that are available to you are very useful to help frame Christian thinking about ecological matters, with interesting implications for the problem of climate change. But I suggest to you that even these best and most relevant resources in scripture reveal some challenges for dealing with what we are now facing. ...

REVIEW: Anthony Swindell, Going to Extremes in Biblical Rewritings: Radical Literary Retellings of Biblical Tropes

Jonathan Clatworthy writes in his review: This book illustrates the literary reception of the Bible. The ‘extremes’ are the freedom which many writers bring to rewriting biblical stories. Some rewritings are antagonistic to the biblical text, the ‘hypotext’. Some use it as a departure point for a quite different development. Some amplify the hypotext, some condense it. There are prequels and sequels. Some change the tone, making it tragic or comic. Some give greater emphasis to minor biblical characters, or introduce new characters. Sometimes the viewpoint of the narration changes. For example The Dream of the Rood moves the viewpoint of the Crucifixion from that of an onlooker to that of the cross. ...

The frog in the pan – reflections on the ‘culture of church’

Bishop Robert Paterson writes: “Increasingly, the culture of ‘church’, particularly in those churches that are old and hard of hearing, is alien to most people. Most people do not customarily gather on Sunday mornings to sing in chorus with others, handling books (let alone several of them), sitting on wooden benches in cool buildings, sometimes being ignored as if by a supermarket checkout-assistant chatting to a colleague or alternatively being pestered as if by an over-enthusiastic sales-assistant, not knowing whether to sit down or stand up, often being glared at, and so on. These cultural norms make for a difficult or even impossible transition for a disciple of Jesus from a fresh expression of Church to what has often in the past been thought of as normal, and must force the older tradition to examine how it expresses what happens when the impact of Jesus draws people together. A major difficulty is that people who have been immersed in a particular style of church worship for many years find it difficult to assess what is of the essence and what can, and sometimes must, be left behind. ... There is much more work to be done on helping older churches to see themselves as others see them. ...

In the 75th year anniversary of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights – a perspective on the emergence of BRICS in a changing world

Bishop Trevor Mwamba, President of the United National Independence Party (UNIP) Zambia writes: The German word, Zeitgeist, aptly describes the emergence of BRICS grouping of nations. Zeitgeist encapsulates the spirit or mood of a particular period of history rooted in the ideas and beliefs of the time. BRICS is an acronym for the grouping of the world's leading emerging economies, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The genesis of BRICS lies in the banking crisis of 2007-08 when the G20 asked countries such as China, India and Indonesia to provide liquidity to the Global North’s collapsing banking system. This Global North’s banking crisis created an opportunity to rethink the global financial system. For decades, the Global South has been concerned about the unfair trade practices of the North. These practices include the imposition of credit conditions that in many cases do little to ease the financial burden of so-called developing countries. Indeed, the conditions attached to loans secured from institutions in the Global North often leave the indebted country worse off than it was prior to execution of the loan agreement. Formalization of what the 1991 South Commission report dubbed “the locomotives of the South” created an opportunity to challenge Global North financial hegemony. After all, it was now clear that economic development in the Global South had not been helped by the Breton Woods institutions whose governance is tightly controlled by Europe and the United States. It is this reality that has made BRICS an attractive alternative in the eyes of many Southern nations. ...

Anglicanism traces its antecedents back to the independent Romano-British Church during the first few centuries of Christianity, the arrival of St Augustine of Canterbury at the behest of Pope Gregory the Great in the late sixth century, a replacement of indigenous Celtic/Irish traditions with Latin oversight in the seventh century and then onwards to the tumultuous sixteenth century the Reformation and the break with Rome. Subsequently modern Anglicanism has slowly emerged, at times almost accidentally, at first in the English speaking world and then as a worldwide denomination.

To describe Anglicanism in a paragraph scarcely does it justice but being in communion with the see of Canterbury has come to define a type of Christianity with a wide range of liturgical practice, a spectrum of theological interpretation and the inevitable tensions that exist in a body that spans countries and cultures. Not strictly speaking a Church, although the term ‘Anglican Church’ is frequently used, the Anglican Communion is now represented in some 144 countries.

The Compass Rose is the emblem of the Anglican Communion. It was originally designed by the late Canon Edward West of New York. The Greek inscription ‘The Truth Shall Make You Free’ (John 8:32) surrounds the cross. The compass points to Anglican/Episcopal Christianity throughout the world with the mitre on the top indicating the role of episcopacy and apostolic order that is characteristic of churches of the Communion.

The modern design is by Giles Bloomfield and the symbol was set in the nave of the mother church of the Anglican Communion, the Cathedral Church of Christ in Canterbury, founded 597 – (photograph above). It was dedicated by Archbishop Robert Runcie at the final Eucharist of the Lambeth Conference in 1988. A similar Compass Rose was dedicated in Washington National Cathedral in 1990 to encourage worldwide use. The official Anglican Communion flag with the emblem was designed by the Rev’d Bruce Nutter of Australia.

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