All Saints Cathedral is an Anglican Cathedral. Globally the Anglican Communion is a worldwide family of Christian Churches with some 70 million members in 164 countries. It was created during the reformation in England where it was called the Church of England; and as it spread to other countries, it came to be referred to as either the Anglican or the Episcopal Church. Anglicans around the planet share a common liturgical and theological tradition, catholic and reformed, which is expressed locally in a wide variety of languages and customs. Each national or regional church within the Communion is autonomous, but the Archbishop of Canterbury is regarded as its spiritual head and a chief sign of its unity.
Within the Anglican Communion is the Anglican Church of Canada. The first Anglicans in Canada were 16th century English explorers led by Martin Frobisher and his chaplain, the Rev. Robert Wolfall. The church did not become established here, however, until the consecration of Charles Inglis as bishop of Nova Scotia in 1787. He had responsibility for colonists and missionary work as far west as Niagara. The Canadian church developed and grew with the country, becoming administratively independent of the Church of England even as Canada became a self governing dominion within the Commonwealth. The head of the Anglican Church of Canada is the Primate – the presiding bishop of the national church. The current Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada is Archbishop Linda Nicholls.
The history and heritage of the Anglican Church in Canada is complex. We recognize our part in the destructive colonialist project in the formation of Canada, and especially in and through the residential school system. Recognizing the sin of our past, we are listening and learning how to live differently and to be faithful treaty partners in both word and action.
The official apology from the Anglican Church of Canada for our role in residential schools can be found here: The Anglican Church of Canada’s apology for residential schools – The Anglican Church of Canada
The apology offered for the spiritual harm inflicted through residential schools can be found here:“An Apology for Spiritual Harm” – The Anglican Church of Canada
Anglican Doctrine & Beliefs
The Anglican Church of Canada does not define its doctrine in a single confession. Our beliefs are articulated in our liturgies, as well as in these selected statements:
- Anglican tradition affirms three historic creeds: the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed.
- The Solemn Declaration (1893) united the Anglican Church of Canada as a national church and defined its relationship to the worldwide Anglican Communion.
- The Lambeth Quadrilateral (1888) defined the commonalities of churches in the Anglican Communion and has also served as a basis for ecumenical discussion.
- The 39 Articles of Religion were a foundational document for the Church of England during the Reformation. Current work at General Synod is shaped by the Five Marks of Mission, used widely throughout the Anglican Communion.
Locally, All Saints’ Cathedral is the cathedral church for the Diocese of Edmonton, one of 30 dioceses within the Anglican Church of Canada and established in 1913. The Diocese stretches roughly from Jasper to Vermillion and from Westlock in the north to Ponoka in the south. The current bishop is the Rt. Rev. Stephen London.