for God’s World
God’s Church for God’s World
The Most Revd Kay Goldsworthy AO, Archbishop of Perth
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
1 Peter 1:3-5
There are more than 85 million Anglicans in 165 countries which make up 41 autonomous Provinces and 5 extra-Provincial areas in the Communion, each in Communion with Canterbury, the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
This month bishops from around the world meet together for the Lambeth Conference, one of four Instruments of Communion, distinctive to Anglicanism.
Of the other three Instruments of Communion - the Anglican Consultative Council, the Primates’ Meeting, and the Archbishop of Canterbury - it is the office and person of the Archbishop who is the focus of unity, and the Archbishop calls this worldwide meeting of bishops together, usually every 10 years. Although every bishop in the Anglican Communion is invited some have declined to attend, including some Australian bishops. Archbishop Justin has already expressed his disappointment that some bishops have made the choice to absent themselves.
This will be the fifteenth Lambeth Conference. The first was called together in 1867 as the colonial church began to grow with the expansion of the British Empire. Seventy-six bishops attended that conference, each concerned for the fundamentals of Anglican doctrine, discipline, and mission.
In 2022, hundreds more bishops will converge on Canterbury, to pray together, to study the scriptures together, to listen to one another, and to share in the struggles and joys of how each local church lives out the theme of this Lambeth Conference: God’s Church for God’s World: Listening, Walking and Witnessing Together.
Before us are careful deliberations on: Mission and Evangelism; Reconciliation; Safe Church; Environment and Sustainable Development; Christian Unity; Inter-faith Relations; Anglican Identity; Human Dignity, Identity; and Discipleship. All these and more are of vital importance and interest to each and all of us.
Deliberation on the themes will result in a number of ‘calls’ - calling Anglicans everywhere, in cultures and contexts to future action, shared commitment, and a deeper unity in mission.
Please pray for the thousands who will be together at Lambeth, bishops and their spouses, that the God of surprises will richly bless this meeting, strengthen our faith, and confirm our unity in Jesus Christ our Lord, from whom flows grace, mercy and peace.
Please pray for me, as I pray for you.