Anglicans and Old Catholics - Who are they?

Old Catholics

They are a federation of several independent national Churches in Europe and North America united in the Union of Utrecht on the basis of the faith of the undivided Church of the first ten centuries. They are thus definitely Catholic in faith, order and worship but reject the Papal claims of infallibility and supremacy. Thanks to the Bonn Agreement, they are in full communion with the Churches of the Anglican Communion. They have participated in the World Council of Churches since its beginning and are in formal dialogue with both the Orthodox Churches and the Roman Catholic Church. Among them the Archbishop of Utrecht holds a primacy of honour not dissimilar to that accorded in the Anglican Communion to the Archbishop of Canterbury.


Anglicans are a world-wide group of autonomous, episcopally governed churches which are in communion with and accord a primacy of honour to the see of Canterbury. Anglicans affirm that scripture contains all things necessary for salvation; the creeds as the sufficient statement of Christian faith; the sacraments of baptism and holy communion; and the historic episcopate. They embrace a wide spectrum of theological views: evangelical, liberal, and catholic, reflecting the diverse influences which have formed them over the centuries. Anglicans seek to hold this diversity in unity despite the inevitable tensions inherent in such an undertaking.

The Willibrord Society

The Anglican and Old Catholic Society of St. Willibrord exists to foster closer relationships between Anglicans and Old Catholics. It encourages and supports contacts between theologians, clergy, lay people and young people of the two communions. In this way it tries to put into practice the implications of the Bonn Agreement.

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