Breakaway Anglicans find their feet
Earlier in the autumn the Anglican Network in Europe consecrated three new bishops. This small group of about 35 churches, all Anglican but not part of the official Church of England, is busily growing and expanding, in part as it expects more conservative churches to defect from the C of E as the established church begins debating whether to permit gay marriage in church for the first time. While ANiE, as it is known, is small and far from a meaningful rival to the more than 12,700 parishes of the official Anglican denominations in Britain, its rise tells us something interesting about the state of play for conservative evangelicals. This week, I’m speaking to one of the new ANiE bishops and a well-connected evangelical church historian to try and understand what the network wants to be, and why it matters.