Celebration of Full Communion between Church of England and Lutherans in Britain

St Mary at Hill Church

St Mary at Hill Church, London (Photo: Dirk Ingo Franke)

First posted 21 May 2015; updated 27 May 2015

The Bishop of London, Dr Richard Chartres KCVO, and the Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Great Britain, Dr Martin Lind, will share in a service of the Holy Eucharist to give thanks for, and celebrate, the full communion between the Church of England and the Lutheran Church in Great Britain (LCiGB). The relationship between the Churches is a consequence of the signing of the Porvoo Agreement by Bishop Lind on behalf of the LCiGB in September 2014 in York.

The service will be held on 14th June at St Mary at Hill, a Church of England parish in London, at which St Anne’s Lutheran Church, a congregation of the LCiGB, conducts regular worship. The rector of St Mary at Hill, the Revd Prebendary Rose Hudson-Wilkin, and the priest-in-charge of St Anne’s, the Revd Eliza Zikmane, will also be involved in leading the worship.

The Porvoo Communion, formally established in 1996, acknowledges and promotes visible communion among the signatory Churches. The Communion now includes the national Lutheran Churches of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden, the Latvian Evangelical Lutheran Church Abroad and the Lutheran Church in Great Britain. The Anglican Churches in the Communion are those in England, Ireland, Portugal, Scotland, Spain and Wales.

The Porvoo Communion agrees that any baptised member of a Porvoo Church is to be regarded as a member of any other Porvoo Church and should be welcomed to receive sacramental and other pastoral ministrations. Episcopally ordained clergy in any Porvoo Church are able to serve as bishops, priests or deacons in any other Porvoo Church, subject to the procedures of the receiving Church.

The Nordic and Baltic Lutheran Churches that have congregations in Britain are under the jurisdiction of their home Churches and bishops and function largely as chaplaincies of those overseas Churches, with a number of their priests having Permission to Officiate in dioceses of the Church of England.

The membership of the LCiGB in the Porvoo Communion is distinctive, as it is based in Britain, with its central office in London. In other parts of the world, such as the USA and Canada, Anglicans and Lutherans are also in full communion and have offices and bishops in the same geographical areas.

In the Porvoo context, however, the proximity of the LCiGB and the Church of England is a special case that might serve as a model for developing common mission and greater unity in new ways within the Porvoo family of Churches.

Although small in size, the LCiGB is culturally diverse, with congregations in various cities of England, providing ministry in Cantonese, English, Mandarin, Polish, Swahili and some of the Nordic languages.

Information about the Porvoo Communion is available at www.porvoocommunion.org. For further details about the service on 14th June, please contact Pastor Eliza Zikmane on eliza.zikmane@btinternet.com.