Photo Credit: Richard Washbrooke
Phase Three of the Lambeth Conference has been launched, with the aim of taking the Lambeth Calls into the life of the Anglican Communion. The Lambeth Calls are on themes in church and world affairs and were discussed by bishops that attended the conference in Canterbury in July and August 2022.
With the theme of “Add Your Voice to The Call”, Phase Three is open to all those that attended the conference in 2022, along with their wider church communities, so that the Lambeth Calls can be shared around the world.
Phase Three launched last week (24 and 25 May) with a webinar that looked at the Lambeth Call on discipleship. It was hosted by the Bishop of Panama, Julio Murray Thompson, of La Iglesia Anglicana de la Region Central de America (IARCA) and Bishop Jo Bailey Wells, Bishop of Episcopal Ministry in the Anglican Communion.
Other guests and contributors included Bishop Anthony Poggo, the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, the Revd Canon Stephanie Spellers from the US-based Episcopal Church, Bishop Moon Hing from the Church of the Province of South East Asia, Bishop Vicentia Kgabe from the Diocese of Lesotho in Southern Africa, Bishop Paul Swarup from the Diocese of Delhi in North India, and the Revd Canon Stephen Spencer from the Commission for Theological Education in the Anglican Communion (CTEAC).
Last week’s webinar was the first in a series of Phase Three discussions planned in the months ahead which will look at each of the Lambeth Call themes in turn. In-between each webinar, churches and communities will be encouraged to meet for their own group discussions. For each of the Call themes, the Lambeth Conference will be releasing a set of Bible Studies, the Lambeth Call paper and an information guide, signposting people to relevant resources and initiatives from Anglican Networks and Commissions around the Communion. The first of these resources to be shared are on the discipleship theme.
To mark the start of Phase Three, the full set of updated Lambeth Calls have also been published on the Lambeth Conference website. They incorporate feedback gathered from the bishops during the Lambeth Conference.
Bishop Jo Bailey Wells said: “as a Steering Group, we chose to release the updated set of Lambeth Calls at Pentecost. At Pentecost, we celebrate the gift of God’s Spirit and the birth of the Church. Disciples of many voices, nations and cultures came together and through the Spirit found themselves united and empowered to live and share the gospel far and wide. It’s our prayer that the Lambeth Calls will strengthen and encourage Anglicans around the globe in their witness to Jesus Christ, living into the reality of ‘God’s Church for God’s World’”.
Speaking about Phase Three, Bishop Julio Murray Thompson, Chair of the Phase Three Group, said: “we have some important work to carry forwards into the life of the Anglican Communion. The Lambeth Calls address important matters in church and world affairs. The Lambeth Conference also discussed some important initiatives like the Communion Forest, the Anglican Communion Science Commission, and the work of the Safe Church Commission.
“The Lambeth Calls are not intended as resolutions or ‘orders’ to be imposed. They are being offered as calls or invitations, that can be explored together, in a way that strengthens our life as an Anglican Communion. Our prayer for Phase Three is that people will be inspired by the invitation to ‘Add Your Voice to the Call’, involving their churches and sharing stories, as we discern how God is calling us to walk, listen and witness together”.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said: “meeting with our sisters and brothers around the world for the Lambeth Conference in Canterbury last year was a wonderful celebration of our global Anglican family. We learnt from one another’s diverse contexts; and, in a spirit of humility and fellowship, we discussed our common opportunities and challenges.
“There were many positive outcomes and initiatives from the conference. Phase Three is all about building on our relationships and conversations, sharing the Lambeth Calls and inviting broad participation from Anglicans all around the world. I hope that many will join us for our Phase 3 journey”.
The full set of updated Lambeth Calls can be downloaded here
The resources for the Lambeth Call on discipleship can be downloaded here