Anglican – Oriental Orthodox International Commission Agreed Statement on Christology

The Anglican-Oriental Orthodox International Commission has been working on an Agreed Statement on Christology for many years, and this has led to the publication of an initial statement in 2002 that was revised in 2014. This has now been signed by representatives of the churches concerned following meetings between theologians in Gladstone’s Library at Hawarden, North Wales.

The full text of the statement can be read here.

The Apostolic Episcopal Church takes a close ecumenical interest in such developments. While the AEC, as a Continuing Anglican denomination, is not a member of the Anglican Communion, it nevertheless shares with that communion a common Anglican identity, history, worship and traditions. Likewise, there has in the past been extensive contact between the AEC and several of the Oriental Orthodox churches.

The Statement affirms the understanding of both parties of the hypostatic union. Crucially, it explicitly rejects the heretical position of Monophysitism. In the past, the AEC and its constituent communions have likewise expressed their rejection of Monophysitism, and have ascribed that position to churches of the Oriental Orthodox family. The present Statement allows us to move forward by acknowledging that the Oriental Orthodox churches do not hold that erroneous understanding of Christology today, but instead agree with Anglicans in a Christological understanding that is common to all of Orthodoxy and to Catholicism.

There remain significant differences in faith between the Oriental Orthodox and Anglicans. The Oriental Orthodox hold the non-Chalcedonian position, whereby they do not accept the fourth to seventh Ecumenical Councils as de fide. By contrast, traditional Anglicans including the AEC hold that all seven Ecumenical Councils are de fide and must be accepted as an integral part of the Orthodox Faith.

The AEC continues to be open to dialogue and ecumenical co-operation with the Oriental Orthodox churches, and to pray for the continuing progress of the work of the Anglican-Oriental Orthodox International Commission.

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