The 39 Articles of Religion
The Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion were first Published in 1553, the 39 Articles of Religion represent a Reformed Catholic statement of Christian teaching. By Catholic we mean those teachings which have been held consistently by the Church from the time of the Apostles. By Reformed we mean the commitment of the each generation of the Church to re-form herself according the dictates of Scripture, Tradition and Reason. The Articles establish the Anglican consensus with all ages of the Church in the foundational commitments of Christianity and a refutation of certain errors held by both the Medieval Roman Church and Radical Protestants. Because of this historical context the Articles are not a complete systemization of all Christian teaching. While this has been considered a defect by many, it is cherished by the Anglican Communion because it seeks to establish the fundamentals of the Faith. The axiom attributed to St. Augustine, “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, in all things charity” aptly describes the intent of the English Bishops in the crafting of the 39 Articles. It sought to create unity around the most fundamental doctrines of the Catholic faith. The Articles were intended to unify the English speaking Church. Thus, the chief benefit of the 39 Articles is in their practical character.
The effort to unify the Church is a matter of practical godliness. This is a reflection of the Bible itself for the Bible is a book about life, not philosophy. God’s chief end in making Himself known was that mankind might have union and communion with Him.
It is our hope that you will read these Articles and grow in your knowledge, love and service of God and your fellow man.