When Churches in Communion Disagree

edited by Robert S. Heaney, Christopher Wells, and Pierre Whalon

“Sustained conversation in the Anglican Communion is a Christian obligation and an act of faithfulness to our Lord’s prayer in John 17. This remarkable collection of essays brings wisdom, insight, and careful analysis to the complexities of living with disagreement. An important book that has the potential to change the contours of the debate.”

-Ian S. Markham
Dean and President of Virginia Theological Seminary and President of General Theological Seminary

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About the Book

Anglicans share a commitment to decision-making by synod, and yet the churches of the Communion remain autonomous. In such a context, how can we lay claim to mutual responsibility and interdependence, both as an investment in life together and as a gift to the whole Church?


“Unity within the Anglican Communion has proven a daunting challenge, yet it remains not a secondary but an essential vocation. The writers of this volume understand both the difficulty and the call, and bring to their reflections a sober historical imagination, informed by theological care and daring. Avoiding platitudes and simplistic assertions, these essays invite deeper discernment and serious ecclesial patience that, in themselves, testify to the ingredients of true Christian unity. When Churches in Communion Disagree provides us with a faithful model of how our larger discussions regarding Anglican common life should proceed.”

—Ephraim Radner, Wycliffe College at the University of Toronto

Publication Details 

Living Church Books
(July 8, 2022)
194 pages
ISBN-13: ‎

About the Author

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The Rev. Robert S. Heaney, Ph.D., D.Phil., is Professor of Theology and Mission, Virginia Theological Seminary. He is author of Post-Colonial Theology: Finding God and Each Other Amidst the Hate (2019) and, with William L. Sachs, The Promise of Anglicanism (2019).

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Faculty Scholarship at VTS

Virginia Theological Seminary is the flagship seminary of the Episcopal Church. Founded in 1823, VTS faculty prepare leaders from around the world for both ordained and lay service in the Church. Our faculty are a diverse community of scholars who are committed to excellence in teaching and research. Through publications, public speaking, and travel, faculty engage with the wider Church and world, while shaping the next generation of leaders.

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