Anglicans form the family of Christians closely related to the Archbishop of Canterbury. Whilst tracing their inheritance back to Christ and the earliest Christians and to the ancient Roman Catholic church, the sixteenth century Reformation was a crucial moment for Anglicanism.
‘Bishop’ comes from the Greek word for ‘overseer’. So a bishop is a senior Christian minister authorised to have oversight for God’s people. As well as duties given to deacons and priests, bishops confirm and ordain.
‘Diocese’ refers to the geographical territory in which a bishop exercises oversight. The Church in Wales is divided into six dioceses each with its own cathedral in which is housed the cathedra (the bishop’s ‘chair’ or ‘throne’).
‘Eucharist’ comes from the Greek word for ‘thanksgiving’. At the Eucharist the Church remembers Jesus’ last supper where he gave bread and wine to be his body and blood, a sign of his saving love. See also Holy Communion.
At Holy Communion blessed bread and wine is shared, by which we receive the body and blood of Jesus Christ. The congregation gives thanks for Jesus’ life, his death and resurrection and his continuing presence. See also Eucharist.
Prayer sustains our human relationship with God and may involve words (formal or informal) or be silent. Prayer can involve adoration (‘I love you’), confession (‘sorry’), thanksgiving and supplication (‘please’).
‘Priest’ comes from the Greek word for ‘elder’. Priests in the Church in Wales are those authorised specifically to proclaim forgiveness of sins, preside at the Eucharist and bless God’s people, as well as other responsibilities.