Father Heidt on the One Holy Catholic Church
Anglicans are Catholics. Originally they were English Catholics, spiritual descendents of the Celtic Christians of the earliest centuries and of St. Augustine, sent to England by Pope Gregory the Great in the 6th century to be the first Archbishop of Canterbury. Chiefly through the spread of the British Empire, Anglicans are now found throughout the world and of every culture and civilization. Being the largest communion of Christians after Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox, there are now more Anglicans in Nigeria than anywhere else in the world.
Anglicans officially adhere to the same ancient apostolic and catholic faith as Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox: the same scriptures, the same creeds, sacraments, and ministry. But unlike official Roman Catholic teaching we believe in what the Eastern Orthodox call autocephalous churches, that is to say, churches that are free to run their own affairs within the context of catholic faith and order.
Anglicans believe that local and regional bishops and pastors can understand and respond to the spiritual needs of their people better than a centralized authority.On controversial issues Anglicans have always relied on tradition. They look to the thought of the undivided church in the first Christian millennium, believing that the Holy Spirit has faithfully guided the whole church into all truth, not just one particular national church or denomination.