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Lusitanian Catholic Apostolic Evangelical Church

Lusitanian Catholic Apostolic Evangelical Church
Primate The Most Rev. Justin Welby
Headquarters Lisbon, Portugal
Territory Portugal
Members 5,000
Website Official Web site

The Lusitanian Catholic Apostolic Evangelical Church (Portuguese: Igreja Lusitana Católica Apostólica Evangélica) in Portugal is a member church of the Anglican Communion.[1] Like all Anglican Communion churches, it recognises the spiritual leadership of the Archbishop of Canterbury. In addition, the church is an extra-provincial diocese under the metropolitical authority of the archbishop. The current bishop is the Right Rev. José Jorge de Pina Cabral.


The establishment of a constitutional monarchy in 1834 granted limited religious toleration to non-Roman Catholics, and consequently led to the opening of an Anglican chapel in Lisbon. A second chapel was opened in 1868. The Anglican mission coincided with the growing influence of the Old Catholic movement in Portugal. Congregations were created from Catholic priests and laypeople who refused to accept the dogmas of the infallibility and universal ordinary jurisdiction of the Pope, as defined by the First Vatican Council in 1870.

The Lusitanian Church was formed in 1880 as representatives of these congregations met at a synod presided over by H.C. Riley, bishop of the newly formed mission in Mexico. The synod resulted in a constitution and a decision to abide by the doctrinal and liturgical standards of the Anglican Communion. In 1884, a Portuguese Book of Common Prayer was created, incorporating elements of Anglican, Roman, and Mozarabic liturgies. From the beginning the church was assisted by a Council of Bishops presided over by Lord Plunket, at that time Church of Ireland Bishop of Meath, and years afterwards there were some American Episcopal Bishops who provided Episcopal ministrations and pastoral care, particularly Bishops in Charge of the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe, until the consecration of the first Lusitanian Bishop in 1958.

Under the terms of the Bonn Agreement, the Lusitanian Church established full communion with various branches of the Anglican and Old Catholic Communions. Full integration into the Anglican Communion occurred in 1980 when the Church became an extraprovincial diocese under the metropolitical authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury.


The church counts around 5,000 members.[2]


As an Episcopal denomination, the church is governed by a bishop (Greek, επίσκοπος episcopos). The Lusitanian Church is a diocese with 2 archdeaconries, for the North and South of Portugal, and 14 parishes. It also has missions. The bishop has his episcopal see at Lisbon, where his throne is located in St Paul's Cathedral. The administration of the diocese is centred at Oporto.

Worship and liturgy

The Lusitanian Church embraces three orders of ministry: deacon, priest, and bishop. Increasingly, an emphasis is being placed on these orders working collaboratively within the wider ministry of the whole people of God. A Portuguese language Prayer Book is the basis of the Church's liturgy.

Ecumenical relations

Like many other Anglican churches, the Lusitanian Church has entered into full communion with the Old Catholics.

See also


External links