The Moravian Church and the Presbyterian Church USA enter full communion agreement


Covenant Presbyterian Church, Madison WI

Full communion among Protestant denominations means that churches in full communion recognize in one another the essentials of the Christian faith. It may also involve free interchangeability of membership by individual members of each denomination and an interchangeability of the ordained ministry between the churches. The primary symbols of their full communion is recognition of the baptism of the other denomination and sharing the Eucharist.

The Northern & Southern Provinces of the Moravian Church in North America and the Presbyterian Church USA have agreed to enter full communion with one another. The two provinces of the Moravian Church, which have congregations in 13 US states and 2 Canadian provinces, are also in full communion with the Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The Presbyterian Church USA is also in full communion with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the United Church of Christ and the Reformed Church in America.

The two churches will be celebrating their full communion agreement with a national service of worship on 5 JUN 2016. The service will be held at the Covenant Presbyterian Church in Madison WI. National leaders from both denominations will participate in the service that will include sharing the eucharist.

The main image and information for this story are from the Moravian Church website.
The second image is from the Covenant Presbyterian Church Facebook page.

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  1. Rod gillis

    Americans who have served in Newfoundland and Labrador (and there have been a great many) may be interested in this development. Anglicans and Moravians have had cooperative relationships there.

  2. So where does this put Anglicans and Presbyterians? Bishops or presbyters as part of the esse of the church?

    • David Allen

      An interesting question Paul. A few years ago in England, the CoE, the Methodists and the Presbyterians had full communion talks and had reached an agreement. The Methodists and the Presbyterians had agreed to receive the historic episcopate as part of the process, similar to TEC and the ELCA. However, the English Synod nixed the deal.

      You might find this document interesting;

  3. Tom Rightmyer

    The Episcopal Church and the Moravian Church mutually recognized their episcopal ministries. The Moravians separated from the Roman Catholic church in the 1450’s; the Anglicans about a hundred years later, Reformed churches about the same time as the Anglicans.

  4. As Tom notes, the Episcopal Church and the Northern and Southern Moravians are in full communion and have full recognition of ministries. We have the same relationship with the ELCA, which has also reached a state of full communion with the PCUSA. We have had conversations with PCUSA, and have standards for Eucharistic sharing. Would we reach full communion with PCUSA? I don’t think it will happen in 2018. We might reach full communion with the United Methodists then, but probably not both. Beyond that, who knows?

  5. JC Fisher

    TBTG! Always a good thing when two churches find their Oneness in Christ…

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