At the Lambeth Conference in 2022, the Archbishop of Canterbury has decided that the bishops gathered should adopt a process called 'Lambeth Calls.'
“Lambeth Calls” is the name being given to describe declarations, affirmations and common calls to the church shared by bishops that are taking part in the Lambeth Conference in 2022.
The focus of the Lambeth Conference is exploring what it means to be ‘God’s Church for God’s World’ in the decade ahead.
Read more here and download the booklet:
The focus of the Lambeth Conference is exploring what it means to be ‘God’s Church for God’s World’ in the decade ahead. Bishops will discuss several themes through morning Bible Expositions on 1 Peter, and plenary sessions during the Lambeth Conference.
Lambeth Calls will be shared on these themes which will include:
• Mission and Evangelism
• Safe Church
• Environment and Sustainable Development
• Christian Unity
• Inter-faith Relations
• Anglican Identity
• Human Dignity
During the Lambeth Conference, there will be several Lambeth Call discussion sessions, where bishops will be able to share their thinking and experience.
Outcomes of the discussions will then be shared as a written ‘Lambeth Call’.
They will be a short paper, that includes:
•A declaration, summarising what the Christian Church has always taught about these matters.
•An affirmation, summarising what the bishops want to say on these matters in the present time.
•A series of ‘calls’ to future witness, sharing actions or challenges that the bishops want to give to each other, to fellow Christians and to the world.
Within each ‘Call’ there will be matters to discuss and decisions to be made. It may be that not all bishops will want to add their voices to every element of every call. As has always been the case at every Lambeth Conference bishops will confer together but they will not necessarily agree on everything.
Each ‘call’ is being drafted by a group made up of bishops, clergy and laity from around the communion led by a Primate or senior bishop. They will be discussed and shaped further during the Lambeth Conference.
The intention is to make public each of the ‘calls’ from the conference and to ensure that there is a process by which the outcomes included in each ‘Call’ can be received and implemented. Member churches will be invited to consider the calls in their own synods and other bodies. It is expected that several themes from the ‘calls’ will be on the agenda for the meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in 2023.
The reason the archbishop has made this change to move from resolution to call is that the word resolution implies legal decision which is binding and that goes beyond the powers of the Conference. A ‘call’ represents what the so-called ‘resolutions’ did up to the Conference of 1998. A call is a decision of the Conference which comes as an appeal to each church of the Communion to consider carefully, and hopefully to follow it and respond to it in its own situation.
The Lambeth Conference has published a short booklet about the history of the Lambeth Conference and how the new ‘Lambeth Calls’ process will be an integral part of bishops’ discussions in 2022.