THE CHICAGO-LAMBETH QUADRILATERAL - DR. GIL HAAS, ST. AUGUSTINE OF CANTERBURY EPISCOPAL CHURCH, OKLAHOMA CITY
The Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral was approved by the House of Bishops but not the House of Deputies at the 1886 Episcopal General Convention in Chicago. The document can be read on pages 876-7 of our Book of Common Prayer. It consisted of four points (hence the term quadrilateral): 1) The Old and New Testaments are the revealed word of God; 2) The Nicene creed is a sufficient statement of Christian Faith; 3) Baptism and Eucharist, “with unfailing use of Christ’s words of institution and the elements ordained by Him” are the two sacraments of the Church; and 4) the Historic Episcopate is the Church’s valid governing body. The document’s goal was to initiate the formation of a “Church of the Reconciliation” in America that would fulfill the desire, “That we all may be one”. These four points were considered a “sacred deposit” and “essential to the restoration of unity among the divided branches of Christendom” during discussions of Christian reunion. All other “preferences” were negotiable, and, if necessary for reunion, open to abandonment. The Quadrilateral was modified by the Anglican Communion’s representatives at the Lambeth Conference of 1888. Both Houses of the1895 Episcopal General Convention approved the Lambeth version.
~Dr. Gil Haas, St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church, Oklahoma City
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