The Athanasian Creed
My new book for Latimer Trust, out now, is on the Athanasian Creed. It is the first major study of the Creed in English since 1964.
At first sight the position of the Athanasian Creed in the Church of England remains unchanged. The statement in Article VIII that it ‘ought thoroughly to be received and believed’ is still the Church of England’s official position, and provision is still made in both the Book of Common Prayer and Common Worship for the Athanasian Creed to be used in Church of England services.
Nevertheless, during the course of the twentieth century the Athanasian Creed became the neglected creed. It gradually dropped out of regular use in the Church of England and ceased to be taught to the clergy in the course of their training. As a result, the Athanasian Creed is now relatively unknown, its theology is not well understood even by the clergy, and it is almost never used in services even in conservative churches.
My new book seeks to counter this neglect of the Athanasian Creed. It is in five chapters that:
Set out what kind of document the Creed is and when and why it was written;
Give a detailed commentary on the Creed, explaining clearly what it teaches and why what it teaches is true;
Explain why the Creed still matters, not only because of its importance in the history of Christian theology and liturgy, but primarily because of the significance of its teaching.
Explore how people in the Church of England today can be encouraged to make use of the Creed both in theological education and in the life of their parishes.