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Catechesis in the Church of England

by
25 January 2012

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From the Revd Dr John Hughes

Sir, — Mr and Mrs Culverwell make an excellent point (Letters, 23 December) concerning the 1962 Revised Catechism of the Church of England, which, despite being repeatedly commended by the Archbishops and the General Synod, and readily available from Church House Bookshop (for a mere £1.99), is almost unknown to most clergy.

I always give copies to those I prepare for baptism and confirma­tion, and have tried to make copies available at the back of churches with which I have been involved. When I contacted the webmaster for the Church of England web page to suggest that this, along with other classic Anglican statements of belief, might be included under the “Faith” section, which until the recent addition of a piece by the Archbishop of Canterbury was woefully thin, I received a dismissive response.

The Catechism is not without its limitations (the sections on God and redemption could certainly say more), but it also includes some pithy gems (on prayer, holy scripture, the Church of England, and the sacraments).

There is much talk at the moment about the renewal of Christian education in the parishes, and we could learn a lot from the Roman Catholic Church here, in terms of the little CTS publications and the excellent 1992 Catechism, but, meanwhile, against those who say that the Church of England has no recent statement of belief, we should celebrate this useful little book.

JOHN HUGHES
Jesus College
Cambridge CB5 8BL

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