The association Chiesa d'Inghilterra
The association Chiesa d’Inghilterra brings together all the churches who profess the Anglican Communion in Italy, being Catholic, Apostolic, and in particular those who belong to the Church of England.
Today, over 100,000 Anglicans are estimated to be living in Italy, some of whom regularly go to one of the twenty churches, chaplaincies or congregations based in Italy.
Anglicans have lived, worked and professed their faith in Italy since the beginning of the 17th century: the first Anglican community was founded in 1605 by the British Ambassador, Sir Henry Wooton, in the Republic of Venice.
The association Chiesa d’Inghilterra is a "religious not-for-profit organization" which attained legal status on the 17th of July 2014 by Presidential Decree, signed by the President of the Italian Republic and approved by the Italian Cabinet on the 10th of July 2014.
The purpose of the association is to follow the principles of the Church of England, through the promotion and the implementation of all appropriate activities and social care, in the full knowledge that spiritual work is intimately linked to social action.
H.M. Queen Elizabeth II is The Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend and Rt Hon. Justin Welby is the Primate of the Church of England, as also the Archbishop and Metropolitan of the Province of Canterbury and the Bishop of the Diocese. The Archbishop of Canterbury is the religious leader of the Church of England and of all the dioceses.
The Structure of the Church of England
The Church of England is divided into two Provinces, Canterbury and York, each with its own Archbishop, which in turn, are divided into dioceses. In addition to the two Archbishops of Canterbury and York, the Monarch of the United Kingdom appoints 24 other bishops who sit together in the House of Lords.
The Diocese in Europe is the 42nd diocese of the Church of England, formerly known as the Diocese of Gibraltar in Europe. The Diocese in Europe is geographically the largest diocese within the Church of England, including all territories in Europe (except the UK and Ireland) plus Iceland, Turkey, Morocco and the former Soviet territories.
The Head of the Diocese in Europe is the Diocesan Bishop, or the Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe, the Rt Rev Robert Innes.
The Diocese in Europe is divided into Archdeaconries, one of which is the Archdeaconry of Italy and Malta, which covers the territory of the Italian Republic and the Republic of Malta.
The Archdeacon of Italy and Malta is appointed by the Bishop of the Diocese in Europe for whom he carries delegated authority, and assumes the role of Chairman of the association Chiesa d’Inghilterra. The current Archdeacon of Italy and Malta is The Venerable Vickie Lela Sims.
The Archdeacon also deals with the relationships between the Church of England and the other churches and religious denominations in Italy. He has responsibility for the security, custody and management of all the Italian assets that belong to the Diocese in Europe.
All Chaplaincies and Congregations located in Italy belong to the Archdeaconry of Italy and Malta, and each site has its own minister being either a permanent chaplain-in-charge or a locum chaplain.