Difference Between Anglican and Episcopal

Protestantism, a major branch of Christianity, found its origin in the Reformation period in the 16th century. It was a movement that was started to counter Catholic Church, to point out its error and to bring a change in the society.


Religion Quiz

Test your knowledge about topics related to religion

1 / 10

What is the main belief of Anglicanism, established by the Church of England?

2 / 10

What do hindus aim to achieve?

3 / 10

Who wrote the first five books of the Bible, also known as the Pentateuch?

4 / 10

What is the main belief of Methodism, founded by John Wesley?

5 / 10

What is the main belief of Taoism?

6 / 10

What are the Three Universal Truths in Buddhism?

7 / 10

During which of the following festivals do some Muslims visit the cemetery to remember those who have been separated from them by death?

8 / 10

What is 'karma'?

9 / 10

What is the main message of the book of Proverbs in the Old Testament?

10 / 10

Who is the main prophet of Baha'i faith?

Your score is


Key Takeaways

  1. Anglican and Episcopal are both part of the larger Christian denomination of Protestantism.
  2. Anglican refers to the Church of England and its global affiliates, while Episcopal refers to the American branch of the Anglican Communion.
  3. The main difference between the two is their governance structure, with the Anglican Church having a more decentralized structure and the Episcopal Church has a more centralized hierarchy.

Anglican vs Episcopal

The difference between Anglican Church and Episcopal Church is that the Communion of Anglican is the third largest communion of Christians in the world. While Episcopal is the sub-branch or member of the Anglican Church. Anglican Community or Church is believed to be founded in Lambeth Conference in 1867 in London. Whereas, Episcopal Church was founded after the American revolution when it got separated from the Church of England.

Anglican vs Episcopal

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!

Anglican Communion was founded in 1867 in London by Charles Longley, who was the Archbishop of Canterbury. Church of Anglican Community believes in one, holy, catholic and apostolic church.

Episcopal Church is the American counterpart of the Anglican Church. It also traces its origins from the Church of England in the colonies of America.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonAnglicanEpiscopal
OriginAnglican Church originated in 1867 in London. Episcopal Church originated in 1785 under the Church of England.
MembersIt has 110 million members all over the world.It has 2 to 3 lakh members worldwide.
TerritoriesIt has its territory majorly in the UK. But also in African countries as well as in Australia.It has its territory majorly in the USA. But also in Micronesia, Taiwan, Central and South America etc.
HeadArchbishop of Canterbury is the head of Anglicans. Bishop of America is the head of the Episcopal Church.
ParishesIt has 40 independent churches and lakhs of parishes.It has almost 6,897 parishes.

What is Anglican?

Anglicanism is the third largest community of Christian both in the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Church.

Anglican Church as such doesn’t have any legal rights, but it works under the compliance of the Archbishop of Canterbury in London.

The term ‘Anglican’ emerges in a phrase of Magna Carta in the year 1215. Anglican is used as an adjective to describe institutions, the people, and churches and the theological concepts and liturgical traditions developed by the Church of England.

Anglicanism has never been ruled by a theologian or a magisterium. It has always followed the Book of Common prayers for its beliefs and practices.

With the expansion of the British empire, Anglicanism also grew, and all the churches under colonial power came under its jurisdiction.


What is Episcopal? 

The United States of America is considered to be the origin of the Episcopal Church. It is a sub-branch of Anglicanism or Anglican Church. It can also be said as an American version of Anglicanism.

Followers of Episcopal are called Episcopalians. The Church of Episcopal used to be a part of the Church of England, but after American Revolution, it got separated.

Episcopal has played the role of leadership in American contexts such as in science, the arts, politics, business, and education. It was also active in the 19th and the 20th century in the Social Gospel Movement.


Main Differences Between Anglicans and Episcopal

  1. Archbishop of Canterbury is the head of Anglicans. The Bishop of America is the head of the Episcopal Church.
  2. Anglican Church has 40 independent churches and lakhs of parishes. Episcopal Church has almost 6,897 parishes.
Difference Between Anglican and Episcopal
  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=9Fyce9FgrPgC&oi=fnd&pg=PP2&dq=Anglicans+and+Episcopal&ots=2Hth4mjijL&sig=zOZjP8jfxuEdNsZyDMHsBwoUO5E
  2. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=_iK5VggudLkC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=Anglicans+and+Episcopal&ots=M8U3lPHZ8X&sig=ttkZa6yrci0eZ6ac6RPfdRsu6Wo
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *