Council for Christian Unity

In the Church of England ecumenical work is organised by the Council for Christian Unity (CCU).

The Council of Christian Unity works to:

  • Continue, promote and enhance effective ecumenical working at all levels of the church.
  • Advise the Archbishops, the Archbishops' Council, the General Synod and the House of Bishops on issues and proposals relating to Christian unity, often with the Faith and Order Commission.
  • Be the main channel of communication with other Christian churches, the Ecumenical Organisations of which we are a member and (where ecumenical matters are concerned) the institutions and member Churches of the Anglican Communion, on behalf of the Archbishops' Council and the General Synod.
  • Service committees and commissions directly contributing to the above. 

The CCU was established as an advisory committee of the General Synod and the Archbishops' Council to foster ecumenical work in the Church nationally and in the dioceses.

The members of the Council are:

  • The Right Revd Dr Martin Warner, Bishop of Chichester
  • Dr Rachel Jepson – elected by General Synod
  • The Right Revd Christopher Foster, Bishop of Portsmouth
  • The Revd Dr Andrew Atherstone – elected by General Synod
  • The Revd Canon Cameron Butland – elected by General Synod
  • Dr Lindsay Dixon – elected by General Synod
  • Revd Professor Mark Chapman - appointed by the Appointments Committee
  • Canon Elizabeth Paver - appointed by the Appointments Committee
  • The Revd Dr Gavin Wakefield - appointed by the Appointments Committee
The Council has ecumenical observers from Churches Together in England, Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, the Methodist Church, the United Reformed Church, the Roman Catholic Church, and the Baptist Union.

Their work is supported by the staff team:

  • The Revd Prebendary Dr Isabelle Hamley, Secretary for Theology and Ecumenical Relations 
  • Ecumenical Relations Officer
  • The Revd Dr Matthias Grebe, Adviser for European Church Relations
  • The Revd Dr Callan Slipper, National Ecumenical Officer
  • Mr Callum Williams, Team Administrator

They form part of the Central Secretariat of the Archbishops' Council and report to the General Synod through the Archbishops' Council. And support the Archbishop of Canterbury's ecumenical ministry, in collaboration with staff at Lambeth Palace. For more information on their work over the last year please read The Church of England's Ecumenical Relations: Annual Report for 2020 released jointly by Lambeth Palace and Council for Christian Unity in January 2020.

The Council also works closely with the Bishop at Lambeth and with the Director of Ecumenical Relations in the Anglican Communion.


Leading bishop with authority for a province. There are two provinces and therefore two Archbishops in England – Canterbury and York.

House of Bishops

A body made up of all Diocesan bishops ( as well as The Bishop of Dover who performs many of the Archbishop of Canterbury's diocesan functions); the Bishop to the Forces; seven suffragan bishops elected from among the total number of suffragan bishops and 8 regional representatives elected by and from senior women clergy.

General Synod

The 'Parliament' of the Church of England. The General Synod usually meets twice a year to debate and discuss matters of interest and to consider and approve amendments to Church legislation.

Anglican Communion

Global family of Anglican Churches whose links include their relationship to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

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CCU Privacy Notice