The Diocese of Maryland welcomes you…
We are a community of congregations and individuals in covenant with God and one another.
We commit ourselves to carry forward God's reconciling work through Jesus Christ as we build up the Body of Christ, strengthen one another for Christ's mission, and strive for justice and peace within the church and the world.
The Episcopal Church in Maryland is as old as the first English settlements on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay in the 1630s. Beginning in 1692 the British government formally established the Church of England by requiring all householders to pay an annual church tax for the support of church buildings and the clergy. This was ended in 1776, but beginning in 1781 concerned laymen and clergy formed “The Protestant Episcopal Church” and elected Thomas Claggett as the first bishop to be consecrated in America.
In 1868, the counties of Maryland's Eastern Shore became the Diocese of Easton. In 1895
the Diocese of Maryland was further divided; the District of Columbia and Montgomery, Prince George's, Charles and St. Mary's
counties became the Diocese of Washington.
Racism in the Anglican and Episcopal Church of Maryland
The Anglican Church in colonial Maryland and the Episcopal Church in the State have been deeply embedded in racism from the beginning, and have been in denial about the Church’s role in slavery and its racist aftermath—tolerating and then accepting it, depending on it and even blessing it.
With the end of the American Revolution came the end of ecclesiastical authority of the Church of England in the new country. Its former parishes in the newborn United States reorganized themselves as the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States, of which the Diocese of Maryland is a member.
We are also part of the worldwide Anglican Communion- the family of churches that trace their descent and Apostolic Succession from the Church of England. The Anglican Communion consists of 38 independent “provinces,” of which the Episcopal Church in the United States is but one.
Each province is led by a “Primate,” an office usually known as Archbishop. In the United States, however, the office is known as “Presiding Bishop,” and since November, 2006 has been held by The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori.
In addition to his responsibilities as diocesan bishop for the See of Canterbury and Primate of All England, The Archbishop of Canterbury is generally considered the honorary head of the Anglican Communion, or primus inter pares (first amongst equals).
The Most Reverend and Right Honourable Justin Welby is the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury. He was enthroned at Canterbury Cathedral on March 21, 2013.
Need more information?
The good people at the Society of Archbishop Justus maintain anglicansonline.org, the completely unofficial yet mind-bogglingly comprehensive clearinghouse of all things Anglican. Give them a try.