The Advisory Council for Religious Communities [in the Church of England]

This Council is commonly known as ‘The Advisory Council’.

The Council was established in 1935 and became a committee of the House of Bishops in January 2018. In accordance with the Canon on Religious Communities which was enacted in November 2020, along with the Religious Communities Regulations, the Council is responsible for providing advice and guidance on any aspect of religious life, encouraging those who are discerning and developing a community life and maintaining the register of recognised and acknowledged communities.

The Handbook of the Religious Life, Sixth Edition 2021, is available for download below and includes a copy of the Canon and the Regulations.

A list of the current membership of the Council may be found on the Organizations webpage.


“Acknowledged Religious Communities”, A briefing paper for the Council, November 2012

Download “Acknowledged Religious Communities”

“Towards Acknowledgement”, Guidelines, expectations and advice for a community seeking Acknowledgement as a religious community in the Church of England is now part of the Handbook. Please see Chapter 13.

“The Call of the Spirit: Religious community and language”, A briefing paper on terminology for the Council, June 2019

Download “The Call of the Spirit”

“A Handbook of the Religious Life”, Sixth Edition, 2021

Download “A Handbook of the Religious Life”