The Anglican Church in America (ACA) is a Continuing Anglican church body and the United States' branch of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC). The ACA is separate from the Episcopal Church and is not a member of the Anglican Communion. It comprises 5 dioceses and around 5,200 members.
The Anglican Church in America was created in 1991 following extensive negotiations between the Anglican Catholic Church (ACC) and the American Episcopal Church (AEC). The effort was aimed at overcoming disunity in the Continuing Anglican movement. This was only partially successful. Most ACC parishes declined to enter the new ACA, resulting in a continuing existence for the ACC, while the remainder of its parishes and some of its bishops joined the AEC in forming the new church. In 1995, some parishes which had formerly been part of the AEC, primarily in the eastern states and the Pacific Northwest, withdrew from the ACA and formed the Anglican Province of America under the leadership of Bishop Walter Grundorf.
The Traditional Anglican Communion had been seeking unity with the Roman Catholic Church while still retaining aspects of its Anglican heritage. In 2007, in Portsmouth, England, all TAC bishops present accepted the ministry of the Bishop of Rome and the Cathechism of the Catholic Church and requested a means of establishing full communion. The petition was signed on the altar. The Vatican has a record of making some accommodations for Anglicans. In 1980, the Pastoral Provision was issued which allowed the creation of the Anglican Use and the establishment of Anglican Use parishes within dioceses of the United States. These parishes were initially composed of former members of the Episcopal Church.
The Vatican answered the requests of various Anglican groups for full communion by issuing the apostolic constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus, thus opening the possibility of corporate reunion with Rome for some Anglicans. On March 3, 2010, in Orlando, Florida, the eight members of the House of Bishops of the ACA voted unanimously to accept the Pope's proposal by formally petitioning the Vatican for a personal ordinariate in the United States. The ACA petition to establish an ordinariate in the United States urged it be established "as soon as possible" and indicated that they were establishing an interim governing council.
In September 2010, however, the bishop of the ACA Diocese of the West, Daren K. Williams, announced that the bishops were divided on the matter and that parishes had left the church since the earlier news broke that union with the Roman Catholic Church was anticipated by the bishops. He also stated that talks between the ACA and the Anglican Province of America concerning a possible intercommunion agreement between the two were planned. That agreement was finalized in September, 2011. As of 2016, a reconciliation committee with bishops and priests from the ACA and the APA, under the leadership of Bishop George Langberg, are working on ways to unite the two churches.
On February 5, 2011, the chancellor of the Anglican Church in America issued a statement on behalf of the bishops of the ACA announcing that the church would remain a Continuing Anglican church. The statement also reported that one diocesan bishop who favored acceptance of the Pope's proposal had submitted his resignation and that approximately fifteen parishes were expected to leave the ACA with him.
The Right Reverend Brian R. Marsh is president of the ACA House of Bishops and the Right Reverend George Langberg is vice-president.