St. Fisher & St. More

St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More are Catholic Saints for obvious reasons. My question is to our Anglican friends. The church of England celebrate them as reformation martyrs, eventhough they died because they refused the seperation with Rome? Thanks

Yes, I was also wondering about this. I don’t have the answer as I don’t know enough about Anglicanism although I am English. I wonder if it is because Anglicanism can encompass such a huge range of beliefs running the gamut from Evangelical Protestant to Anglo-Catholic. For that reason maybe many saints have been “soaked up” into the Anglican Church. I would be interested to know when, exactly, Saints Fisher and More were recognized as such by the Anglican church? Was it before or after Newman and the Oxford Movement for example?

Anglicanism can be very confusing for Catholics (or indeed for anyone). I recently visited the Anglican Shrine to our Lady of Walsingham in Little Walsingham, England. I was very surprised to find a chapel dedicated to The Cure d’ Ars the Catholic patron saint of parish priests. Likewise the nearby Parish church of St Mary (that was of course Catholic before the Reformation/Schism) also had a huge original painting of the Divine Mercy. I can’t understand with all this constant absorbing of so many Catholic saints and traditions why the most definite mark of a Catholic is ignored, the recognition of the Pope. It’s like giving the impression you are being obedient, but not really.

I do understand that the Anglican High Church tend to be more Catholic, but still both saints died because they refused to depart from Rome. Also, how can they be called reformation martyrs?

As for when they were recognized, it was in 1980 after the Catholic Church decleared them Saints in in 1935.

I, too, have a related question: I once attended a social gathering in a Lutheran church’s hall. Hanging in the corridor was that famous picture of St. Thomas More. As I recall, More was no friend of Lutherans at the time. So why his picture there?

There was a short thread on the subject, about 2+ years ago, here:

I’d change a word or two in my comment, probably.


The Church of St Mary Magdalene is a ‘Forward in Faith’ parish within the Church of England. Forward in Faith was formed in the early 1990’s and is a traditionalist or conservative catholic organisation within the CofE. Their initial main reason for being was the opposition of the ordination of women to the Priesthood. FinF parishes are overseen by ‘Flying Bishops’ rather than the regular Diocesan.

FinF parishes tend to be liturgically/doctrinaly advanced Anglo-Catholic in nature. Within the CofE, they are the most likely to go over to the Ordinariate. Some have, although several remain. As an Anglican, I wonder why some of these FinF parishes remain in the CofE - some don’t use the official Anglican formularies but use the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite or perhaps the English Missal or some other hybrid rite. This particular parish seems to have introduced the Diine Mercy Chaplet as a public devotion. I too am perplexed by such parishes. To me, they seem to be on the fence or in some kind of limbo - neither Anglican or Roman Catholic and unwilling to fully commit to one or the other.:shrug:

The inclusion of several Roman Canonised Reformation/post Reformation Saints into the Anglican Calendars is a fairly recent thing. GKC’s linked post explains why. Notice they are not actually referred to as ‘Saints’. Their inclusion is regarded as controversial by Evangelical/Low Church Anglicans who see the influence of Newman/Oxford Movement/Ritualism as an infection in the CofE.

(As an aside, GKC has muddled his Charles’ in his linked post - it was Charles I who was canonized by Convocation of the CofE according to pre 10th century custom).

Note my comment above, that I would change a word or two in my previous comment. My finger stuttered on the “I”, back then. Just noticed it.


Easily done. Just noticed that I can’t spell ‘divine’ - I think there’s a bit of fluff stuck under my v key.:o

Thank you Symphorian, that was a very interesting post. As some of the new Ordinariate Catholics are finding, most Catholics in England (I count myself in that group) know very little about Anglicanism and especially the groups/strands within modern Anglicanism. I hope our new brothers and sisters feel welcome but both Diocesian and Ordinariate Catholics are, I think realizing how much we need to listen and learn from each other. In God’s wisdom small groups coming in is perhaps making sure that lots of these conversations will happen and prepare ways of understanding each other better than if the numbers intially responding to the Pope’s invitation were larger.

I had a couple of fantastic conversations with Sisters Wendy Renate and Jane Louise at Walsingham. They were in the very first group of six people to step out a faith and join the English Ordinariate.

Keeps us humble.

My local parish, here in the US, is affiliated with FiF-UK.


Thank you for the info. I do understand a bit better why they are included, but still feel odd to me. No offense intended.

None taken. Anglicans often feel odd to me too.


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