Christopher Wells, Editor of The Living Church

Christopher Wells was Holy Communion's guest speaker for the All Saints' rector's forum, November 1, 2015.

His biography, from The Living Church website:

Christopher Wells (B.A. St. Olaf; M.A.R. Yale; Ph.D. Notre Dame) arrived as executive director of the Living Church Foundation in September 2009. Wells grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in the environs of Calvin College, supplemented by frequent side trips to the United Kingdom, which fed Anglophilia in the family and an ecumenical disposition. At the University of Notre Dame, he pursued doctoral studies in historical theology and served as a lay leader in the Diocese of Northern Indiana, both of which conspired to lead him to TLC. When he is not editing The Living Church, Wells enjoys writing a regular column; overseeing the staff, budget, fundraising, and marketing of TLC; and articulating the evolving mission and program of the foundation in collaboration with elected leadership.

His work frequently takes him on the road, which affords an interesting perspective on the wider Church, and permits various sorts of ecclesial and ecumenical service. In 2014 he completed a round as theological consultant to the Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue in the U.S. (ARC-USA), and he serves on the board of the American Friends of the Anglican Centre in Rome. Dr. Wells is a Fellow of the Episcopal Church Foundation, and Affiliate Professor of Historical Theology at Nashotah House Theological Seminary. His primary areas of research are the history of Christian doctrine, Thomas Aquinas, ecclesiology and ecumenism, sacramental/liturgical theology, and Anglicanism and Roman Catholicism. He has published articles on Aquinas and ecumenism in the Anglican Theological ReviewEcclesiologyThe Journal of Anglican Studies, and Pro Ecclesia.

Wells is unmarried and grateful for a wide network of friends who are “family,” alongside his natural father, mother, and brother (see Mark 3:34). He is a member of the Cathedral Church of All Saints, Milwaukee, and enjoys reading, running, gastronomy, Notre Dame football, and all the arts.

His topic:

This little-discussed article of the creed, the communion of saints holds an extraordinary promise as a profession of belief in the permanent community of God's friends. What does this mean? That the whole world of the Church is hidden here -- her past, the present, and the future, including every member, gathered together like children in gratitude for unmerited love. In this "communion," we see the beginning and end of all that we ever wanted. Because, you see, this communion is our home; though we have known it mainly by rumors, then glimpses and flashes of recognition, and as something treasured in our hearts and fed by trust and obedience, which produce joy. In this place of communion -- by comparison with which all other communities, associations, clubs, schools, nations, parties, philosophies and movements pale in comparison: in this place, we find, and shall find, on arriving, that our painful path was light and momentary but necessary, as one needs air and water. For the communion of the saints is also the salvation of the saints.


I Believe in the Communion of the Saints