Difference Between Lutheran and Anglican

Lutheran vs Anglican

Lutheran is a separate denomination within the fold of Christianity and the followers of this Church are called Lutherans. This church is a result of the reformist movement in Western Christianity in the 16th century and Lutherans are also labeled as the oldest of the Protestants. There is also Anglican Church that can be traced back to the reforms carried out in the 16th century; later than the reforms introduced by Martin Luther. This article attempts to highlight the differences between Lutheran and Anglican.


The followers of Martin Luther, the German Monk who introduced reforms to the Roman Catholic Church in 1521, in the form of The 95 Theses, are called Lutherans. Lutheran is a denomination in Christianity that has a separate Church called Lutheran church, and the faith of the members is Lutheranism. Martin Luther felt that many of the practices inside the Church during his time were inconsistent with the scriptures, particularly the Holy Bible. Nothing exemplified this more than the practice of indulgence in the church. Luther wanted to reform the Church from within and did not desire a separation. However, his ideas were vehemently opposed and rejected by the clergy of the time and his followers later on had no option but to make a separate church for themselves. Today, there are more than 66 million Lutherans worldwide, and they form the most important of the denominations among the Protestants.


Anglican is said to be a Christian who is a member of the Anglican Church or rather the Anglican Communion. Anglican comes from Anglo-Saxon that commonly means English. Thus, the Church of England can be literally taken as Anglican Church and the fact is that Anglican Church can be traced back to England. Today Anglican Church comprises many different churches, and it is reformed Catholic Church rather than a protestant Church. The three major characteristics of Anglican Church that make it distinct from other Churches are as follows.

• Primacy of Bible for decisions on doctrines

• Belief in Christian hierarchy

• Belief in reasoning and flexibility in thinking

These three features are what make Anglicanism a stool with three legs where scriptures, traditions, and reason make up the legs of this stool.

Lutheran vs Anglican

• Lutherans are the oldest reformists and considered the first of Protestants, whereas Anglicans are not Protestants but reformed Catholics.

• Anglican Communion is a fellowship of Churches that trace their origin back to the Church of England.

• Anglicans have some beliefs that are influenced in part by Calvinistic theology. This is out rightly rejected by Lutherans.

• The spiritual leader of the Anglicans worldwide is the archbishop of Canterbury and not the Pope of the Vatican.

• Many of the beliefs and practices of Roman Catholicism can be seen in Anglican Church.

• Lutheran Church is credited to Martin Luther of Germany, whereas Anglican Church is credited to King Henry of England.

• Lutheran is older than Anglican.