The Congregational churches trace their roots to sixteenth-century England. Freethinking Christians motivated by the Reformation wanted change in their ways of worship. The Puritans wanted to "purify" the Church of England by demanding an educated clergy and the right to hire their own minister. They also believed that a church should be a simple gathering of Christians with Christ as the only head of their church created for the purpose of hearing God's Word and governed by a covenant written by its members.
Some of those church reformers stayed in England while others became Separatists and joined the Pilgrims on the Mayflower for their journey to New England in 1620. From those humble beginnings evangelism and mission movements caused the Congregational churches to spread from one end of the world to the other.
Since 1977 the ICF has hosted international conferences bringing together adults, youth, clergy and laity from our churches all over the world. The Congregational Way calls us to fellowship with each other. It is truly amazing what like-minded Christians can learn when we take the time to share our experiences and our faith journey. We hope you will spend some time getting to know us here on this website and, perhaps, even join us for our next Quadrennial Conference. No matter what, who or where you are, in the name of Jesus Christ you are most welcome here.
As the current Moderator of the International Congregational Fellowship, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you to the ICF website.
The Fellowship was established at Chislehurst, England, in 1975 when a group of Congregationalists from various countries came together for that purpose. The first Quadrennial Conference was held in London in 1977.
Since then, a conference has been convened regularly at various places around the world to enable those belonging to the Congregational tradition of the Christian faith to meet for fellowship, worship and the exchange of ideas.
The 2017 conference will be held at Stellenbosch, South Africa, and I extend to you a warm invitation to come and join us. Registration forms are now being distributed, and the initial ‘expression of interest’ form, which adds your e-mail address to our database, may be found here.
Please consider coming to South Africa. The dates are 6-11 July 2017, and the conference will be an all-age event. In addition to day excursions, there will be Bible study groups, lively worship, stories about developments from our various ‘regions’ (Africa, South America, North America, Northern Europe, Southern Europe and the Middle East, Australasia and Asia), and lots of fun as we enjoy our time together in true Christian fellowship!
As this is a newly established website, it is intended that it should grow as the weeks and months go by and as more information is added to it about the ICF and its 2017 conference. So please, come back and visit us again soon!
In the meantime, may the Lord bless you and keep you!
Revd Dr Geraint Tudur