The word “creed” comes from the Latin word credo, meaning “I believe.” The first Christians professed the simple creed, “Jesus is Lord.” With the death of witnesses to Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, many questions arose regarding God, Jesus, and the Christian life. These questions led to several centuries of intense debate, meetings of church councils, and the writing of many creeds, including the Nicene Creed and the Apostles’ Creed. (Despite its name, the Apostles’ Creed was actually a statement of faith developed over several centuries in Rome to teach new Christians the basic beliefs of the church. The text we use today can be traced back to the late 7th century.)
Official documents are those documents which were created by The Presbyterian Church in Canada and which are regularly used as references or for instruction.
Acts and Proceedings
The Acts and Proceedings of General Assembly is a book produced at the conclusion of each annual General Assembly which records the official acts of General Assembly.
Catechisms are summaries of doctrinal statements, usually in a question and answer format, and designed to be used as a teaching tool. Catechism For Today was produced by a committee of General Assembly using a question and answer format over 52 Sundays.
Subordinate Standards are those creeds and confessions which were created over the centuries and adopted by the church.
Confessing the Faith Today: The Nature and Function of Subordinate Standards is a study document for sessions and presbyteries on the nature and function of a subordinate standard in the life of the courts and congregations of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. It was produced by the Church Doctrine Committee, from Acts and Proceedings of General Assembly (2003), pp. 247–72.
The Presbyterian Church in Canada recognizes the following Confessions as standards parallel to ours:
Theological Statements and Social Positions
The Presbyterian Church in Canada has made theological and social statements. To read more about these statements, visit the Social Action Hub.