By Mark Michael
The Rt. Rev. Enrique Treviño Cruz, Bishop of Cuernavaca, was installed on June 11 as primate of the Iglesia Anglicana de Mexico, the Anglican Church of Mexico, following his election to the post at a recent provincial synod. Treviño has served as acting primate of the Anglican Church of Mexico since the retirement of the former primate, the Most Rev. Francisco Moreno, in November 2020.
Treviño was elected as Bishop of Cuernavaca, a colonial-era metropolis south of Mexico City, in 2013. He is the longest serving bishop of the church, which has five dioceses and an estimated membership of 21,000.
The Anglican Church of Mexico traces its origins to the Church of Jesus, which was established by liberal Mexican Roman Catholic priests in the 1850’s, and achieved official recognition in Mexico in 1857, when constitutional reforms guaranteed freedom of religion. In the 1870’s, the church established a connection with the Episcopal Church, and the Rt. Rev. Henry Chauncey Riley, who had previously been working in the region as a missionary, was consecrated as the first Bishop of Mexico in 1879.
Originally, the Episcopal Church assumed responsibility for English-speaking congregations formed among American and British railroad and oil field workers, while the Church of Jesus served Spanish-speaking congregations. As with Anglican mission work in South America and the Philippines, the church focused mainly on reaching indigenous populations in rural areas, where the Roman Catholic Church had a light presence.
The two mission efforts gradually merged, and the consecration of the Rt. Rev. Efrain Salinas y Velasco in 1931 as the church’s first native Mexican bishop marked a significant move toward autonomy. The five Mexican dioceses formally separated from the Episcopal Church in 1995, becoming a province of the Anglican Communion.
The Anglican Church of Mexico, like most other small provinces in the Global South, has generally followed a centrist course in the Anglican realignment of recent decades. In 2010, it became the first province of the Anglican Communion to endorse the Anglican Covenant. Though same-sex marriage became legal in Mexico in 2010, the province does not endorse the practice, though the Rt. Rev. Julio César Martín-Trejo, the Canadian-educated Bishop of Southeast Mexico, is an advocate for changing this, and his diocesan synod passed a motion in February 2022 calling on the national synod to change the provincial marriage canons and liturgy to allow the practice.
The church has ordained women to the priesthood since 1994, and in November 2021, the Diocese of Mexico elected the province’s first female bishop, the Rt. Rev. Alba Sally Sue Hernández.