The Society of the Faith was founded in 1905 by the Revd Canon J A Douglas, sometime Vicar of St Luke’s Camberwell, and his brother, the Revd C E Douglas.
The Douglas brothers were firmly committed to a catholic understanding of the Church of England. They founded the Society to be ‘an Association of Christians in communion with the See of Canterbury for mutual assistance in the work of Christ’s Church and for the furtherance of such charitable undertakings as may from time to time be decided upon, more especially for the popularisation of Catholic faith.’
The brothers were also much concerned with ecumenical relations, fostering Anglican-Orthodox contacts and founding the Nikaean Club to assist the Archbishop of Canterbury with ecumenical networking.
The Society’s first work was the printing of Sunday School stamps, which proved immensely popular. This success inspired the foundation of Faith Press, which published several thousand books, both scholarly and popular, as well as church music. In 1916 the Society founded Faith Craft to produce high quality vestments and church furnishings. Their biggest single commission involved the refurbishment of St Mary-le-Bow in London after the Second World War, but their work can be found throughout England.
The Douglas brothers lived on into the 1950s, but times and tastes were starting to change. Faith Press and Faith Craft both ceased operating around 1970, but the Society still pursues its original objectives: promoting high standards in publishing, church furnishing and theological education. Recent co-publications with the Canterbury Press include Michael Yelton’s Anglican Papalism (2005), Paula Gooder’s The Meaning is in the Waiting (2008), John Gunstone’s Lift High the Cross: Anglo-Catholics and the Congress Movement (2010), and Margery Roberts’ Church Linen, Vestments and Textiles (2015). In 2013, in association with Church House Publishing, the Society brought out Robert Reiss’s book The Testing of Vocation: 100 years of ministry selection in the Church of England, and in 2015 Robert Gage’s All Manner of Workmanship: Papers from a Symposium on Faith Craft in association with Spire Books, Ltd. Most recently, in 2016, the Society published Michael Yelton’s Martin Travers: His Life and Work, also in association with Spire Books.
The Society has held the lease of Faith House, 7 Tufton Street, Westminster, since 1935. Faith House is home to the church furnishers Watts & Company, The National Churches Trust, and Sion College.
You can find out more by visiting the Society’s web site.