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All ACNA West members are Dioceses of the Anglican Church in North America. Membership is determined by the Bishops of the constituent Dioceses. Dioceses wishing to join ACNA West should contact the ACNA West Common Canonical Exam Coordinator who will refer them to the ACNA West Bishops. 

Services Offered

The ACNA West Board of Examining Chaplains offers Canonical Exams for candidates for ordination to the Diaconate and the Presbyterate for its member Dioceses. Dioceses pay an annual fee based upon the ASA for the Diocese. 

Member Responsibilities

Bishops of member Dioceses appoint Chaplains to the Board of Examining Chaplains for both the Diaconal and Presbyteral exams in the eight Canonical Areas. 

Chaplains may serve as either Exam Developers or Exam Readers. 

Exam Developers work collaboratively with Chaplains from other Dioceses to develop standards in each Canonical Area for both Diaconal and Presbyteral candidates. They also work to develop study guides for the Canonical Exams as well as both Objective and Essay Exams. A gathering of Exam Developers is held periodically in person, as well as regular zoom meetings to review standards, study guides and exam questions. 

Exam Readers read Canonical Essay exams in their Canonical Area, typically one exam per month. They provide a written assessment of the strengths, weaknesses and suggestions for ministry development for candidates. 

Exam Overview

Canonical Exams cover the Canonical Areas specified by the Constitution and Canons of the Anglican Church in North America. 

Areas covered include: 

Holy Scripture



Church History & Anglican Church History

Ascetical Theology

Moral Theology and Ethics

Practical Theology 

Missionary Work of the Church

Exams include essay sections in each of the Canonical Areas specified above. Separate essay exams have been developed for Diaconal and Presbyteral candidates. 

Both Diaconal and Presbyteral candidates take the same 4 Objective Exams in the following areas: 

Holy Scripture (Old and New Testament)


Church History & Anglican Church History

Ecclesiology & Polity of the Anglican Church in North America

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