The Anglican Communion is an international association of independent churches consisting of the Church of England and national and regional Anglican churches in full communion with it.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has a place of honour among the bishops of the Anglican churches. He is recognised as primus inter pares, or first among equals. The archbishop does not exercise authority in the provinces outside England, but instead acts as a focus of unity.
With a membership of 85 million worldwide the Anglican Communion is the third largest Christian communion in the world, after the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church.