Until 1955, the Anglican Church of Canada was known as the "Church of England in the Dominion of Canada" or simply the "Church of England in Canada". In 1977, the church's General Synod adopted l'Église Episcopale du Canada as its French-language name. This name was replaced with the current one, l'Église anglicane du Canada, in 1989; however, the former name is still used in some places along with the new one.
A matter of some confusion for Anglicans elsewhere in the world is that while the Anglican Church of Canada is a province of the Anglican Communion, the Ecclesiastical Province of Canada is merely one of four such ecclesiastical provinces of the Anglican Church of Canada. This confusion is furthered by the fact that Canada has ten civil provinces, along with three territories.
In recent years, there have been attempts by splinter groups to incorporate under very similar names. Corporations Canada, the agency of the federal government which has jurisdiction over federally-incorporated companies, ruled on 12 September 2005 that a group of dissident Anglicans may not use the name "Anglican Communion in Canada", holding that in Canada, the term "Anglican Communion" is associated only with the Anglican Church of Canada, being the Canadian denomination which belongs to that international body.
The Anglican Church of Canada's Prayer Book commemorates John Cabot's landing in Newfoundland on 24 June 1497.
The first Church of England service was a celebration of Holy Communion at Frobisher Bay around 3 September 1578 by the chaplain on Martin Frobisher's voyage to the Arctic. The chaplain was "'Maister Wolfall (probably Robert Wolfall), minister and preacher', who had been charged by Queen Elizabeth 'to serve God twice a day'".