The seven dioceses of the Scottish Episcopal Church (Scottish Gaelic: Eaglais Easbaigeach na h-Alba) make up the ecclesiastical province of the Anglican Communion in Scotland. The church has since the 18th century held an identity distinct from that of the (Presbyterian) Church of Scotland.
A continuation of the Church of Scotland as it was intended by James VI of Scotland and as it was for the approximately 30-year-period from the Restoration of Charles II to the re-establishment of Presbyterianism in Scotland following the Glorious Revolution, the Episcopal Church of Scotland is now a member of the Anglican Communion and recognises the position of the Archbishop of Canterbury as president of the Anglican Instruments of Communion but without jurisdiction in Scotland. This close but ambivalent relationship – consisting of a partial recognition of the authority of the Church of England but a concurrent claim of independence – results from the unique history of the Scottish Episcopal Church.
Scotland's third largest church, the Scottish Episcopal Church has more than 350 local congregations. According to the Mission Atlas Project, 85,000 affiliates identify with the Scottish Episcopal Church. In the 2011 Census a total of more than 100,000 residents of Scotland declared themselves to be either Episcopalians or members of another denomination of the Anglican Communion.
The Scottish Episcopal Church was previously called the Episcopal Church in Scotland, reflecting its role as the Scottish province of the Anglican Communion. Although not incorporated until 1712, the Scottish Episcopal Church traces its origins including but extending beyond the Reformation and sees itself in continuity with the church established by St. Ninian, St. Columba, St. Kentigern and other Celtic saints. The Church of Scotland claims the same continuity. The church is sometimes pejoratively referred to in Scotland as the "English Kirk", but this is only partly true and can cause offence. This is probably in part due to the fact that it is, nonetheless, a union of the non-juring Episcopalians with the "qualified congregations" who worshipped according to the liturgy of the Church of England.