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Welby enthroned as Archbishop of Canterbury

Welby enthroned as Archbishop of Canterbury

In his first sermon as spiritual leader of the 77 million-strong Anglican global communion, the Most Rev. Justin Welby said he sees “every possible reason for optimism about the future of Christian faith in our world and in this country.” Welby was enthroned today as Archbishop of Canterbury. BBC News reports on today’s service, held at Canterbury Cathedral:

The Prince of Wales and Prime Minister David Cameron were among the 2,000 guests at Canterbury Cathedral.

Archbishop Welby told them: “The present challenges of environment and economy, of human development and global poverty, can only be faced with extraordinary Christ-liberated courage.”

He went on: “Courage is released in a society that is under the authority of God, so that we may become the fully human community of which we all dream.”

For the first time in history, a woman – the Venerable Sheila Watson, Archdeacon of Canterbury – carried out one of the two enthronements.

She firstly installed the archbishop on the diocesan throne in the cathedral, before he was then sworn in as the Archbishop of Canterbury by the Dean of Canterbury, the Very Rev Robert Willis, on the marble chair of St Augustine.

See full story and photo highlights here.


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Charles KS

Bishop Epting’s comments are disturbing. Archbishop Welby is first and foremost a Christian bishop, not a government minister in a pluralistic nation. Christian bishops preach Christ crucified and resurrected. I don’t see his comments as offensive to anyone of another religion…and I presume they didn’t either. Had he not preached the Gospel at his (explicitly Christian) installation ceremony as Archbishop of Canterbury, it would have certainly been hugely disappointing to his flock (members of the CofE and the entire Anglican Communion).

Charles Everson

William R. MacKaye

In response to Bishop Epting’s startlingly misplaced remarks, I’d say that from a Christian perspective Christ liberates all, whether or not those of other religions recognize and acknowledge it. And I’d go on to say that it’s never improper for Christians engaged in Christian worship to say so.

J Michael Povey

Thanks Chris Epting for your comments BUT (!) Justin Welby was being installed as a Christian Archbishop, in a Christian Cathedral as he begins his spiritual leadership of a world wide Christian Communion. His reference to “Christ-liberated courage” is by no means insensitive to the leaders of other good and great religions who were present. They are smart and would have understood the nature of the event! There will be other times and occasions when Justin can affirm the inter-faith nature of the modern United Kingdom.

Clint Davis

I think it’s interesting that the big public events of the Church of England, with the exception of a coronation, never seem to include the Eucharist.

Chris Epting

Must admit to being deeply disappointed at the inter-religious insensitivity in Justin’s inaugural sermon. Suggesting that huge challenges can only be faced with “Christ-liberated courage.” He was speaking to a pluralistic nation and world, not only to Anglicans in the pews of Canterbury Cathedral (and even there, there were Jews, Muslims and representatives of the great Eastern religions present). The new archbishop has a lot of growing to do in his new role.

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