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Dr Rowan Williams to address world gathering of Catholic bishops

By on Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Pope Benedict XVI is assisted by Mgr Leonardo Sapienza walking up the stairs of the Church of St Gregory with Dr Rowan Williams (CNS photo)

Pope Benedict XVI is assisted by Mgr Leonardo Sapienza walking up the stairs of the Church of St Gregory with Dr Rowan Williams (CNS photo)

Pope Benedict XVI has invited the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, to address the world Synod of Bishops on the new evangelisation in October.

The news emerged after the two leaders met and prayed together at the Church of St Gregory on the Caelian Hill in Rome, from which Pope Gregory the Great sent St Augustine of Canterbury and his fellow monks to evangelise England in 597.

Dr Williams told Vatican Radio: “I’m being invited to give some theological reflections on the nature of mission, the nature of evangelisation, and I’m extremely honoured to be invited to do this.

“I hope that it’s a sign that we can work together on evangelisation in Europe,” the archbishop said. “It’s disastrous if any one church tries to go it alone here and tries to assume that it and it alone has the key”, because reviving the Christian faith in Europe requires as many and “as deep resources as we can find”.

The evening service in Rome was part of celebrations marking the 1,000th anniversary of the founding of the Camaldolese branch of the Benedictine order. Camaldoli monks and nuns live and pray at the Church of St Gregory and have an active programme of ecumenical contacts.

  • Anonymous

    Oh God no.

  • John Byrne

    Well it’s certainly much better than getting into bed with the Mormons and the lunatic religious Right in the US.

  • Anonymous

    A little better perhaps.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OTCKAYXC6V65WVJUPZFYCCUEUU Lee

    convert Dr Williams, not appease him My Grace.

  • Jae

    Relax guys, specially the “traditionalists” here, it’s just an invitation to speak to foster goodwill, nothing more. When the Councils of Trent, Vatican I and II were convened the Church invited most if not all ministers from different faiths. Did it change or influence the Catholicity of the Councils?, NO! The Holy Spirit is always protecting and guiding  the Church INTO ALL Truth until the end.(Jn 16:13)

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OTCKAYXC6V65WVJUPZFYCCUEUU Lee

    And isn’t praying with a heretic a mortal sin ????

  • Charles Martel

    I can’t see any reason to invite the heretical Archlayman of Canterbury to give his ‘theological reflections’ to any group of Catholics, let alone the bishops of the world.
    This Archlayman says, “It’s disastrous if any one church tries to go it alone here and tries to assume that it and it alone has the key”, so I assume his reflections will be based on this formally condemned heresy.

  • Chris

    It is a fantastic idea, united we conquer, divided we fall. Chris

  • Anonymous

    ++Canterbury gave an address at Monte Cassino which (despite some characteristic fudging when he was giving his strictly *personal* opinions) was theologically *quite* brilliant.

    And I would trust Ratzinger/BXVI’s abilities to appreciate and welcome theological excellence more than I would nearly anyone else’s — he’s *that* good of a theologian himself !!!

  • Anonymous

    Im afraid it helped change everything, and has been a disaster in so many ways. The 1970 version of The Mass, is most Protestant in form and shape.

  • Graham

    Dear Lord – the next thing the Holy Father will be doing is elevating him to the rank of Cardinal!

  • Sweetjae

    Brother while I sympathized with your concerns I don’t agree with your assessment that the New Mass is Protestant in any form and shape. It can never happen as long as God is God. What we perceived as contradiction is just due to our mistaken interpretation of catholic tradition which only the interpretive authority for both the Bible and Tradition belongs to the rightful God ordained Authority, that is the Magisterium of the Church ( pope and bishops in communion with him), nobody else, not liberal nor traditionalist bishops or groups.

  • Sweetjae

    The ultimate purpose of the Church here is to convert the bishop of Canterbury…you got to make everyone welcome even heretics and pagans then plant some seeds and let the Holy Spirit do the conversion. Don’t shun them out or bash their heads with the books of Catechism or Tradition though we know we are the true Church of Christ, we shouldn’t fall into a very legalistic attitude or of triumphalism.

  • Anonymous

    If only the Bishops were as you say. The Holy Father has encouraged the use of The Mass of the Ages, but our Bishop refuses it in our Diocese.

  • Dcruz

    Thsi very Archbishop of Canterbury made a comments that a croos worn on a women neck is merely a show of jewellary rather than faith.The  Anglican Bishops of the House of Lords are going to be banned soon and will be replaced by Muslim Mullahs as Cleggs wants tgius to happen.A Main Saudi Cleric in Aaudia Arabia wants all christian churches to close down and want muslims to takeover Europe and the west.The west is asleep and all this is a near possibilty.Cardinal Turin said recently that a clash of civilisation has been avoided but thare is a lack of ignorance between Muslims and Christians.This Archbishop does not understand what the religious book of Islam says and sharia and hadis says and this has led to the lack of understanding  

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=697126564 Paul Halsall

    Archbishop Williams has an extraordinary intellect, and although I sometimes disagreed with him, I really respect him.

    It is very sad that he will be retiring so soon.  He should have held on until the Queen’s 70th anniversary.

  • johnnewbery485

    As the Archbishop has just announced his resignation, will this invitation still be on the table?

  • John Byrne

    I’m quite sure the Pope knew of this well in advance.

    Dr Williams’ address to the Bishops is in October, I think, and he says he will be leaving at the end of this year.

  • John Byrne

    Don’t be silly Graham.

  • lionheart

    Why? Why!? have friendly relationships with heretical Anglicans and stringent

    ones with those (SSPX)who live according to the
    traditional teachings of the Church?! This pope appears to be under the allusion that unity is possible with each and every religion/group.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Dawkins is invited to give a talk in the not too distant future!

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Dawkins is invited to give a talk in the not too distant future!

  • Lionheart

    “The ultimate purpose of the Church here is to convert the bishop of Canterbury” -That’s absolutely

    nonsense! The ulimate purpose of the event is to achieve more equality between different religions by embracing a relativist approach which propagates that
    no religion is wrong, they are relevant!

  • Jo

    He is not that smart.

  • Benedict Carter


    Just what are you on about?

  • Benedict Carter


    Any study of the Novus ordo shows it to be a deliberate copy of the Cranmerian meal service from which all Catholic doctrine was deliberately expunged. 

    The ignorance shown by posters here is mind-bending.

  • Benedict Carter

    Pope’s gone mad. 

  • Anonymous

    Get a grip – we are all Christians. And it is a difference of opinion, not heresy. 

  • Anonymous

    you don’t understand relativism – that’s certainly clear. 

  • Healey

    No.  It is not a difference of opinion.  Jesus established a church on Peter the rock and gave his own authority to that church and the Holy Spirit to lead it into the whole truth.  This church quickly became known as the Catholic church (See letters of St Clement) and contains the same beliefs, structures, and modes of worship as we do today.  Other Christians do not have the sacraments, are not in union with Peter (the pope) and do not believe as the early Christians of the church Jesus founded believed.  It is not just a difference of opinion.  Look up the definition of heresy in the catachism and see if the shoe fits.

  • gabriel’s angels

    excellent idea. Benedict16 is good ur Rowan Williams is clever too. We might like to learn a thing or too from him about tolerance, temperance and respect

  • Benedict Carter

    Two of those don’t appear in any list of the Cardinal Virtues. Try again.