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Catholic bishops welcome new Archbishop of Canterbury

By on Friday, 9 November 2012

The appointment of the Rt Rev Justin Welby was confirmed this morning (Photo: PA)

The appointment of the Rt Rev Justin Welby was confirmed this morning (Photo: PA)

Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster has welcomed the appointment of the Rt Rev Justin Welby, Bishop of Durham, as the next Archbishop of Canterbury.

Writing on behalf of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, he said: “I warmly welcome the news of the appointment of the current Bishop of Durham, the Right Reverend Justin Welby as the next Archbishop of Canterbury.

“I know that Bishop Welby will bring many personal gifts and experience to his new role. As the future Primate of the Church of England, I am sure that his ministry, like that of his predecessor Archbishop Rowan Williams, will provide an important Christian witness to this country over the coming years.

“In fidelity to our Lord Jesus Christ’s prayer that his followers may all be one, I hope that we will endeavour to strengthen the bonds of Christian friendship and mission already established between the Catholic Church and the Church of England. I look forward to working closely with Bishop Welby in the service of the common good and in the common witness we can give to all the people in our land.

“The archbishop-elect may be assured of the prayers and best wishes of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales and of the whole Catholic community in our country.”

Bishop Welby, 56, an Old Etonian who studied history and law at Trinity College, Cambridge, worked for 11 years in the oil industry.

He was a member of Holy Trinity Brompton, the home of the Alpha Course, when he decided to become an Anglican minister. He was ordained at the age of 36.

He has been Bishop of Durham for just over a year.

At the press conference this morning, he said he had “learned so much from the Catholic Church”, particularly on Catholic social teaching. He added that his spiritual director was a Catholic priest.

The archbishop-elect also joked that he had “a better barber and spen[t] more on razors than Rowan Williams”.

  • Rich

    Ed, all Catholics throughout the world have no choice other than to accept these words literally. This isn’t optional, there’s no room for more ‘sophisticated’ interpretation, negotiation, or watering down. That’s just the way it is.

    That concept is in itself massive but necessarily needs to be the basis and starting point for all ecumenical conversations. So lets not pretend that some Catholics don’t think this is important. In short they don’t have an option.

  • Sweetjae

    Nope, how about you?

  • Ed

    In reply to Rich’s comments that “all Catholics throughout the world have no choice other than to accept these words literally” and that “lets not pretend that some Catholics don’t think this is important”:

    I agree that Catholics must (or at least should)  accept the magisterium, but it is an observable phenomena (at least to the rest of us) that many don’t. In the US, somewhere between 75% and 90% of all sexually-active Catholic women use artificial birth control yet many (probably most, by crude estimation) do not confess such spiritual transgressions or elect to abstain from taking the eucharist while in such sinful condition because they disagree with the Church’s position on the issue of birth control. And, while most US Catholics oppose abortions, a sweeping majority of them polled do not want it outlawed under all conditions.

    So, a large proportion of US Catholics continue to believe the parts of the Church’s doctrine that make sense to them and tend to ignore or reject the more challenging to accept parts of the Church’s teaching.

    And, by the way, simply telling some protestants there’s no salvation except through the Catholic Church may scare a few of them into crossing the Tiber.  But most of the rest of the billion non-catholic Christians will require a little more persuasion and instruction and a lot less bluster from triumphalist Catholics to buy into that proposition.

  • Sweetjae

    Nope, this subject had already been discussed in length from the past threads. Another thing, Pope Benedict also say to which this “gentleman” seemed to dispute as proof that the Pontiff has fallen off, is that it might had been the secretary or assistant of St. John the Evangelist who “physically” wrote the Gospel of John, who happened to have a similar name, John which of course has nothing to do with the Divine inspiration, innerancy, canonicity and historical accuracy of the Scripture.

  • Sweetjae

    Look who’s talking.

  • Sweetjae

    Pictures can’t be denied, sad, though i give the benefit of the doubt that they still planted seeds to these pagans who do not yet know Christ.

  • Rich

    Ed, you make a good point, and you’ve hit the nail on the head in terms of the difference(s) between the Catholic church the Anglican Communion. Catholics simply don’t have the option to ignore or reject the more challenging parts of the Church’s teaching, the Catholic church doesn’t allow itself to be moulded to peoples consciences, that’s not part of the deal .. no matter how painful that may be.

    I don’t doubt your stats, but I’d suggest if the questionnaire started “In an ideal world …” the results would be different. The fact that we don’t live in an ideal world ideal world, is the challenge. And to be honest some people like that challenge, the challenge of trying to live out the teachings of the church in its fullness amidst the complexity of everyday life. And those people don’t always do it successfully, but that’s not to say they shouldn’t give it a blast … and then try it again when they get it wrong … knowing that they might well get it wrong!

    So I guess in summary – words literally – no option – messy world – might well get it wrong.

    (The last paragraph isn’t a reference to my post btw, I’m disowning that bit)  :)

  • Togold

    Well said Stephen. Where do these people come from? They must live on another planet

  • Benedict Carter

    WG said MARK, not John.

  • Sweetjae

    Where does it say that Scripture is the Divine Word of God? Do you get the drip, mate?

  • nytor

    We have as well, but I change the words, to pray for the King, Francis of Bavaria.  

  • nytor


  • Liv

    Quite right!

  • Charles Martel

     Hear hear!

  • Bendict

    If the Catholic Church says that Anglican Orders are invalid why do we get invloved with them, I expect that there will be Catholic Bishops at Canterbury for the installation and if the Anglicans have women
    bishops there will be Catholic representation at their installations
    A long time convert

  • F Sheen

    long time convert asks:  
    ” If the Catholic Church says that Anglican Orders are invalid why do we get invloved with them ?”even longer time Catechism of the Catholic Church says:
    “The Church knows that she is joined in many ways to the baptized who are honored by the name of Christian, but do not profess the Catholic faith in its entirety or have not preserved unity or communion under the successor of Peter.  Those who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in a a certain, although imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church.”

  • Liz Perrott

    If Anglican priest wanted to be catholic priests they wouldn’t have become Anglican priests in the first place. There were reasons , other than Henry 8th wanting a divorce why the Reformation happened!!!!!

  • Sweetjae

    Well because Christ welcomes sinners of all colors! Dont be too truimphalistic like tye SSPX.

  • Hendley

    …I’m not sure why Sweetjae, who affirms the “historical accuracy of the Scripture”, didn’t promptly answer the question as to “which of the three versions in the synoptic gospels of Christ’s final words on the cross do you accept as historically accurate ?”…perhaps he could explain…