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Archbishop of Canterbury to meet Pope Francis

By on Wednesday, 5 June 2013

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby will visit Rome later this month (Photo: PA)

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby will visit Rome later this month (Photo: PA)

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, will meet Pope Francis on Friday, June 14, the Vatican has confirmed.

The archbishop’s visit, which is being described as “brief” and “informal”, will include a time of common prayer and lunch at the Pope’s residence, the Domus Sanctae Marthae.

It will be the first encounter between the two men, who began their respective ministries within days of each other in March. Francis’s inaugural Mass took place on March 19 and Archbishop Welby was enthroned on March 21.

Archbishop Welby congratulated the Pope upon his election, but was unable to attend the inauguration because he was preparing for his enthronement at Canterbury.

Pope Francis sent a cordial reply to the archbishop’s message. He said: “I thank you for the kind words contained in your message to me at my election, and I wish in turn to offer my greetings and best wishes on the occasion of your enthronement at Canterbury Cathedral.

“The pastoral ministry is a call to walk in fidelity to the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Please be assured of my prayers as you take up your new responsibilities, and I ask you to pray for me as I respond to the new call that the Lord has addressed to me.

“I look forward to meeting you in the near future, and to continuing the warm fraternal relations that our predecessors enjoyed.”

  • NatOns

    “Pope Francis sent a cordial reply to the archbishop’s message.”

    This cordial reply may well be the limit of any oecumenical message these pastors can share – although it might be repeated and magnified ad infinitum .. and no doubt must be, for want of any more positive common household management the two can share.

    I pray hard for this poor Archbishop in the Cross set on his willing shoulders; that he seems to have had a haunted / hunted look from his elevation to the episcopal Throne of Canterbury may be photographic selection or a natural shyness .. but it is prophetic notwithstanding.

  • scary goat

    Imagine if the AB of C converted to the Catholic Faith? …..well, there’s no harm in a hopeful flight of fantasy from time to time. :-s

  • Paul

    Or if the Bishop of Rome converted to Anglicanism – well, there’s no harm in a hopeful flight of fantasy from time to time – or is there?

  • scary goat

    LOL…I was sort of assuming that wouldn’t happen.

  • teigitur

    One would wonder why on earth he, or anyone else would ever do that. The best move of my life was swimming the Tiber. Though one does miss choral evensong from time to time.

  • Don Camillo

    Why swim the Tiber? The Vatican is on this side of it.

  • Clare

    Brothers and sisters, pray for this meeting. The archbishop is receiving all sorts of flack for sticking up for traditional marriage. This could be a HUGE uniting moment, bringing the church together in holiness and faithfulness to God’s law. Pray that the Pope will have words for the Archbishop to strengthen and soothe him. Pray that the Archbishop will have the courage to disregard politics as much as the Holy Father does. This is a crucial moment in church history.

    Blessings and love,
    a young American Anglo-Catholic

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    Pray, instead, for the Ordinariates, and for the return of these heretics into the orthodoxy of the Faith.