Saturday, 17 March 2012

Rowan Williams announces he is going to stand down. Who will be the next Archbishop?

Rowan Williams feelings upon deciding to retire as Archbishop - as interpreted by the legendary Matt:
there is no doubt that the job of being the Archbishop of Canterbury is one of the toughest jobs - something that would stretch anyone. I have nothing but praise for the work of Dr Rowan Williams. He was confirmed as the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury and spiritual leader of the 77-million-strong Anglican Communion in December 2002, and will step down at the end of this year.

The procedure for the next Archbishop is as follows:
Dr Williams' successor will be named by the Prime Minister, after being given a "preferred name" by the Church's appointments commission, which is made up of three clergy and three members of the laity. It is chaired by a civil servant.
The widespread favourite is Dr John Sentamu, the Bishop of York.
I often see John Sentamu on the train to and from the North East [we are both in second class]. I do not think I have ever come across a man who smiles so much. If faith is about inner peace then Dr Sentamu seems to have it absolutely.
However, I note that the Bishop of York has initially said he would not want the job. Many locals in Northumberland would suggest that Canon Graham Usher would be perfect for the job but we are reluctantly to let him go as yet!

Finally, a word on Dr Williams:
Dr Williams said his successor would need the "constitution of an ox and the skin of a rhinoceros". He described the Church of England as a "great treasure" which was still a place where many people sought inspiration and comfort in times of need. He added, "I would like the successor that God would like."
"But he will, I think, have to look with positive, hopeful eyes on a Church which, for all its problems, is still, for so many people, a place to which they resort in times of need and crisis, a place to which they look for inspiration. I think the Church of England is a great treasure. I wish my successor well in the stewardship of it."
We should be proud of the efforts this good man has made to steer the Church through difficult times.