Thinking Anglicans

New Bishop of Durham

From 10 Downing Street: Diocese of Durham

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Very Reverend Justin Portal Welby, MA, Hon FCT, Dean of Liverpool, for election as Bishop of Durham in succession to the Right Reverend Nicholas Thomas Wright, MA, DPhil, DD, on his resignation on the 31 August 2010.

Notes for editors

Justin Welby (aged 55) was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge. After a career in the oil industry in Paris and London, he trained for the ministry at Cranmer Hall and St John’s College Durham. He served his title at Chilvers Coton with Astley, Coventry diocese from 1992 to 1995. From 1995 to 2002 he was Rector of Southam and also Vicar of Ufton, Coventry diocese from 1998 to 2002. From 2002 to 2007 he was Canon Residentiary at Coventry Cathedral; and was Co-Director for International Ministry from 2002 to 2005. From 2005 to 2007 he was Sub-Dean at Coventry Cathedral and also Canon for Reconciliation Ministry and in 2007 was also Priest-in-Charge at Coventry Holy Trinity. Since 2007 he has been Dean of Liverpool.

From 2000 to 2002 he was Chairman of an NHS Hospital Trust, and he currently also serves on the Committee of Reference for the ethical funds of a large investment company in the City of London.

Justin Welby is married to Caroline and they have had six children (one of whom died in infancy). His recreations include most things French and sailing.

The Diocese of Durham website has a detailed press release, with photos: NEW BISHOP DESIGNATE OF DURHAM ANNOUNCED.

Liverpool Cathedral has Justin Welby, Dean of Liverpool is to be the next Bishop of Durham.

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Father Ron Smith
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His work in Coventry & Liverpool sounds impressive. He is a later vocation clergy-person with some experience of the real world (the oil industry). Has he learned more than the go-go evangelism of the ‘Alpha’ course at H.T., Brompton? If not, I would worry about his propensity for inclusiveness in the Church – more like the last one, really? However, he has been called to one of the primary dioceses in the Church of England. He needs our prayers.

Lister Tonge
Guest
Lister Tonge

There is a God!

badman
Guest
badman

Interesting choice. Probably a smoother operator and a “safer pair of hands” than N T Wright although without his academic distinction. Educated Eton College and Trinity College, Cambridge. A strong interest in the ethics of the financial and business world, about which he has published a number of books. A former oil company executive. Grandson of Rab Butler’s daughter, son of Winston Churchill’s private secretary (Welby’s mother) and also son of an old flame of Vanessa Redgrave (his father), step-son of a Labour life peer. Before he was ordained he was very active at Holy Trinity Brompton, a fierce evangelical… Read more »

RJB
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RJB

My initial response is to wince at the words “Holy Trinity, Brompton”. But I see this fellow has written a rather sensible (if somewhat unimaginative) article about Islam and Christianity here: http://dse.over-blog.org/article-12353070.html
So if he carries on in that vein he might do well for himself. Insha’Allah!

Lister Tonge
Guest
Lister Tonge

I’m wondering how long it will take for people’s suppositions, impressions and imaginings in posts here to be regarded as facts upon which judgements (adverse, of course: we have a liberal reputation to maintain) can then be soundly constructed.

I have never heard a bad word about this man from those who know him and I have heard him spoken of as one of the best priests in the C of E.

Marshall Scott
Guest

So, my English siblings, we are indeed divided by a common language, and my curiosity is piqued. What does it mean that “he served his *title*?”

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

You absolutely cannot be ordained a deacon in the CofE unless and until you have a specific job of work to do. That first job, usually as an assistant curate somewhere, is commonly referred to as a “title post” and holding it is referred to as “serving a title”. Those who hold such posts will usually be ordained priest after about one year, but will continue to serve in the same job for three to four years in total. This initial post is considered an essential element of the training of clergy, and “training incumbents” who supervise such curates are… Read more »

MadPriest
Guest

Reading this bloke’s biography makes it obvious to me that the whole “fresh expression of church” thing is a fabrication and smokescreen. Another Oxbridge bishop and with a few lords and ladies in his family tree to boot. One thing is for certain, nobody can accuse us of being the church of the poor.

And all this just because Bishop Jenkins dared to stand up to Mrs Thatcher on behalf of the striking miners.

Lister Tonge
Guest
Lister Tonge

MadPriest:

And your point is?

Graham Ward
Guest
Graham Ward

A friend dragged me along to HTB a few times in the late ’80’s. It was horrific. No surprise that one of their lay leaders was an old Etonian earning no doubt a very large salary working for an oil company. Please forgive my cynicism at any suggestion that this might be an appointment to celebrate. I hope my prejudices are unfounded.

Jonathan Kirkpatrick
Guest
Jonathan Kirkpatrick

Isn’t the memory a strange device? This name has just jumped out at me having not had any cause to recall it for the past 20+ years. I was his ACCM Selection Secretary. He must therefore be a very good thing 🙂

john
Guest
john

‘One thing is for certain, nobody can accuse us of being the church of the poor.’

That’s a very good comment.

David Wilson
Guest
David Wilson

I wouldnt knock Alpha too much – there arent many outreaches that can hope to have 20 hours of discussion to consider the evidence of who Jesus is – i.e. the resurrected Son of God, and for someone to even consider trusting in Him and following Him as a disciple. It has brought more people into our church than any other outreach. However it is only the start of the discipleship and establishing a relationship with our brother the Lord Jesus and our heavenly Father. We have to work on the on-going Spiritual growth.

JCF
Guest
JCF

“20 hours of discussion to consider the evidence of who Jesus is – i.e. the resurrected Son of God, and for someone to even consider trusting in Him and following Him as a disciple” Is THAT what “Alpha” is? [On the left side of The Pond, I only know the name, and that English Anglicans feel passionately about it, one way or the other] All I can say in response to your description, DavidW, is *ugh*. That sounds like a recipe for coercing adherents to (the heretical) GeeZus, and completely missing Jesus of Nazareth, Prince of Peace and Lord of… Read more »

David Shepherd
Guest

‘Then some of the believers who belonged to the party of the Pharisees stood up and said, “The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to obey the law of Moses.’ (Acts 15:5) Consider Cornelius’ household. As with Alpha, the Gentile conversion to Christ is all too easy, even if we’re all sinners saved by grace. So, like the Pharisees, we need to add another hurdle to get to the ‘real’ Jesus. Put some intellectual bodyguards around Him and build a priestly caste system. Just to keep the second-class unlearned riff-raff out. Pity the conscientious long-serving elder brother, protesting against his… Read more »

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

JCF Actually, although I personally find Alpha theology too constricting and evangelical, it is far more than a program to coerce adherents to GeeZus. In fact, GeeZus is an American invention, he doesn’t really have many followers on the other side of the pond at all. Alpha is well thought through and, yes, it is aimed at converting people, but you can’t necessary argue with that! Alpha has grown hugely since it was first developed, and although all courses use the same materials and follow the same program, depending on the course leader they can be hugely searching, empowering and… Read more »

MarkBrunson
Guest

It does tend to sound like classic brainwashing techniques used by cults, JCF.

Robert ian williams
Guest
Robert ian williams

An old Etonian appoints another old Etonian ..in the name of our Queen.

Robert ian Williams
Guest
Robert ian Williams

The Alpha course is a tightly run course…which culminates in a Holy Spirit weekend, borrowed fom the charismatic fringe. Visit Holy Trinity HQ and see the people rolling about on the floor, ” slain in the spirit” ( so called Toronto blessing)..thats how unbalanced it is..and several Catholics have been taken in by it hook, line and sinker.

Lister Tonge
Guest
Lister Tonge

RIW:

And your point is?

JCF
Guest
JCF

“Alpha is well thought through and, yes, it is aimed at converting people, but you can’t necessary argue with that!” Actually, I can and I *do* argue w/ that, Erika. I’ll share the Good News w/ anyone who wants to talk w/ me about it… …but the only one I’m interested in *converting* is MYSELF. To “aim at converting” anyone else, is Playing God, as far as I’m concerned. I won’t do it, and I won’t be a part of a church that plans to it either. We’ve got too much Gospel work to do, to undermine that by trying… Read more »

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

JCF
that may well be all you are interested in, but can you deduct from that that anyone whose outlook is different is to be dismissed as belonging to a “Krazy Kult”?

A sense of proportion would be helpful.

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“by their fruits you shall know them”

Robert ian Williams
Guest
Robert ian Williams

It is a travesty of the authentic gospel and Holy Spirit.

David Shepherd
Guest
David Shepherd

‘Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.’ (Acts 2:13). Why would the first recipients of the Holy Spirit be thought drunk? I wonder. Alpha is the latest in a long line of ‘travesties’ that make the gospel accessible. It really needs the threatened, boring ‘middle-managers’ of the church to sanitise, rationalise and Europeanise it to death. RIW, it must be particularly galling that one of your own and one of four moderators of Vatican 2, the late Cardinal Suenens, endorsed the Catholic Charismatic Movement as a genuine expression of the Holy Spirit’s work… Read more »

David Emmott
Guest
David Emmott

If we must have old Etonians in the church (and why not? better than having them in the Government) it’s as well that we have a few like Justin Welby. Who sends his daughters to the local comp and addresses anti-government demonstrations in his cathedral.

Lister Tonge
Guest
Lister Tonge

Thanks, RIW: I have some sympathy with your point.

What worries me, though, is the poisonous notion that because Justin Welby belonged at HTB TWENTY YEARS AGO he is in some way a Bad Thing.

Come on, Liberals: grow up! Take note of those who know this man, instead of spinning speculation and innuendo into character assassination. Try supporting someone and praying for him instead of suggesting what ‘might’ not suit your own prejudices.

Gossip (aka ‘blog’) of this kind has always been bad and because it is ‘Liberal’ doesn’t make it better.

Father Ron Smith
Guest

David Shepherd, having experience, both of the early charismatic movement (1960’s) and the later Alpha phenomenon; I can honestly say that I preferred the former. It was, I think, helped by Good Pope John XXIII, who prayed that the Holy Spirit might come upon the Church “as on the Day of Pentecost” I was very much influenced for the good by the charismatic movement – but not until it had been accepted by the Roman Catholics (Cardinal Suenens) as, being of an Anglo-Catholic persuasion, I had questioned the excesses of the preliminary advocates of the ‘Tongues Movement’ – who seemed… Read more »

JCF
Guest
JCF

The *methods* sound like a cult, Erika. Short-term but intense, w/ a definite outcome (accepting Jesus Christ as your Personal Saviour, I’m guessing?) in mind. You can’t really meet *Jesus* in 20 hours {*}, but you CAN be indoctrinated into Geezus. Turn or burn!

{*} But you can meet (eat!) Jesus in 20 *seconds*. If they’re the 20 seconds of *God’s* choosing, not some Evangelical’s.

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

JCF Maybe you should read up on Alpha before you talk about it. It’s usually advertised round here outside village churches. People meet once a week in someone’s house for a shared meal and the course content. The evening takes about 3-4 hours. People are free not to come back. Although Alpha organisers hope that people will find God (not GeeZus, you really really will have to let go of that American evengelical mindset. It doesn’t exist here, however much you’d like to believe it). But if it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. If it does happen for some people,… Read more »

Perry Butler
Guest
Perry Butler

I agree with Lister…the C of E is full of people who began firmly in the evangelical camp and have moved over the years.I would hope nobody is just as they were when they left theological college throughout their lives.

David Shepherd
Guest

Some Anglican churches are even merging Alpha courses with the catechism from the Book of Common Prayer.

Since the root meaning of catechism (‘sounding down (into the ears)’) is indoctrination with its systematic memorization of faith responses, we might well investigate the suspicion that many confirmation candidates who learn it are being brain-washed.

Given the danger, are most churches now wary of the Book of Common Prayer catechism? Do churches avoid the subtle psychological programming of group confirmation classes?

Or is it really just the case that any teaching content can be abused and therefore needs to be applied ethically?

Perry Butler
Guest
Perry Butler

Sadly I doubt whether the BCP catechism is much used now…it is a bit archaic. The Revised Catechism of the early 1960’s has rather sunk too tho it is still in print. An attempt to revise the catechism in the mid 80’s ( I was on the ctte) proved abortive. I know some bishops are sympathetic to the idea of a revision but generally feel there is little will to achieve this. Yet it seems odd to me Common Worship lacks a catechism/outline of the faith…other provinces are ahead of us in this respect.There is, to my mind, too much… Read more »

Louise Buckley
Guest
Louise Buckley

I wish Justin all the best in Durham, after working with him in Liverpool I know he will truly care for the community and people. He is a lovely person and very down to earth.