Monday, 18 February 2013

Archbishop's new Director of Reconciliation

Press release from Lambeth Palace

Monday 18th February 2011

Archbishop’s new Director of Reconciliation

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is delighted to announce the appointment of Canon David Porter as Director for Reconciliation at Lambeth Palace. Canon David will work part time on the Archbishop’s personal staff, seconded by Coventry Cathedral where he remains Canon Director for Reconciliation Ministry - bringing first-hand knowledge of the Cathedral’s eminent and longstanding reconciliation work to Lambeth Palace and the wider Church.

The focus of Canon David’s role will be to enable the Church to make a powerful contribution to transforming the often violent conflicts which overshadow the lives of so many people in the world. His initial focus will be on supporting creative ways for renewing conversations and relationships around deeply held differences within the Church of England and the Anglican Communion.

Canon David brings extensive front-line experience in the area of reconciliation having served on the Northern Ireland Civic Forum, chairing its working group on peacebuilding and reconciliation, as well serving as a member of the Northern Ireland Community Relations Council. Since September 2008 David has been the Canon Director for Reconciliation Ministry at Coventry Cathedral, England. An experienced community relations activist, peacebuilding practitioner and community theologian he has thirty years experience in regional, national and international faith based organisations.

Speaking about his new position, Canon David Porter said:

“How we live with our deepest differences both within the Church and our increasingly fractured world, is one of the major challenges to the credibility of Christianity as good news.”
“It is a privilege to be asked to take on this responsibility for Archbishop Justin and I look forward to working with him in serving the Church in making reconciliation and peacebuilding a theological and practical priority in its life and witness.”

Speaking about the appointment, Archbishop Justin said:

“I am delighted to welcome Canon David Porter, Canon for Reconciliation at Coventry, who will join my personal staff part time as the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Director for Reconciliation. David brings a wealth of experience in reconciliation and peacebuilding from his work in Northern Ireland and through the Community of the Cross of Nails in Coventry. Conflict is an ever present reality both in the Church and wider society. Christians have been at the centre of reconciliation throughout history. We may not have always handled our own conflicts wisely, but it is essential that we work towards demonstrating ways of reducing destructive conflict in our world - and also to setting an example of how to manage conflict within the Church.”

Information about Canon Porter and the Coventry Cathedral Ministry of Reconciliation is below the fold.

Canon David W Porter - Canon Director for Reconciliation Ministry

David is Canon Director for Reconciliation Ministry at Coventry Cathedral. Previously he was co-founder and Director of ECONI (Evangelical Contribution on Northern Ireland). An experienced community relations activist, peace building practitioner and community theologian, David is honorary Research Fellow in Peace Studies at Coventry University. In 2006 he was Visiting Practitioner Fellow at the Centre for Reconciliation, Duke University Divinity School.

From 2007 until 2011 David was a member of the Northern Ireland Community Relations Council and a trustee of Warwickshire based peace building charity, CORD. In 2007 he was appointed by the British government to the independent Consultative Group on the Past. Chaired by Lord Eames their report to government in 2009 set out proposals for how to deal with the legacy of the troubles in Northern Ireland. In 2000/03, David served on the Northern Ireland Civic Forum, chairing its working group on peace building and reconciliation. He is an honours graduate in Theology from the London School of Theology, with a Masters in Peace Studies from the University of Ulster.

Coventry Cathedral Ministry of Reconciliation

Coventry Cathedral is one of the world’s oldest religious-based centres for reconciliation. Following the destruction of the Cathedral in 1940, Provost Howard made a commitment not to revenge, but to forgiveness and reconciliation with those responsible.

Using a national radio broadcast from the cathedral ruins on Christmas Day 1940 he declared that when the war was over he would work with those who had been enemies ‘to build a kinder, more Christ-child-like world.’

It was this moral and prophetic vision which led to Coventry Cathedral’s development as a world Centre for Reconciliation, which over the years has provided inspiration and support to many Christians addressing ongoing conflict in contemporary society. A major part of this ministry was the establishment of the Community of the Cross of Nails, which today is an international network of over 170 CCN Partners in 35 countries committed to a shared ministry of reconciliation.

The Cathedral’s work for reconciliation has involved it in some of the world’s most difficult and longstanding areas of conflict. Building on this experience we are committed to develop our ministry as a centre for excellence to resource the church in the practical outworking of reconciliation as an integral part of Christian worship, witness and discipleship

Posted by Peter Owen on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 11:08am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England
Comments

I just love the segue from "often violent conflicts that overshadow the lives of so many people in the world" into "deeply held differences within the Church of England".

Posted by: John S on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 11:52am GMT

Perhaps his first trip will be up to Sheffield where the Church of England has to 'reconcile' itself with AMiE, the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans and GAFCON.

Posted by: Pluralist on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 4:03pm GMT

Reading the news from Sheffield, it seems that he will have his work cut out for him. This is a very positive step by Justin Welby. Prayers for Canon David.

Posted by: Karen MacQueen+ on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 7:41pm GMT

"The focus of Canon David’s role will be to enable the Church to make a powerful contribution to transforming the often violent conflicts which overshadow the lives of so many people in the world."

E.g., the violence inflicted on so many LGBT people around the world, and the Churches' role from neglect, to active agitation of same?

We're paying attention, Canon David. Prayers.

Posted by: JCF on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 7:47pm GMT

Perhaps he should have a look at this: http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/ens/2013/02/18/from-repentance-to-hope-in-virginia/

It probably isn't a good idea to proceed as if CoE is inventing reconciliation.

Posted by: Cynthia on Monday, 18 February 2013 at 7:58pm GMT

"Tranforming violent conflicts around the world" ? Maybe this ministry, then, will begin with the violence aided and abetted by the GAFCON Churches aganst LGBT people in their Provinces

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Tuesday, 19 February 2013 at 3:46am GMT

I think that the Canon will learn very quickly that reconciliation with GAFCON will be similar to ecumenism with Rome, "You lot come around to do what we say is correct or don't come around at all."

Posted by: Bro David on Tuesday, 19 February 2013 at 6:08am GMT

Exactly Fa. Ron and Bro David.

I still live in disbelief that Rowan actually punished TEC and treated our female PB and gay bishop shabbily because we wouldn't conform to the beliefs of human rights abusers.

Hopefully Justin and this new Director of Reconciliation will have a new attitude.

Posted by: Cynthia on Wednesday, 20 February 2013 at 5:45am GMT

Maybe the new director can help with this.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/21/pope-retired-amid-gay-bishop-blackmail-inquiry

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Friday, 22 February 2013 at 12:16am GMT
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