Comments: Chair of CNC for Canterbury appointment announced

"The Archbishop is also the head of world-wide Anglican Communion."

Isn't there a key word missing here?


Posted by Jeremy at Thursday, 26 April 2012 at 11:59am BST

Safe pair of hands.

Posted by Lapinbizarre/Roger Mortimer at Thursday, 26 April 2012 at 12:01pm BST

Ah, yes, Roger; but, safe for whom?

Posted by Marshall Scott at Thursday, 26 April 2012 at 3:19pm BST

I think it is a good appointment. His action over the Falklands War shows he is a man of principle .He worships in a local church and his wife is a Lay Minister so he is in touch with the grass roots.

He will not allow people to be driven to tears or others to bully people in the loo!

Jean Mayland

Posted by Jean Mary Mayland at Thursday, 26 April 2012 at 4:48pm BST

More to the point, Miranda Hart's uncle.

Posted by Wilf at Thursday, 26 April 2012 at 8:12pm BST

"Miranda Hart's uncle"

My faith in the process is rekindled.

Posted by Andrew at Saturday, 28 April 2012 at 1:23am BST

"Such fun!"

Posted by Father David at Sunday, 29 April 2012 at 4:12pm BST

When will we know the full make up of the Commission, I wonder? The names of the two bishops and the six from the Diocese of Canterbury.

Posted by Perry Butler at Sunday, 29 April 2012 at 7:04pm BST

The Canterbury Vacancy in See Committee will elect the six diocesan members on 3 May.

See about half way down this web page.

Posted by Peter Owen at Sunday, 29 April 2012 at 7:59pm BST

I hope, and I think I say this fairly, that they don't choose another academic. Dr Williams is a good man and he's had a horrendously difficult job to do. However I think it's fair to say that his background has hampered him a little in doing the specific job of Archbishop of Canterbury. The job doesn't need a man of great intellectual sophistication and prowess. It needs someone who is a good diplomat, got a little cunning and tell which way the wind's blowing.

Posted by Adrian at Sunday, 29 April 2012 at 9:22pm BST

Yet, Adrian we look back to Michael Ramsay with great fondness....and William Temple was a man of considerable academic prowess. But they didnt have a completely dysfunctional Anglican Communion to try and keep together! Bishop Venables on the other hand, on the strength of a Dip Ed feels able to make all sorts of theological judgements which many of us find embarrasingly the fact there are now two Anglicanisms etc. There is no one of +Rowan's academic prowess on offer...indeed I think when he retires it will be the first time since the Reformation the Bench has nobody who held the rank of University Professor....but we surely need someone with some intelligence. Rather than cunning I would suggest intuition...a realistic sense of what is possible given the cards that have been dealt.

Posted by Perry Butler at Monday, 30 April 2012 at 12:25pm BST

Truth to tell - sadly, we don't really have any true academics on the Bench anymore. After a long and distinguished line of academics serving as Bishop of Durham - including the great Michael Ramsey and ending with Tom Wright - now returned to university life - Dunelm is now held by a former executive from the Oil Industry and a man greatly influenced by the ministry of HTB. If ever a diocese was in need of revival it must surely be Durham. If ever a Church was in need of revival it must surely be the Church of England. What we need at Canterbury is a spiritual giant - but now Rowan is leaving us - we just ain't got one!

Posted by Father David at Monday, 30 April 2012 at 4:47pm BST

It is very easy to romanticize Archbishops past and present.

'spiritual giants' is probably a bit ott.

Let's get real, shall we ?

Posted by LaurenceR at Monday, 30 April 2012 at 9:00pm BST

The Roman Catholic Church in John Paul II produced a spiritual giant - the Coptic Church in Egypt in Pope Shenoudah III produced a spiritual giant. The Roman Catholic Church in Cardinal Basil Hume produced a spiritual giant. The Church of England in Michael Ramsey produced a spiritual giant. Hardly OTT and you can cannot get more "real" than this recent assembly of spiritual giants - so where are the spiritual giants of the present age within the CofE?

Posted by Father David at Tuesday, 1 May 2012 at 4:34am BST

and I think Father David is very unfair to the newly consecrated Bishop of Durham. Durham hasnt always had academic bishops...and I gather what it has been most in need of in the last decade is someone who will help deal with a lot of financial and other organizational problems with which, I suspect, academics are not the best people to grapple.

Posted by Perry Butler at Tuesday, 1 May 2012 at 11:39am BST

Perry, I don't think I was being in the least "very unfair" to the present occupant of the see of Durham. Indeed, I agree with you that Durham definitely needs assistance in helping to deal with its current financial and organisational problems - no doubt Justin Welby's managerial experience in the Oil Industry will stand him in good stead in tackling these difficulties and hopefully his Christian formation at HTB will assist in the revival of the faith in Cuthbert's great diocese.
At the same time it greatly weakens the present Bench to be so completely lacking in scholar bishops. Surely we need fewer bureaucrats in purple shirts and far more spiritual giants.

Posted by Father David at Tuesday, 1 May 2012 at 3:23pm BST

Unfortunately spiritual giants are a bit thin on the ground at the moment. I agree that the Bench needs some scholars though they dont have to be tied to particular sees...Durham at this time may well need Bishop Justin's organisational experience, and from what I have heard from friends in Liverpool ,although formed at HTB his sympathies and indeed subsequent experience is much wider.But academics dont always make good bishops...I think of Richard Hanson's brief tenure in Clougher...Its a pity Cathedral posts now involve what they do...scholarly canons and deans feeding their learning into the House of Bishops might be a good idea.

Posted by Perry Butler at Tuesday, 1 May 2012 at 6:21pm BST

The diocese of Durham is very close to my heart and I wish the new incumbent of the highest throne in Christendom within the greatest cathedral on planet earth bar none - every success in his episcopal ministry.
I only ever met Richard Hanson, sometime Bishop of Clogher in the emerald isle, once. The only thing I can remember of our conversation is when he asked me - "Are you good at saying thank you? If so you will make a good bishop for bishops are merely thanking machines" I try always to express gratitude and to live the eucharistic life however, to date, I have not yet attained the fulness of ministry!
But, dear Perry, academics do often make jolly good bishops. Again, just look at the outstandingly good scholar bishops of Dunelm - Lightfoot, Westcott, Henson, the two Ramseys - Michael and Ian, Habgood, Jenkins and Wright.

Posted by Father David at Tuesday, 1 May 2012 at 8:03pm BST
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