Comments: Archbishop Justin Welby

oh lovely, who can resist orders of service !

Let's hope not expensively produced but xeroxed !

Posted by Laurence Roberts at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 5:00pm GMT

Deeply disappointing that one of his first official utterances is support for the CoE's homophobic statements and positions. It would have been easy enough to refer to the variety of positions within the CoE that need to be heard and considered. Saying that he has to think about the "whole Anglican communion" rather than just the 1.25 million in England also doesn't bode well. Is Justin poised to used human rights abusers in Uganda to continue Rowan's policy of isolating TEC, Canada, and those who actually believe that all people are created in the image of God?

I wish him good luck, but his focus needs to be at home.

Posted by Cynthia at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 5:47pm GMT

Not quite sure when St Paul's Cathedral muscled in as the venue for the confirmation process for a new Archbishop? Fairly recently if I remember rightly, as the traditional place was in St Mary le Bow in Cheapside the City of London. George Carey was confirmed there.

Historically, previous confirmations have had their problems in St Mary' but hasn't St Paul's Cathedral got enough kudos already without upstaging and usurping the traditional Bow Bells church?

I look forward to the Dean and Chapter's measured explanation...

Posted by Concerned Anglican at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 6:27pm GMT

I must say that the photograph of the line up of bishops (Leicester, Rochester, Salisbury, London,York, Worcester, Lincoln and Norwich) doesn't portray their Lordships as looking very happy in welcoming the new Primate of All England!

"Say ye holy shepherds say
What your joyful news today?"

Posted by Father David at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 7:02pm GMT

Cynthia, I agree entirely about 'deeply disappointing'. I would add: 'utterly imbecilic', because these bishops and archbishops will be beaten on this issue - rightly so, in my opinion, but they will drag the rest of us (in the UK) into the mud.

Posted by John at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 7:25pm GMT

What Cynthia Said. He has my prayers---but they are particularly for his *conversion*. Gracious God, grant us ALL More Light!

Posted by JCF at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 7:41pm GMT

I agree with Cynthia about the vital focus being England but I hope he will change his position over gay marriage .Sad he attacked it straight away but I suppose it was in response to a question.

Posted by Jean Mayland at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 8:10pm GMT

Does anyone know why is he wearing a black gown over the linen one when the other bishops are a wearing red one? Anything to do with his churchmanship?

Posted by Tom at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 8:12pm GMT

Unlike, Cynthia, John, et al, in my opinion this is first glimmer of hope I see for the Communion. Have the winds shifted? I pray so. God bless and guide ++Justin.

Posted by Rob Holman at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 11:07pm GMT

"Deeply disappointing that one of his first official utterances is support for the CoE's homophobic statements and positions." Indeed.

Is "Virger" a misspelling of "Verger"?

Posted by Spirit of Vatican II at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 11:45pm GMT

Rowan Williams's confirmation of election also took place in St Paul's (Monday 2 December 2002 according to the copy of the Order of Service etc in front of me).

I think the problems with St Mary-le-Bow are size and accessibility. St Paul's permits many more people to be present and to see what is going on, including the media. Additionally, I am told that the Court at St Mary-le-Bow is in the Crypt and it is virtually impossible for anyone other than the able-bodied to access it. St Paul's may have its own accessibility issues (with lots of steps up to the main entrance) but it is certainly possible for the less able to gain access.

Posted by Simon Kershaw at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 11:52pm GMT

Tom: I know that for some reason he likes to wear a black shirt and not a magenta one, perhaps this applies to his rochet as well.

Posted by evensongjunkie at Monday, 4 February 2013 at 11:57pm GMT

@Tom: "Does anyone know why is he wearing a black gown over the linen one when the other bishops are a wearing red one? Anything to do with his churchmanship?"

The "gown" is a chimere.

According to Wikipedia "Traditionally, the red chimere was worn only by bishops holding the degree of Doctor of Divinity and the black chimere by the others, arising from the academic history of the garment. However, in recent times this distinction has not always been followed."

So could it be that he doesn't hold a DD, and is therefore correctly wearing a black chimere?

Posted by Alan T Perry at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 12:11am GMT

I thought there was a softening of mood which was very welcome

Posted by Craig Nelson at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 12:24am GMT

The photos do give the impression of a sombre occasion.

Posted by Savi Hensman at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 1:07am GMT

Prayers for the new Archbishop from across the water.

Though the order of service indicates that at least a couple of females took part in the liturgy, the lineup of dour-looking males in the photographs serves to dramatise the CofE's present situation.

Spirit, I have come upon this spelling of 'virger' before, and my 1947 Shorter Oxford English Dictionary tells me that it "is still retained in various cathedrals, e.g. St. Paul's and Winchester". What in America we call the 'verge' (the staff of office) can correspondingly be spelt 'virge'.

Posted by Mary Clara at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 3:58am GMT

I don't know why anyone would be disappointed. What did you expect, after all this? Stubborn, selfish, fearful rejection of change masquerading as some sort of commitment to Holiness is the hallmark of the church.

Posted by MarkBrunson at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 4:49am GMT

Rob, I wish you'd explain your "glimmer of hope" and question about the "winds shifting." Rowan supported the same homophobic utterances that Justin supported. And Rowan attempted to use the "80 million Anglican Communion" as leverage to ram misogyny and homophobia down the throats of the progressive churches. Justin's talk actually threatens more of the same.

Hope would be church leaders who understand that God created a diverse world and that ALL of us are created in God's image, not just old white men in England. Homophobia and misogyny are theologically lame, and it's hurtful. Very hurtful. That can't be supported by the loving Christ.

Posted by Cynthia at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 6:23am GMT

Red or black? I thought it was to do with red (or not) letter days. Here in the Church of Ireland Bishops in black chimeres are often seen, according to the Kalendar, I note that newly consecrated bishops in the C of E always wear black chimeres, even if their consecrators are in scarlet. In the Lords bishops seem to be in black as far as I can tell. I suspect that C of E bishops should wear black more often, but the urge to pretend they are cardinsals must be hard to resist-indeed at an Ebbsfleet 'do' he was dressed as one.

Posted by rambler at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 8:42am GMT

@evensongjunkie. Rowan Williams also chose to avoid the pink vest but I thought that was to be more like the Roman Catholic Bishops who when wearing a suit only differentiate themselves from lesser clergy by the wearing of a pectoral cross.

@ Alan T Perry, Thanks for that. I had thought that academic dress was, on the contrary, modelled on older monastic choir dress. The black pleated Benedictine monk's cowl gave way to the open-fronted BA gown, with an adaptation of slits in the sleeves at the MA level. BA hoods lined with white fur (Oxford + Cambridge) were standard Cluniac monk's garb in cold winter churches. The MA silk-lined hood was a light summer-weight adaptation. So I thought the DDs and others got their red from bishops' choir dress, rather than the other way round. Regarding the DD, isn't this usually conferred more like an honorary doctorate rather than an earned PhD?

I realise this is all rather trivial faced with the possibility that the archbishop will be delivering more of the same. Like Cynthia, I can't say I'm very hopeful but time will tell. Perhaps Welby will not prove to be the disappointment Rowan Williams has been because expectations of him are lower from the liberal side.

Posted by Tom at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 9:31am GMT

Thanks for the explanation Simon. My spies tell me too that that is the official reason. In fact it is a pretty feeble excuse and it is felt at least by some that St Paul's managed a coup d'etat for their own benefit. Poor little St Mary le Bow, they'll never get the privilege back again.

Posted by Concerned Anglican at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 1:33pm GMT

Simon — you are right that, historically, the court at St Mary-le-Bow Church, Cheapside, was in the crypt of the church: hence its full name as the "Arches Court of Canterbury". However, in recent years (unless the practice has been reversed very recently), court proceedings have taken place, not in the crypt but in the nave of the church. This was certainly the case on the two occasions I have attended the court: for the confirmation of the election of the present Bishop of St Edmundsbury & Ipswich on 22nd October 2007 (but with the reception after the ceremony held in the crypt) and for the appeal to the Arches Court from the Bath & Wells Consistory Court in the case of Re Hutton Churchyard on 16th July 2008. But obviously, in view of the national interest that there is in the appointment of a new Archbishop of Canterbury and the process by which he formally becomes the Archbishop, which is not confined to the people of the diocese of Canterbury, it made sense to move the service incorporating the confirmation of Justin Welby's election to St Paul's Cathedral.

Posted by David Lamming at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 3:52pm GMT

Fear not for the future of St Mary le Bow as the normal venue of confirmations of election. +Sentamu was confirmed there & so are jobbing Bishops. But as others have said it's probably to small for all who want to see Cantuar confirmed.

Incidentally, Simon, the Court of the Arches now normally sits in the upstairs church. Anciently it sat in the crypt which as you say isn't accessible to wheelchair users.

Posted by James Allport at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 8:28pm GMT

The black chimere tends to be worn by the person being "done" (consecrated, licensed, whatever) while the rest of the bishops wear a red chimere. And "virger" is St Paul's speak for "verger". And I'm becoming an ecclesiastical anorak. Good Lord, deliver us...

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 9:08pm GMT

And the reason why St Paul's was that (a) Justin wanted it in the context of worship, not just the usual legal gubbins that gets done normally, and (b) he wanted people to be able to come. So don't pity St Mary le Bow; I'm sure they'll get it back for the next one that isn't in the Northern Province (Blackburn, Manchester and Durham in the queue)

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 9:33pm GMT


Are you saying that the Bishop of Ebbsfleet was dressed as a cardinal? I'd think it unlikely - though he is seen in Roman episcopal choir dress reasonably often.

The Vicar of St Mary, Kenton is a chaplain to the Queen and his interpretation of what he should wear in choir makes him look a little like a cardinal in his scarlet.

Posted by Richard at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 10:20pm GMT

Richard: you are quire right. crimson rather than scarlet, Gorgeous anyway.

Posted by rambler at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 10:46pm GMT

Pete Broadbent, thank you for a spirited intervention regarding hard done by St Mary le Bow.

Alas, there's nothing in your analysis that leaves a convincing argument (during worship etc) for St Paul's over and above what could have been done in the traditional 'Court of Arches' venue. St Paul's still looks like a take over job - whatever will they be after next - King William V's coronation perhaps, on the grounds that there's more space and better worship?

Posted by Concerned Anglican at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 10:58pm GMT

I beg to differ with the Bishop of Willesden but bishops being consecrated in the Southern Province tend to wear red chimeres - while those being "done" in the Northern Province wear black chimeres.

Posted by Father David at Tuesday, 5 February 2013 at 11:23pm GMT

So the new ABC is greeted by arguing over venues and sex and an extensive discussion of clergy fashion. It's enough to make me want to pray.

Posted by David Keen at Wednesday, 6 February 2013 at 4:25pm GMT

Well I know what colour I was asked to wear. But can't be bothered with tat wars.

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Wednesday, 6 February 2013 at 5:31pm GMT

Probably worth mentioning that St Mary le Bow was the chief church of the old deanery of the Arches - that is, the peculiar jurisdiction that encompassed thirteen parishes within the City of London, of which only four remain (St Mary le Bow, St Michael Paternoster Royal, St Vedast alias Foster and St Mary Aldermary - although many of the fittings of All Hallows Lombard Street are now at All Hallows Twickenham, and a couple of fittings of St Dionis Backchurch are now at St Dionis Parsons Green). Whilst almost all peculiar jurisdictions were abolished in 1845, it would have been fitting for ceremony to have taken place in a church that had formed part of the direct jurisdiction of the archishops, and of which they remain patrons (shared with the Grocers). However, it was also fitting to have had it at St Paul's.

Posted by J Drever at Wednesday, 6 February 2013 at 9:07pm GMT

Chimeres - red, black, blue or gold - are hardly at the top of most Anglican's agenda at this moment in the history of the Church of England.

Much more important is the reality of whether, or not, the new ABC is going to tackle the endemic climate of homophobia and misogyny in the Church

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Wednesday, 6 February 2013 at 10:41pm GMT

Richard,I gather Chaplains to the King/Queen wear red [crimson? scarlet? what's the difference, please?]

This is why the Pannett Art Gallery at Whitby boasts a portrait of a former Marquis of Normanby in Holy Orders and Royal Chaplain looking for all the world like a renaissance Cardinal

Posted by Peter Michael Thornber at Wednesday, 6 February 2013 at 11:20pm GMT

@Peter Michael Thorber: I am not certain that Normanby was ever a chaplain in ordinary per se (I would need to check in back numbers of Whitacker's Almanack, but his entry in Who Was Who makes no mention of him ever holding that post). However, he was entitled to wear a red cassock on account of his being a canon of Windsor, as he was from 1891 to 1907. Of course the distinction is a fine one.

Posted by Froghole at Thursday, 7 February 2013 at 2:17am GMT

The Bishop of Willesden states that he "can't be bothered with tat wars" but it would seem that colour still holds some importance and significance for His Lordship. I note that the bishop who once famously dyed his hair purple still favours the imperial purple episcopal shirt rather than the more humble black as favoured by the two most recent Cantuars.
Father Ron - of even greater importance than the new ABC's views on human sexuality - which so diverted and dominated Rowan's archiepiscopate - must be the Gospel call to evangelise. Wouldn't it be good if Justin got down from his bookshelf and dusted off William Temple's 1945 report "Towards the Conversion of England"? We certainly don't want a repeat of Archbishop Carey's failed "Decade of Evangelism - nor Archbishop Coggan's doomed "Call to the Nation" but it is now only two years until the diamond anniversary of the publication of Archbishop Temple's inspired report - that surely must be +Justin Cantuar's top priority

Posted by Father David at Thursday, 7 February 2013 at 6:55am GMT

In response to Father David; I'm sure that, given his Evangelical provenance - with HTB and the Alpha Scheme - Archbishop Justin will do his best to evangelise his diocese and, hopefully, assist in the propagation of the Gospel - so that it will be Good News to all - irrespective of race, ethnic background, colour, gender or sexual-orientation.
This is my prayer for his ministry.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 7 February 2013 at 10:35am GMT

Oh, yes. I remember Coggan's grey face on the telly talking about that!

But for the sake of accuracy, wasn't the Decade of Evangelism a legacy of Lambeth 1988?

Posted by Martin Reynolds at Thursday, 7 February 2013 at 11:50am GMT
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