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Don’t get depressed, Dr Williams tells Church of England

08 July 2012

THE Archbishop of Canterbury said this morning that many in the Church were feeling "profoundly frustrated" with its "structures".

In a sermon preached at York Minster, Dr Williams said that people were feeling "frustrated with each other", "profoundly frustrated with the bishops", and "with the structures of the Church, and are feeling that the way in which we do our business is, at the moment, preventing us from doing what we actually want to do as a Church."

Frustration, Dr Williams said, "leads to anger and indignation. And, of course, for well-brought-up Christians, anger and indignation are normally internalised as depression. And the last thing our society or our world needs is a depressed Church. That is something which I trust we shall bear in mind and heart in the days ahead . . .

"Instead of simply allowing our frustration to turn inwards into anger and unhappiness, let us at least remember that we are brought up against the reality of a humanity - rich, mysterious, exciting, enduring, and worth the very life of the Son of God himself. 'My grace is enough.'" Dr Williams said that "there is no power that can force the human heart. . . we cannot force our neighbours to be with us any more than God can force his creation to be with him."

Dr Williams said that people might not let Christ "do what he really wants, but Christ - subtle and secret as ever - slips behind our defences and, just wryly smiling, touches a few people into life, perhaps whispering to them 'Get on with it.' With that wry smile before us, perhaps we can remember that we as a Church may yet be a place where he lays his hand and heals."

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