THE Archbishop of Canterbury visited Barbados, Guatemala, and
Mexico this week, as part of an ambitious plan to visit every
Anglican Primate during his first 18 months in office.
Archbishop Welby flew to Barbados on Thursday of last week with
his wife, Caroline, for a two-day visit, at the invitation of the
Archbishop of the Church of the Province of the West Indies and
Bishop of Barbados, Dr John Holder. The Archbishop met the Prime
Minister of Barbados, Freundel Stuart, and the Governor General,
Elliott Belgrave, and clergy from across the diocese.
On Friday, the Archbishop preached at Christ Church, Barbados.
He said: "In this part of the world there is a history of the
Church in the past having acted in oppression. We cannot forget
that, in every age and every place, the Church is human, and humans
make terrible mistakes and do terrible wrongs. But it is still the
family of God."
On Saturday, the Archbishop and Mrs Welby travelled to Guatemala
for another two-day visit, at the invitation of the Archbishop of
the Anglican Church of the Central American Region and Bishop of
Guatemala, the Most Revd Armando Guerra Soria.
Preaching at St James's Cathedral, Guatemala City, on Sunday,
Archbishop Welby said: "We must learn ways of peace, as Anglicans
always have, through scripture, tradition, and reason, reflecting
together and alone on the Bible, on what we have inherited, and on
the world around. They are held in tension, but unless the tensions
we face are covered in prayer, the tensions will destroy the
Speaking on Monday, Archbishop Welby said that he prayed that
the Church in Guatemala "may continue to be an agent of God's
healing and reconciliation for the whole country."
Archbishop and Mrs Welby flew to Mexico on Tuesday morning for a
two-day visit, at the invitation of the Archbishop of Mexico, the
Most Revd Francisco Moreno. It was the first time that
a serving Archbishop of Canterbury had visited Mexico, Lambeth
During the visit, Archbishop Welby preached at a
celebration of the Eucharist in the city of Monterrey, and visited
the Community of St Jude in Juarez in the State of Nuevo
Archbishop Welby said in a statement that the Anglican
Church in Mexico worked with "some of those most
marginalised by poverty and insecurity". He wished to express
"special appreciation of the witness to Jesus Christ of La Iglesia
Anglicana de Mexico, and of its participation in the witness of the
Anglican Communion as a whole on global challenges such as food
security, sustainable development, and climate
Archbishop and Mrs Welby were due to return to London on
Ed Thornton writes: Archbishop Welby has
committed himself to visiting every Primate in the Anglican
Communion during his first 18 months in office. Lambeth Palace said
that the purpose of the visits was "to get to know each of them in
their context - personally as well as professionally - in the hope
that friendship and mutual understanding may follow. Such
relationships are the essential basis for growing collaboration and
trust at a wider level across the Communion."
The visits to Primates have not
replaced official visits: official provincial visits will resume in
But the Archbishop is keen to
meet Primates and bishops in a more informal setting, travelling
without an entourage and staying as a private guest. This enables
him, Lambeth Palace said, "to reach a greater number of people and
places than would otherwise be possible, not least those that might
be perceived as isolated or remote".
THE "crisis" in the Anglican Communion has "deepened",
and will not go away because there is a new Archbishop of
Canterbury, the Archbishop of Uganda, the Most Revd Stanley Ntagali
said on Wednesday, writes Ed Thornton.
In a statement to supporters of the Fellowship of
Confessing Anglicans (FCA) and GAFCON, which meets for the second
time in Nairobi between 21 and 26 October, Archbishop Ntagali said
that the consecration of the Rt Revd Gene Robinson as Bishop of New
Hampshire ten years ago (News, 7 November 2003) "threw the entire
global Anglican Communion into chaos".
The Archbishop continued: "We have a new Archbishop of
Canterbury who is born again and has a testimony. I have personally
met him, and I like him very much. But the problems in the
Communion are still there, and they don't change just because there
is a new global leader. In fact, ten years later, the crisis has
Archbishop Ntagali said that the Church of Uganda would
be sending 200 delegates to GAFCON 2013, which he described as an
"important revival meeting. . .
"GAFCON is to the Anglican Communion as the East African
Revival was to the Church in Uganda. At first it was small revival
fellowships meeting outside the Church structures and Church
services. But, as the revival spread, it became mainstream in the
Church. Now, most of the Church of Uganda is led by clergy and
bishops shaped by the East African Revival.
"In the same way, we are going to GAFCON 2 in Nairobi to
see that the biblical faith of GAFCON spreads like revival
throughout the whole Anglican Communion; so that global Anglicanism
is brought back to its biblical and evangelistic
Last month, the Archbishop of Kenya, Dr Eliud Wabukala,
chairman of the GAFCON Primates' Council, said that the C of E was
"advancing down the same path" as the Episcopal Church in the
United States and the Anglican Church of Canada (News, 19 July). He made the comments after the
Archbishops of Canterbury and York spoke in support of civil