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Dr Will Adam to leave Anglican Communion post for Canterbury archdeaconry

21 March 2022

Neil Vigers/ACO

The Revd Dr Will Adam, the next Archdeacon of Canterbury

The Revd Dr Will Adam, the next Archdeacon of Canterbury

THE Anglican Communion’s Deputy Secretary General, the Revd Dr Will Adam, is to be the next Archdeacon of Canterbury, it was announced on Monday.

The Archdeacon not only carries out administrative duties in the diocese, but traditionally represents the Archbishop of Canterbury at the enthronement or installation of new diocesan bishops in the Southern Province, reading the Archbishop’s mandate and leading the new bishop to his or her throne.

Dr Adam will also be a Residentiary Canon of Canterbury Cathedral, and succeeds the Very Revd Jo Kelly-Moore, who was appointed Dean of St Albans last year (News, 10 September 2021).

Dr Adam has been in his current post at the Anglican Communion Office (ACO) since last year (News, 19 February 2021), after working part-time from 2019 as Director of Unity, Faith, and Order. He has responsibility for the ecumenical and theological work of the Anglican Communion. He was the Ecumenical Adviser at Lambeth Palace from 2017 to 2021.

Dr Adam read theology at Manchester University, trained for the priesthood at Westcott House, Cambridge, and the Ecumenical Institute of the World Council of Churches, Geneva, and later studied for a master’s degree and a doctorate in canon law at Cardiff Law School.

He was ordained deacon in 1994 and served until 2017 in the dioceses of Oxford, Ely, and London. It was during his time as an assistant curate in Oxford diocese that he appeared in a TV advertisement for a Ford Escort, with the sales line “Will Adam has married 14 women since he got his. . . What do you do in yours?”

Since 2017, he has been an honorary assistant priest in a rural parish in West Sussex.

The Bishop of Dover, the Rt Revd Rose Hudson-Wilkin, said on Monday: “I am looking forward enormously to Will joining the senior staff team of our diocese. He comes to us with a breadth of experience and an openness and willingness to learn more — so that together as the Body of Christ we may continue the journey towards becoming a flourishing community.”

Dr Adam said that it was an honour to be invited to take up the post. “Canterbury is a place very close to my heart — as it has been for pilgrims from around the world for centuries,” he said. “I’m excited by the opportunities for mission and ministry in Canterbury diocese and the Cathedral as they work towards building a flourishing and sustainable future for their communities. I can’t wait to get to know the parishes, churches, and communities of the archdeaconry as we work together in God’s service.”

It was also announced this week that a second senior leader in the Anglican Communion Office would be leaving for a new post. The Director for Administration and Logistics, Stephanie Taylor, has been appointed Director of Governance at the Isle of Wight College, a further- and higher-education institution. She will also volunteer with a local NHS hospital-chaplaincy team.

Ms Taylor said that it had been “the greatest honour” to serve the Anglican Communion for the past eight years. “After this period of pandemic when we have all experienced a renewed sense of the importance of our local communities, it will now be a privilege to serve my local community in two beloved institutions so instrumental to the education and health of the people of my island home.”

The Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, the Rt Revd Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon, praised Ms Taylor for her “significant, but largely hidden, ministry” within the Communion and wished her well in her new post.

Dr Iodwu-Fearon said of Dr Adam: “He comes with long experience as a parish priest and pastor which has been informed by his work in the world Church. We will miss him at the Anglican Communion Office, but congratulate Will and the Cathedral and diocese of Canterbury on this news.”

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