Friday, March 16, 2012

Archbishop of Canterbury to Step Down

++Rowan Williams, the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, has announced that he will be stepping down from his position at the end of December.  In its place, he has accepted the position of Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, effective January 2013. 

++Rowan has served as Archbishop of Canterbury since 2002.  The Archbishop of Canterbury serves, first of all, as the bishop of the Diocese of Canterbury.  He is also the Primate of All England.  He is seen as a "metropolitan" - the first among bishops of the region.  He as authority/jurisdiction in the 30 dioceses of his province.  (The Archbishop of York has the same authority/jurisdiction in the 14 dioceses of his province.)  And, the Archbishop of Canterbury became the original sign of unity among the bishops and churches of the Anglican Communion (though he has no formal authority in this role, except in his invitations to Lambeth, he is, nevertheless, seen as a spokesperson and sign of unity for the Communion).

It will now be up to the Queen, who is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England, to appoint the next Archbishop of Canterbury. 

More information about the Archbishop and his resignation can be found on the Archbishop's website, here.

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