Liverpool links for new Archbishop

Share Button

Justin Welby was appointed the new Archbishop of Canterbury on Friday ©mariaprice31/creativecommons/Flickr

The former Dean of Liverpool’s Anglican Cathedral has been appointed into the highest position in the Church of England after being named the new Archbishop of Canterbury.

Justin Welby, who held the post at Liverpool Cathedral from 2007-2011, and is the current Bishop of Durham said he was privileged to have been chosen. He said: “To be nominated to this post is both astonishing and exciting. It is something I never expected, and the last few weeks have been a very strange experience.”

The Prime Minister first announced that Reverend Welby will become the new Archbishop on the social networking site Twitter writing: “Downing Street is pleased to announce the appointment of Justin Welby as the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury”.

The Bishop also took to Twitter to express his joy at the news by light-heartedly tweeting: “Thought in the night, those who made money betting on me give it to their local church! I suspect it was less than papers suggest.”

Reports from William Hill, the UK’s largest bookmaker, confirmed that their markets had shown substantial late support for Bishop Welby despite him not being the immediate front runner.

Spokesman for William Hill, Graham Sharpe said: “This is not the first time the church have been involved in a betting coup, I have been industry to see the last three or four Archbishops and we have seen something similar in the past.”

Born in 1956, the married clergyman who fathered six children, studied at the top institutions in the country, Eton and later Trinity College, Cambridge. After university, the 57-year-old took up a post as an oil executive for 11 years but despite his six figure salary, left the company in 1987 deciding to devote his life to God by becoming an Anglican priest.

A supporter of the anointment of female bishops, is seen as a popular figure within the Church of England, which is thought to have 80 million members worldwide.

The new Archbishop of Canterbury will officially replace Dr Rowan Williams in March of 2013 when he is formally ordained.

Additional reporting by Scott Rumsey

About Lauren Kelly, JMU Journalism