By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird
The excitement about ++Justin Welby’s appointment has been remarkable. Biblical Anglicans around the world have welcomed his appointment with open arms. Perhaps the fact that Archbishop Welby has visited Africa sixty times has helped endear the Global South Anglicans who have often felt left out in the cold. It has been said that in the Anglican world, the Africans pray, the Americans pay and the British set the rules. Because of the enormous financial clout of the American Episcopalians, they have openly flaunted the global Anglican standards on biblical marriage. Will Archbishop Welby have what it takes to bring the errant Episcopalians back into biblical Anglicanism?
John McManus writing for BBC News said, “Justin Welby’s appearance was characterized by one very important quality – his steeliness.” It will take a man of steel to bring North American Anglicans to biblical transformation. ++Welby has the reputation of being a consummate negotiator, who deeply listens while holding clear principles. Charles Moore of The Telegraph says that Justin Welby can provide the tough love that has been so sadly lacking.
Perhaps ++Welby’s time as an oil industry executive will prove useful in his bringing order out of the Anglican moral chaos. Perhaps ++Welby’s involvement in Holy Trinity Brompton with its world-famous Alpha Course will help him birth an Anglican Church that is both vibrant and faithful. Anglican leaders that I trust are telling me that we need to give ++Welby the benefit of the doubt. My prayer is that
Archbishop Justin Welby will prove to be a spiritual man of steel who can give new hope to the Anglican Communion.
The Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, Rector
BSW, MDiv, DMin
-an article for the Light Magazine
-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada
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