Saturday, April 09, 2016

Justin Welby The Archbishop of Canterbury - Father Jorge Bergoglio SJ Pope Francis

The facts that Justin Welby became Archbishop of Canterbury at much the same time as  the Argentinian  Father Jorge Bergoglio SJ  became  Pope Francis,  that they seem to be men for the ordinary people and get on well with each other, may be the cause of  news about them both invariably being of interest.

This week has brought the news that Pope Francis has published in his "Joy of Love" the idea that local priests and bishops should take on much more responsibility for interpreting the ideals of the Church in the light of individual human fragilities and weaknesses so that for example,  local  ways of life and   local consequential frailties of individuals,  should be  considered by local priests and bishops rather than the almost invariable exclusion of divorced catholics from Holy Communion by central dictat.

Almost as the ink was drying on this papal publication, news emerged about the fact that The Archbishop of Canterbury previously  unbeknown even to him, was the son of the private secretary to the late Winston Churchill,  rather than of  (Scotch whisky salesman) Gavin Welby.

I do not usually buy the Daily Telegraph but its report of the history of the Archbishop of Canterbury's background, makes for an interesting read see: Archbishop of Canterbury  particularly as most other UK national daily newspapers are still  reporting on their front pages yards of tedious material about whether David Cameron's late fathers and his own apparently legitimate  tax affairs, should still after days of such reports, be regarded as being front page news.

The Archbishop of Canterbury's  comments on the revelation about his biological  paternity does him a great credit. He is reported as saying:

"I know that I find who I am in Jesus Christ, not in genetics, and my identity in him never changes."

In his statement to the Daily Telegraph  after expressing astonishment (and presumably feeling as anyone would, a sense of shock) he mentions that both his mother Jane Williams and father Gavin Welby were alcoholics with Gavin sadly dying from that condition in 1977. He also mentions the huge love and support from friends and family over the years and the wonderful recovery of his mother from her condition.

Remarkable and holy men of completely different family backgrounds and nationalities both now working for the good of all. Rays of light in a world beset with so many human problems.

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