Anglican Church head to retire
The Archbishop of Canterbury on Friday announced his retirement after ten years of harsh criticisms and celebrations especially surrounding the issue of female and gay ordination.
Dr Rowan Williams, the youngest Archbishop in history, said he never felt comfortable in the Anglican Church’s top job and with the burden that came with it.
“It’s still something of a shock to find myself here, coming to terms with an enormous trust placed in my hands and with the inevitable sense of inadequacy that goes with that,” he said.
The majority of the criticisms against his work have been coming from the more conservative churches in Africa who claim Williams has led the church away from the Bible’s truths when taking the position of Archbishop.
“I'm sure it's right that he returns to academia, because under Archbishop Rowan's tenure the Church has really gone in a most liberal direction,” said member of the General Synod Alison Ruoff.
“Many, many churches have gone away from Bible truth and that’s really to the detriment not only of the Church of England, but also to the detriment of the nation.”
Despite the criticisms Williams is receiving high praise for his work including from the current British Prime Minister David Cameron.
“I completely understand why after a long time in that very important top job he wants to move on,” Cameron said.
“I pay tribute to the service that he's given to the country, to the Church.”
Williams is returning to a life of academia as the head of a college in Cambridge.
It is tipped that the Archbishop of York, Ugandan-born Dr John Sentamu (pictured, right, with Williams), will take over from Williams in the position.
In late January, Sentamu, a vociferous opponent of same-sex marriage, made headlines when he likened Cameron to a “dictator” for supporting plans to alter the UK’s marriage laws.
“I don’t think it is the role of the state to define what marriage is. It is set in tradition and history and you can’t just [change it] overnight, no matter how powerful you are,” Sentamu said.
“We’ve seen dictators do it in different contexts and I don’t want to redefine very clear social structures that have been in existence for a long time and then overnight the state believes it could go in a particular way.”