Andy Walton looks at whether there is a "Religious Right" emerging in Britain
Archbishop of Canterbury: who'll get the impossible job?
28th May 2012
The role of Archbishop of Canterbury is, by common consent, a poisoned chalice. The challenge is to balance the various dogmatic factions within the Church of England at the same time as holding together the disparate worldwide Anglican Communion of 80 million souls. But, as a titular leader, the occupant of Lambeth Palace has no means of imposing his will. Unlike the Pope, with his formal teaching authority, the archbishop has to rely on persuasion and goodwill and that, as recent incumbents have found to their frustration, only gets you so far.
The thanklessness of the task extends to the process now under way for choosing the 105th archbishop to succeed Dr Rowan Williams when he retires in December. Because of long-standing divisions within the Church over such issues as gay marriage and women bishops, whichever candidate’s name emerges this autumn, it is guaranteed to offend a good proportion of Anglicans.
Peter Stanford | Daily Telegraph
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