Pope Francis meets with Justin Welby Archbishop of Canterbury

5 Oct 2021

The Most Reverend and Right Honourable Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, met with His Holiness Pope Francis in a private audience this morning, 5 October 2021. Archbishop Welby had a private conversation with Pope Francis before introducing members of his delegation: Right Reverend Ian Ernest, Director of the Anglican Centre in Rome; Right Reverend David Hamid, Suffragan Bishop of Europe; Right Reverend Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich; Reverend Dr William Adam, Anglican Communion Office Deputy Secretary General; and Mr David Porter, Lambeth Palace Chief of Staff. Most Reverend Brian Farrell, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and Reverend Father Anthony Currer, PCPCU staff member responsible for relations with Anglicans, also attended the meeting.

Archbishop was in Rome for the signing of the joint appeal issued at the “Faith and Science: Towards COP26” meeting held in the Vatican on 4 October, the feast of St Francis. In his intervention the Archbishop appealed for a greener economy founded on renewable energy, new financial systems of taxation and trade to enable and sustain this, and for a just partnership between the global north and the global south. He concluded his remarks saying, “I have run out of time. The world just about has enough time to get this right.” The event was organized jointly by the Embassies of Italy and the United Kingdom to the Holy See and the Vatican’s Secretariat of State. The Archbishop also participated in an afternoon symposium “The Appeal in Practice: Inspiring Action” at the Italian embassy to the Holy See, Villa Borromeo.

As a prelude to the joint appeal, Archbishop Welby, together with the Holy Father and the Ecumenical Patriarch, had signed in September 2021 a “Joint Message for the Protection of Creation” stressing the importance of cooperation and sustainability over short-term advantages as the essential aspects of the response of humanity to the threat of climate change and environmental degradation.

During his meeting with Pope Francis, Archbishop Welby’s gift to the pope was a donation to the charity Bees Abroad which seeks to relieve poverty by training women in beekeeping, predominantly in Africa.


Photo © Servizio Fotografico | Vatican Media