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This is an archived website containing material relating to Dr Rowan Williams’ time as Archbishop of Canterbury, which ended on 31st December 2012

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Anglican Communion

The Archbishop of Canterbury is the senior bishop of the worldwide Anglican Communion - a first among equals (“primus inter pares”) amongst fellow bishops. 

At the dedication of St Matthew Cathedral, Diocese of Renk, Sudan, February 2006The Anglican Communion is the third largest international denomination, after the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church. It has over 80 million members, spread across 38 Provinces in 164 countries. Each of these Provinces is autonomous, with its own system of governance and senior archbishop or bishop ("Primate"). The Communion is not held together by a formal constitution or international church law, but rather by a shared heritage and what are termed "bonds of affection", by formal "Instruments of Communion" and through the Archbishop of Canterbury acting as a unique focus of unity. This sense of common identity has been nourished over many years by direct encounter and companion relationships at many levels. The Archbishop of Canterbury plays a leading role in nurturing the interdependent life of the Communion by visiting Provinces, convening meetings, facilitating initiatives, contributing to theological reflection and exercising a pivotal role within the Instruments of Communion.

See also: The Archbishop in the Anglican Communion: An Historical Note

Recent items relating to Anglican Communion are shown below:

November 2011

Archbishop's Advent letter to Anglican Primates
30 November 2011
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, has sent the following Advent letter to the Primates…

October 2011

Archbishop meets President Michael Sata of Zambia
11 October 2011
During a call on the President, the Archbishop congratulated HE Michael Sata on his recent election victory…

Archbishop of Canterbury arrives in Zambia
11 October 2011
Archbishop Rowan Williams arrived on Tuesday morning in Lusaka, Zambia, for the final stage of his visit…

Archbishops meet with Zimbabwean Prime Minister
10 October 2011
Having met with the Zimbabwean President earlier in the day, the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams…

Archbishops meet with Zimbabwean President
10 October 2011
The Archbishops of Canterbury, Central Africa, Southern Africa and Tanzania issued the following statement…

Visit to St Augustine’s Mission in Manicaland, Zimbabwe
10 October 2011
During their trip to Manicaland, Zimbabwe, the Archbishop of Canterbury and his fellow bishops paid a…

Archbishop travels to Manicaland, Zimbabwe
10 October 2011
During his time in Zimbabwe, Archbishop Rowan Williams visited the Diocese of Manicaland. Manicaland…

Archbishop's sermon to the Anglicans in Zimbabwe
9 October 2011
The Archbishop of Canterbury today preached a sermon to a packed sports stadium in Harare where over…

Archbishop's Malawi sermon – God’s healing and mercy are there for all
8 October 2011
In a special service to mark the 150th anniversary of the Church in Malawi, the Archbishop of Canterbury…

'God is making a difference through our hands' - Archbishop visits community projects in Malawi
7 October 2011
During his visit to Malawi, Archbishop Rowan Williams was able to see some of the inspiring work done…

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