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Archbishop Justin Welby visits Nazareth

Published: May 17 Wed, 2017

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NAZARETH – The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Justin Welby, visited the Holy Land and met with the Palestinian and Israeli Presidents and the King of Jordan. He invited the various religious leaders to an ecumenical meeting in Nazareth, an opportunity for him to revisit the problems of peace in the Middle East.

At the beginning of May, the Archbishop of Canterbury and Primate of the Anglican Communion, Dr. Justin Welby, accompanied by two other bishops, made official visits to the different countries of the Holy Land. In Jordan, he met with King Abdullah and visited several refugee camps. In Israel, he met with the Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and with all the religious leaders of the country in the residence of the British ambassador in Ramat Gan. In Palestine, he met the Palestinian president Mohmoud Abbas and went to Gaza for a humanitarian visit.  At every visit, he gave tribute to the Holy Places, led animated liturgies and ecumenical meetings of the Anglican communities.

One of these ecumenical meetings took place in Nazareth on May 6. The Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem and the Holy Land, Archbishop Suheil Dawani, invited all the religious leaders of the local communities and all Anglican pastors in Galilee to a meeting and dinner in honor of Archbishop Welby at the St. Margaret Hostel in Nazareth, among them, the Patriarchal Vicar in Israel Bishop Marcuzzo and Metropolitan Kyriakos of the Orthodox Church in Nazareth.

The fraternal and open meeting allowed the Archbishop to listen attentively to every intervention. He spoke about the challenges of the Anglican Communion, the problems of peace in the Middle East and the international coexistence of religions and cultures.  He concluded by sharing his admiration for the work of Pope Francis and his joy of working with him, as an example the recent visit of the Holy Father to the Anglican Church in Rome, the joint declaration that followed and the apostolic journey that they will soon undertake in Sudan.