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ENGLAND: Archbishop of Canterbury to meet with Pope Benedict XVI


Lambeth Palace photo
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams   (Lambeth Palace photo)

[Episcopal News Service]  The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, and Pope Benedict XVI will have their first official meeting later this month. The two met briefly following the Pope's Inauguration Mass in 2005.

The private Papal Audience on Thursday, November 23, will be the centerpiece of Williams' visit to Rome, which runs November 21-26. The visit coincides with the 40th anniversary of the historic meeting between Pope Paul VI and Archbishop Michael Ramsey in 1966.

In addition to a number of private meetings in the Vatican, Williams will also take part in the celebrations marking 40 years since the founding of the Anglican Centre in Rome in 1966. Williams will lead worship for Rome's Anglican congregations and deliver two keynote lectures - 'St Benedict and the Future of Europe' and 'Secularity, Freedom and Faith' - and meet with the Sant' Egidio Community.

Williams will be accompanied by his wife, Jane Williams. The delegation will also include Archbishop Peter Carnley, co-chair of the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC); Bishop David Beetge, co-chair of the International Anglican Roman Catholic Commission on Unity and Mission (IARCCUM); and Bishop John Flack, the Archbishop's Representative to the Holy See.

As on previous visits to the Vatican, Williams will be wearing the Episcopal ring which was presented by Pope Paul VI to Archbishop Michael Ramsey at their historic meeting in 1966.