A day of welcome

Today is the first day of the 15th Lambeth Conference, 2022.

Bishops and spouses from around the world have arrived in Canterbury. Today's activities combine an official welcome session to the conference, and time for delegates to meet with other guests.

My dear sisters and brothers in Christ,

It is a source of great joy that you have journeyed from around the Anglican Communion to be part of this historic occasion in Canterbury. Many of you have also taken part in online meetings during 2021-22, as part of our prayers and preparations for the event. Thank you for your fellowship and time.

Two years ago, we could hardly have believed the course of world events that was about to unfold with the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. This, along with the ongoing challenges like the climate emergency, war and conflict in many countries and the huge inequalities of our world, continue to have a deep impact on us all.

As we gather for the fifteenth Lambeth Conference, the privilege and responsibility of meeting feels even more significant.

The business of this conference is to discern the Holy Spirit’s directing in what it means to be ‘God’s Church for God’s World’, as we seek to ‘walk, listen and witness together.’

We are living at a time where there is much to fragment and divide the world – but Christ calls his Church to be one in witness and in worship so that Jesus is presented to the world.

That is why the conference’s Biblical focus on the book of 1 Peter is so important.

Peter’s first Epistle addressed a church at a period of history facing many challenges. It is a book that explores themes of suffering, despair, joy, exile and alienation – the hope of Christ and the call to the Church in the midst of these.

Then and now – 1 Peter calls the church beyond the power dynamics of the world, to live holy lives rooted in the servanthood of Christ.

As we embark upon our journey together in 2022, we pray for God’s Holy Spirit to guide us, as we seek God’s will for the global witness of the Anglican Communion in the decade ahead.

The Most Reverend and Right Honourable Justin Welby
The Archbishop of Canterbury

Words from 1 Peter

Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaining. Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.

1 Peter 4: 8-10