From the Worldwide Faith News archives

ACNS3327 Enthronement of Rowan Williams as the 104th Archbishop

From "Anglican Communion News Service" <>
Date Thu, 27 Feb 2003 16:33:02 -0000

ACNS 3327      |     ACNS SPECIAL REPORT     |	   27 FEBRUARY 2003

Enthronement of Rowan Williams as the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury

In a ceremony that included everything from robust Welsh hymns to colourful
dance, thunderous applause and pageantry, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the
Most Revd Rowan Douglas Williams, was enthroned today following ancient
custom in Canterbury Cathedral, the Mother Church of the Anglican Communion.
The Dean of Canterbury, the Very Revd Robert Willis, led the Archbishop by
the hand to his chair. Handing the Archbishop the Pastoral Staff, the Dean

"I give you this Pastoral Staff, a symbol of your investment with the
Spiritualities of the See of Canterbury."

The Bishop of Dover then gave this blessing:

"May Christ the Good Shepherd so uphold and sustain you that you may lead
with courage and guide with love those committed to your charge."

Archbishop Rowan took his seat as the 104th Archbishop, in succession to St
Augustine. The ceremony was attended by many representatives of other
churches and other faiths. Brother Primates of the Anglican Communion were
present, along with Bishops of the Church of England and the readers and
clergy of the Diocese of Canterbury. The Archbishop of York, the Most Revd
David Hope, the Bishop of London and the Senior Anglican Primate Robin
Eames, Archbishop of Armagh, had unique roles in the service, as did the
Bishop of Dover, the Rt Revd Stephen Venner, the bishop ministering to the
diocese on a day to day basis from Canterbury. The Bishop of Maidstone and
the Archdeacons were also present.

In place of the sounding of fanfares, the response to the act of
enthronement was the dancing accompanying the singing, "Amen. Siakudumisa."
The Archbishop took the corporal oath on the Canterbury gospels book.

During the exchange of the peace, Archbishop Rowan was joined by his wife,
Jane, in greeting dozens of people seated in the area behind the high altar.
Approximately 600 people from the Church in Wales made the journey to
Canterbury to see their own Archbishop take on this new role for the
worldwide church.

The day also marked the Feast of George Herbert, priest and poet, and the
choir of St Woolo's Cathedral sang a setting of Come my Way to music by John
Sanders. One of Archbishop William's own poems was used during the
Pennillion, in a setting for Soprano and Harp.

The Chairman of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) joined with Sylvia
Scarf, of the Church in Wales, and the Revd Andrew Burnham in offering the
prayers and intercessions from the Compass Rose symbol in the nave. The Revd
Canon John L. Peterson and the Revd Canon Hermann Browne led the procession
of the Anglican Primates and other dignitaries into the Cathedral. Also in
attendance were members of the ACC Standing Committee and Finance Committee.
Officers of the Compass Rose Society also were on hand for the historic

The design of the Cathedral dictates creative liturgical planning. Under the
direction of the Revd Kevin Goss, Precentor of Canterbury, the service took
place both in the Nave and in the Quire with the Archbishop giving a
blessing from the St Augustine's chair as well as the Nave altar.

The renowned choir of men and boys of the Cathedral sang the church's great
hymn of praise, Te Deum Laudamus, to a setting by Benjamin Britten. The
Archbishop left St Augustine's throne as the congregation sang:

Guide me, O thou great Redeemer,
Pilgrim through this barren land;
I am weak, but thou art mighty;
Hold me with thy powerful hand.

Members of the government were present as was His Royal Highness, the Prince
of Wales. Security was tight and there has been a significant police
presence in the Precincts of the Cathedral in recent weeks.

Dr Williams legally became the Archbishop of Canterbury at the Confirmation
of Election ceremony in St Paul's Cathedral on Monday 2 December 2002,
today's Enthronement service was his formal reception and a celebration of
the start of his new ministry.

The sermon will be available in full on the Anglican Communion web site
shortly after the service.


For details about the 27th February broadcast, webcast and video
of the Enthronement of the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury, the
Most Revd Rowan D Williams, visit these web sites:

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