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World News

Next Archbishop of Wales elected

by Donna Birrell

The Right Reverend Andy John who has served as the Bishop of Bangor for the past 13 years, has been chosen as the 14th Archbishop of Wales.

He succeeds Bishop John Davies who retired in May after four years as the leader of the Church in Wales.

Archbishop-elect  Andy secured a two-thirds majority vote from members of the Electoral College on the first day of its meeting at Holy Trinity Church, Llandrindod Wells.  The election was immediately confirmed by the five other diocesan bishops and announced by the Provincial Secretary of the Church in Wales, Simon Lloyd. 

Bishop Andy will be enthroned at St. Deiniol’s Cathedral, Bangor, in due course and as Archbishop he will continue to serve as Bishop of Bangor.

He said: “As we look forward to the future, I’m very conscious that we’re not yet out of those restrictions that have inhibited our lives for so long. We face many challenges, but we do so not alone -we do so with God’s grace and with one another, because together we are so much stronger, so much better, and I’m confident that the Church in Wales will be able to respond with energy, with vision and with vigour to all the challenges which lie ahead of us.

“It’s my enormous privilege to serve that Church to that end.”

The Archdeacon of Meirionnydd, Andrew Jones, welcomed the news on behalf of the Diocese.

“On behalf of the Diocese of Bangor, I want to congratulate Bishop Andy on his election as the next Archbishop of Wales. His leadership in the Diocese of Bangor since 2009 has been excellent and very much appreciated. He has steered the diocese through uncharted times and has done it with care, compassion and clarity.

“This is a great privilege for us as a Diocese and he becomes the third Bishop of Bangor to be the Archbishop of Wales in the last century - GO Williams in the late 70s/80s and Charles Green in the 30s. Both left a significant mark on the history of our Church and I am certain that Bishop Andy will equally be an outstanding Archbishop, who will lead our Church strategically, diligently and pastorally.

“As a Diocese we pray for Bishop Andy and his family and that he will be blessed in this new ministry and leadership.”

Archbishop Andy grew up in Aberystwyth and graduated in Law at the University of Wales, Cardiff, in 1986 and in Theology at the University of Nottingham in 1988. He was ordained as a deacon in 1989 and as priest in the Diocese of St Davids in 1990 and served all his ordained ministry until his election as Bishop of Bangor within that Diocese in 2008. He has also served as Archdeacon of Cardigan.

As Bishop of Bangor, Andy holds the portfolio responsibilities for evangelism, church growth, the Welsh language (he speaks Welsh) and stewardship. He served on the St Padarn’s Council until June 2017.

Archbishop Andy enjoys running, staying reasonably fit, playing the saxophone and the guitar. He is married to Naomi and has four grown-up children from his first marriage.


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