Letter: Archbishop offers a lesson in authority

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Sir: Andrew Brown's piece on the Archbishop of Canterbury ('Trouble for that nice Dr Carey', 9 April) has a measured calmness that must be welcome in the midst of the fashionable pastime of Archbishop-

bashing. We write to express a belief that wherever Archbishop Carey is encountered and heard in the parishes of the Church of England an entirely different picture emerges.

At a recent teaching mission in South Kent, many hundreds of people had the opportunity to meet and hear the Archbishop at first hand. They encountered a man who affirmed and encouraged his people, spoke the Christian gospel in ways that were understood, and taught with authority.

Personal encounter with the man produced an almost universal verdict: 'We have been given distortions and misrepresentations in our newspapers. In reality, he is quite different. Far from being disappointed, this is a Church leader we affirm.'

The Archbishop of Canterbury is about to embark on a similar teaching mission in mid-Kent. We firmly believe that, church-goer or not, many people will again be given an opportunity to meet an Archbishop who is not afraid to make himself vulnerable and get out among his people; a man who is, most emphatically, 'up to the job'.

Yours faithfully,

The Rev ALAN DUKE, The Rev GEOFFREY SIDAWAY, The Rev Canon FRANCIS TURNER, The Rev NICHOLAS BURY, The Rev PETER BOWERS, The Rev COLIN PREECE, The Rev Canon REG HUMPHRISS, The Rev JOHN RECORD, The Rev MICHAEL STEPHENS, The Rev DAVID MATTHIAE, The Rev JOHN HEWES, The Rev Canon JONATHAN GLEDHILL (nine rural deans and other clergy from the Diocese of Canterbury).

Canterbury,

Kent

11 April

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