The Church Commissioners acknowledged on Thursday that their £10.1-billion fund has early links with the transatlantic slave trade. Both the Commissioners and the Archbishop of Canterbury have apologised.
The revelations come after research into Queen Anne’s Bounty, which was established in 1704 to tackle poverty among the clergy through the buying of land (from which the clergy received the income) or through an annuity stream. The Commissioners came into being in 1948 after a merger of the Bounty and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners.
The research was initiated by the Commissioners in 2019 — shortly before the death of George Floyd sparked the Black Lives Matter movement (News, 5 June 2020), and amid an international debate about monuments to people with links to the slave trade (News, 14 May 2021).
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“It is only by facing this painful reality that we can take steps towards genuine healing and reconciliation — the path that Jesus Christ calls us to walk. This is a moment for lament, repentance, and restorative action.” @JustinWelbyhttps://t.co/9fzpjko1lw
— Church Times (@ChurchTimes) June 17, 2022