(ANS) Archbishop of Canterbury speaks 'in tongues'

Justin Welby, the 57-year old former oil executive who quit the world of high finance in 1992 to become a priest, was enthroned in March as the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury. And now the spiritual leader of the world’s 77 million Anglicans, has revealed that he speaks “in tongues”.

During an interview with Charles Moore of The Daily Telegraph at Lambeth Palace, London, he was asked by Moore that since he was an evangelical, could he speak “in tongues” which the journalist said is the “charismatic” spiritual gift recorded in the New Testament.

Moore said that Welby answered “Oh yes”, as if he had been asked if he plays tennis.

“It’s just a routine part of spiritual discipline – you choose to speak and you speak a language that you don’t know. It just comes,” the Archbishop said.

Read it all.


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Pastoral Theology, Theology, Theology: Scripture

4 comments on “(ANS) Archbishop of Canterbury speaks 'in tongues'

  1. drjoan says:

    Did the Archbishop REALLY say it is absolutely not necessary for a true Christian to have a conversion experience?

  2. Katherine says:

    drjoan, is it necessary? I rejoice that some who do not believe do have conversion experiences, but there are many who were raised in Christian families and never [i]didn’t[/i] know Jesus, and many whose faith grew gradually and cannot be traced to a single conversion moment.

  3. Charles52 says:

    Might the archbishop be saying that specific psychological events are not conversion. Although conversion might entail a psychologicalemotional experience, the affirmation of Jesus as the son of God, Crucified and Risen, and trust in Him is conversion.

  4. New Reformation Advocate says:

    I agree with #2 and 3. I’m inclined to take ++Welby’s statement in the most positive light, since he has been a consistent, longtime supporter of the Alpha Course which is thoroughly evangelistic. I guess it all depends, drjoan, on what you understand conversion in this context to mean. Thus, he needn’t be denying that commitment to Christ is necessary, or suggesting that one can be a Christian without becoming a new creature in Christ, etc. Rather, as Katherine and Charles have pointed out, people can be raised in strongly Christian homes and never experience a definite turning point where they suddenly committed themselves to Christ and accepted the gospel for the first time.

    My wife is one of those people. Her parents were missionaries (with Wycliffe Bible Translators), and she sincerely claims to have loved Jesus and believed the gospel her whole life. OTOH, later this month I’ll be celebrating the 44th aniversary of my conversion, which took place on the evening of Aug. 17th, 1969, when I passed from death to life. My guess is that since ++Welby’s evangelical credentials and general orientation aren’t in doubt, he was simply trying to show that he isn’t narrow in his understanding of how people become committed Christians; he has broken out of the revivalist mentality,

    And reverting to the headline here, as a charismatic (“3-D”) Anglican, I enthusiastically welcome ++Welby’s frank admission that he prays in tongues without making a big deal out of it. That’s refreshingly candid of him. Of course, given his strong connection and roots in the mother church of Alpha, Holy Trinity, Brompton (alias HTB), it’s not surprise to those of us who’ve participated in and promoted the Alpha Course, which fosters the use of the charismata (such as praying in tongues and especially healing).

    I believe that ++Welby is probably only the second ABoC to admit to speaking in tongues as part of his private prayer life. The other was George Carey, although he seemed more reticent to talk about it.

    FWIW, this prominent interview in the secular press will only tend to confirm the suspicion of liberals in the CoE that ++Welby is, in the sarcastic and disparaging sneer of some hardcore liberals, “HTB+.”

    David Handy+