Malkhaz Songulashvili – Tales of Canterbury – 4 – Meeting in the Crypt

Crypt-Canterbury Cathedral
Crypt of Canterbury Cathedral, England

When I saw the purple ticket from Canterbury I read it twice very carefully, thinking of the blue ticket which I had received in Rome. The purple ticket permitted the ticket-holder to enter the precincts of the cathedral and the crypt for robing. Those who were robing and participating in the procession, the purple ticket holders, were asked to be at the crypt one hour and a half before the service started at 2 pm. Before I even entered the crypt in the precincts of the cathedral I bumped into Prince Ghazi of Jordan whom I had met at my college at Oxford a few months earlier at an interfaith conference on love in Muslim, Christian and Jewish traditions. Prof. Paul Fiddes, my doctoral tutor, was the main convener of the conference. Prince Ghazi spoke about love in the Muslim tradition.

“Are you not cold?” asked the prince staring at my bare feet and sandals.

“No, I am used to it.” I gave the standard answer as we made our way to the crypt. Continue reading “Malkhaz Songulashvili – Tales of Canterbury – 4 – Meeting in the Crypt”

Episcopalians to church leaders: “Hold Israel accountable”

Prominent Episcopalians ask church leaders to enact resolution passed by General Convention

New York, January 18, 2013 – Prominent members of The Episcopal Church have written a letter to the church’s Executive Council to be delivered on the day honoring the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., asking that they implement policies already approved by the church’s General Convention. These policies call for an accounting of Israel’s use of foreign aid from the U.S. government, and require that the church’s financial resources not be used to support the infrastructure of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories. The letter calls for “justice” and “truth,” not only seeking a just outcome for the Palestinian people, but asking “why is it that Congress and the White House are unable to see the injustice of the occupation, where Israel is the oppressor, and the Palestinians the oppressed?”

The signers point out that fifteen of The Episcopal Church’s ecumenical partners have already asked the Congress “for accountability of Israel’s use of foreign aid from the U.S. government, including the leadership of the Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist, and United Church of Christ.”

The Episcopal Church has a long history of supporting causes of social import, and has been seeking justice for the Palestinian people for more than three decades. The signers of the letter are an ethnically diverse group of women and men that include laity, priests, and bishops. They are some of the church’s most recognized and seasoned advocates for justice. The letter is supported by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and its signers include a former Presiding Bishop and a former President of the House of Deputies, the dean of the National Cathedral, and several other nationally and internationally known Episcopalians.
The full text of the letter and background information can be downloaded at Continue reading “Episcopalians to church leaders: “Hold Israel accountable””

Several Leaders Will Boycott Anglican Summit in Dublin


Canterbury, England. At least seven of the leaders representing 38 Anglican provinces worldwide will not attend a key meeting in Dublin from 25-30 January. Their absence comes at a time when the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, is under mounting pressure from two wings of the 77 million-member Anglican Communion on the subject of human sexuality.

The Primates’ Meeting, which was established in 1978 and is closed to the public, generally takes place every two years.

Some archbishops have told Williams they will not attend because of the presence of the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, Katharine Jefferts Schori, and because of recent developments in her province, including the recent election of a lesbian bishop, according to a report in the Times of London. Continue reading “Several Leaders Will Boycott Anglican Summit in Dublin”