THE Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby is to visit Coventry in another coup for the city, it has been announced today.
Lambeth Palace has released details of his visit to Coventry and Warwickshire in May.
The Most Reverend Justin Welby will be “meeting people throughout the city and county which profoundly shaped his mission and ministry for fifteen years,” the Diocese of Coventry said.
It follows the awarding of UK City of Culture in 2021 and recent royal visits to the city and region.
Having been ordained in Coventry Cathedral in 1992, Justin Welby was a curate in Nuneaton and then a rector in Southam.
He later served at Coventry Cathedral from 2002 to 2007, where he became the Canon for Reconciliation Ministry.
A decade later he is frequently seen wearing the Coventry Cross of Nails.
The Diocese of Coventry said Archbishop Justin is “returning home to help celebrate the Centenary of the Diocese of Coventry”.
It added: “The diocese, in its current form, was created in 1918. At the same time, the old parish church of St Michael became the cathedral of the new diocese.”
It follows an invitation to visit from the Bishop of Coventry, Dr Christopher Cocksworth, who said: “It’s very exciting to be able to welcome the Archbishop of Canterbury back to the Diocese he knows so well as part of our centenary celebrations.
“There’s much that’s new that we’re looking forward to showing Archbishop Justin but we also want to celebrate the way that we’re trying today what our forebears did in the past – to live out the reconciling, transforming, life-affirming love of God and to share it with all the people of Coventry and Warwickshire.”
Between May 2 and May 5, Archbishop Justin will be meeting civic and religious leaders, refugees, asylum seekers, farmers, school children, teachers, students, business leaders, performers in the Arts, hospital patients and staff.
The public will also have an opportunity to hear and meet the archbishop at three events.
• The main highlight of the archbishop’s visit will be a Centenary Festival at Coventry Cathedral on Saturday May 5. The festival starts at 10.30am and includes music, drama and activities for all ages.
• There will be a hog roast at Grange Farm, Grandborough (between Rugby and Southam) on Thursday May 3. The event starts at 6.30pm.
• ‘Ask the Archbishop’ is an event for people in their 20s and 30s at All Saint’s Church, Chilvers Coton (Nuneaton) on Friday May 4. It starts at 7.30pm and includes an opportunity for questions from the audience.
Admission to all three events are free of charge, and further information can be found online at cov100.org