13:10 10 November 2012
The current Bishop of Durham, Justin Welby, who is 56-years-old, has been named as the next Archbishop of Canterbury. He will be the 105thperson to take the position in leading the Anglican Church.
Bishop Welby, who triumphed over contenders such as Dr John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, was astonished at the news. He is to attend an official ceremony early next year.
He told reporters: “It's something I never expected.”
The announcement means that Bishop Welby will hold the highest senior position in the Church of England. Archbishop Rowan Williams is expected to leave the Archbishop of Canterbury post in December after ten years.
Bishop Welby told the BBC that he is faced with a big challenge in having to follow in the footsteps of who he perceives “will be recognised as one of the greatest Archbishops of Canterbury”.
It is thought that Bishop Welby is in favour of ordaining women as bishops, and that his views on same-sex marriages – as reported by The Daily Telegraph – are evolving.
PM David Cameron confirmed Bishop Welby's appointment by the social media site Twitter, and has wished him well with his new position.
Bishop Welby took up his position in Durham one year ago. Prior to this, he was appointed Dean of Liverpool and was also appointed the Rector of Southam in 1995. He has spent over a decade in the oil industry and was ordained in 1992.
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