It would be impossible to do justice to Archbishop Rowan Williams’ gracious and deeply moving remarks upon his reception of the 2009 Campion Award. After a welcome by our editor in chief, Drew Christiansen, S.J., which will be posted soon, the Archbishop of Canterbury dilated on the idea of a “martyrial ecumenism,” mused on the surprising links between Shakespeare and St. Edmund Campion, and emphasized the central place of forgiveness in all relationships. After his remarks, the assembled group gathered for an ecumenical prayer service in our house chapel along with Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the Holy See’s nuncio to the United Nations, Bishop William Murphy of Rockville Center and a representative from Archbishop Demetrios. Bishop Murphy praised the “dignity” of Archbishop Williams during the recent conversations between Rome and Canterbury. After this, we enjoyed a convivial meal with the archbishop and his party, and presented him with an illustration of a poem he had translated, on the Welsh martyrs.
Grace, erudition, grace and--above all and most importantly--a deep spirituality characterize the archbishop of Canterbury, and we are grateful that he joined us this evening. His full remarks, on audio, which we will later transcribe are here at this link. Do yourself a favor and listen.