Next month’s meeting of Anglican primates – the senior archbishops, moderators and presiding bishops from the 42 churches of the Anglican Communion – will be held March 28-31 in London, England. The meeting had been planned to take place in Rome, Italy. However, COVID-related travel restrictions in Italy meant that around half of the church leaders would not be eligible to fully participate.
The meeting, called by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will take the form of a spiritual retreat, with the church leaders praying and studying the Bible together. The primates will also discuss the latest plans for the Lambeth Conference – the decennial meeting to which all Anglican bishops from around the world are invited. The next Lambeth Conference, postponed from 2020, will take place in Canterbury, England, in July 26-Aug. 8.
The secretary-general of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon, said: “It is not feasible to gather in Rome due to Italy’s COVID-related restrictions that would prevent a significant proportion of primates – including virtually all primates from Africa – fully participating in the meeting in person.
“I would like to thank everybody who has worked hard to facilitate a meeting in Rome, especially the director and staff of the Anglican Centre in Rome and our colleagues at the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity,” he said. “It will be possible for all primates to gather in England and to participate in person and we now shift our focus to preparing for that.”