Justin Welby

From RationalWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Christ died for
our articles about

Icon christianity.svg
Devil's in the details

Justin Welby is the current Archbishop of Canterbury, and therefore senior bishop of the Church of England and head of the Anglican Communion. This is a relatively clean job by his standards as he worked for 11 years for the Oil Industry before he felt a call to become a priest. It's arguable whether his neighbours improved after that; he was ordained through Holy Trinity Brompton, the church that came up with the Alpha Course.


He was born in 1956[note 1] and went to Eton College, and Cambridge UniversityWikipedia to study history and law. After graduating he joined the Oil Industry, excavating Africa and the North Sea, and spending five of those years as first a derivatives trader then Treasurer for Enterprise Oil.[1][2] He resigned to be ordained in 1989.

He was first rejected for ordination and told he had no future within the Church of England.[3] He studied Theology at Durham University to become a priest.

He considered his application for Archbishop of Canterbury to be a joke and was ordered to apply after being a bishop for only seven months.[4]



Justin Welby opposes gay marriage and has voted and spoken against it in the House of Lords.[5] He fully understands and accepts that the homophobia displayed in his actions is seen as "akin to racism" and also in his words "the vast majority of people under 35 not only think that what we’re saying is incomprehensible but also think that we’re plain wrong and wicked and equate it to racism and other forms of gross injustice."[6] In an effort to shore up the opposition to gay marriage he has told people not to be afraid of "incoherence and inconsistency".[7] But despite doing whatever he can to continue legal discrimination he has told Evangelical Christians to repent over their attitude to homosexuality.[8]

His reasoning for opposing gay marriage appear to come close to being kettle logic. His justifications have included:

Any comparisons between the above and kettle logicWikipedia are probably justifiable.

Payday Loans[edit]

Shortly after he became Archbishop, Justin Welby decided to try to find a moral cause for the Church of England to tackle. So he chose the payday loan company Wonga.com, and claimed that the Church would put them out of business.[15] It didn't take long for investigative journalists to discover that the Church of England had invested in Wonga.com.[16] And rather than continue with its attempt to challenge the payday loan company, the Church kept its stake so that it didn't have to sell at a loss.[17] Almost a year later the CofE Ethical Investment Advisory Panel decided that investing in payday loans was fine.[18]

The Church of England finally got rid of its stake in Wonga.com 50 weeks after Welby started the battle with them.[19]


Justin Welby believes poverty is a bad thing. He considers that the Food Banks currently needed are "a very sad fact that they’re there, but also it’s a great opportunity for the Church to demonstrate the love of Christ".[20] He blames austerity for their being needed.[21] He also believes that "As a civilised society, we have a duty to support those among us who are vulnerable and in need. ... It is essential that we have a welfare system that responds to need and recognises the rising costs of food, fuel and housing."[22]



  1. British Banks Face Heat From on High - Wall Street Journal, 30 September 2012
  2. Official Biography
  3. Archbishop of Canterbury: 'You have no future in the Church' - The Telegraph, 11 November 2012
  4. Welby: my application for Canterbury was a joke - The Times, 31 January 2013
  5. Gay marriage bill: Peers back government plans - BBC News 5 June 2013
  6. Archbishop of Canterbury: My gay marriage view can be seen as 'akin to racism' - The Independent, 28 August 2013
  7. Justin Welby says 'Church viewed liked racists over homosexuality' - The Telegraph, 12 February 2014
  8. Archbishop urges Christians to ‘repent’ over ‘wicked’ attitude to homosexuality - The Telegraph, 28 August 2013
  9. Young people think opposition to gay marriage is wicked, says archbishop - The Guardian, 28 August 2013
  10. Welcome same-sex couples or be damned as bigots, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby tells Church of England The Independent, 13 February 2013
  11. Gay marriage weakens society, says Archbishop of Canterbury - The Telegraph, 03 June 2013
  12. Welby: backing gay marriage could be 'catastrophic' for Christians elsewhere - BBC News, 04 April 2014
  13. African Christians will be killed if C of E accepts gay marriage, says Justin Welby - The Guardian. 04 April 2014
  14. Archbishop Of Canterbury Justin Welby Suggests African Christians Will Be Killed If Church Accepts Gay Marriage - The Huffington Post, 04 April 2014
  15. War on Wonga: We're putting you out of business, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby tells payday loans company - The Independent, 25 July 2013
  16. Justin Welby's Wonga revelation - The Telegraph, 28 July 2013
  17. Archbishop Justin Welby admits Wonga stake has not been sold - The Guardian, December 31, 2013
  18. Wonga: Church of England advised by ethics review to keep its stake - The Guardian, 28 June 2014
  19. Church of England finally casts out Wonga - The Telegraph - 10 July 2014
  20. Anglican Church to investigate reasons for surge in food banks - The Independent, 16 October 2013
  21. Justin Welby: Food banks users ‘aren’t scroungers’ - The Independent, July 9 2013
  22. Benefits changes will push children into poverty, says archbishop of Canterbury - The Guardian, 11 March 2013