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- Matthew 7:7-8

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The Archbishop of Canterbury Most Rev Justin Welby to Visit South India at the invitation of the Church of South India Communication

The Archbishop of Canterbury, head of the Anglican Communion, the Most Reverend Justin Welby will be visiting the Church of South India from 31st August to 5th September 2019 along with his spouse Mrs. Caroline Welby, on the invitation of the Moderator of Church of South India, Most Rev. Thomas K. Oommen. The Archbishop of Canterbury will visit the states of Kerala, Karnataka and Telangana. He will be hosted in Kerala by the Madhya Kerala Diocese, in Karnataka by the Karnataka Central Diocese and in Telugu region by the Medak Diocese.

The Church of South India is a United and Uniting Church representing the Indian cultural and national ethos formed soon after Indian independence on 27th September 1947. The Anglican, Methodist, Congregational and Presbyterian Churches came together in an organic unity in CSI. As a United and Uniting Church, CSI has membership in three World Communions, namely, the Anglican Communion, the World Communion of Reformed Churches, the World Methodist Council as well as in the World Forum of United and Uniting Churches. The Archbishop of Canterbury is visiting the Church of South India as head of one of the Communions to which CSI belongs.

The Most Reverend Justin Welby was installed as the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury on 21st March 2013 at Canterbury Cathedral. In 2017, Archbishop Welby was invited to join the UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ High-Level Advisory Board on Mediation – the only faith leader to be on the panel. The Archbishop, as a most respected World Ecumenical leader visits Church of South India, especially to encourage and inspire the faithful to commit themselves to the ministry of peace and reconciliation.

Being leader of the Anglican Communion, the Archbishop believes that there is every possible reason for optimism about the future of Christian faith in our world. He reiterates that the present environmental and economic challenges, and those of human development and global poverty can only be faced with extraordinary Christ-liberated courage. He is firm in his vision that the Church transforms society when it takes the risks of renewal in prayer and of reconciliation. The Archbishop's visit is encapsulated as 'pastoral prayer and pilgrimage'.

In the state of Kerala, the CSI will accord a warm welcome to the visiting Archbishop of Canterbury at an ecumenical gathering in Kottayam on 31st August 2019 at the CSI Convention Centre. Bishops and leaders of various churches, people's representatives from different dioceses of CSI in Kerala and thousands of believers from various congregations will attend the ecumenical gathering.

On 1st September, the Archbishop will be preacher and celebrant at the Holy Communion Service at the CSI Holy Trinity Cathedral, Chalukunnu in Kottayam. On 2nd September, the Archbishop will have an interaction with Presbyters of the Madhya Kerala Diocese and will grace the valedictory function of the Bi-centenary celebrations of CMS College. Mrs. Caroline Welby will visit the CSI Madhya Kerala Diocesan Women's fellowship projects. 

In Bangalore, Most Rev. Justin Welby will meet and interact with an invited audience comprising of young leaders from the Information Technology and Business Technology (IT & BT) sectors on 3rd September. The Archbishop will also deliver an academic lecture to an invited audience at the United Theological College, Miller’s Road, Bangalore. Mrs. Welby will visit the Vishranthi Nilayam, the headquarters of the CSI Women's Fellowship and the Order of Sisters. The Karnataka Central Diocese will host a Reception in honour of visiting Archbishop. The Archbishop will be preacher and celebrant at the Holy Communion Service on 4th September at St. Mark's Cathedral, Bangalore.

In Medak in Telangana, Archbishop Justin Welby will be celebrant and preacher at the Holy Communion Service at CSI Cathedral, one of the biggest churches in South India on 5th September. In the evening, the Archbishop will participate in an interfaith round table at the Henry Martyn Institute at Shivarampally, in Hyderabad. He will then leave to Jabalpur on a visit to the Church of North India (CNI).

31st August 5:00 p.m.  -   Welcome & Ecumenical Gathering in Kottayam at CSI Convention Grounds

1st September 8:00 a.m.   -   Holy Eucharist Service at Kottayam Cathedra

2nd September 9:30 - 11:00 a.m.  -  CMS College Bi-centenary Valedictory

3rd September  10:00 a.m.   -  Meeting with IT BT young leaders (invited guests)

                          3:00 - 4:00 p.m.  -  Academic Lecture at UTC (invited guests)

                           6:30 p.m.  -  Reception at Bishop Cotton's Auditorium with cultural evening (invited guests)

4th September   8:00 a.m. -  Holy Eucharist Service at St. Mark's Cathedral

5th September 11:30 - 1:30 p.m.  -  Holy Eucharist Service at Medak Cathedral

                         6:00 - 8:00 p.m.   -  Interfaith round table - Henry Martyn Institute    (invited guests)