Parishes across the Diocese of London have welcomed the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, for a programme of joyful witness this past weekend, joining him in proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ to the Capital.

Archbishop Justin regularly visits dioceses across the Church of England to join in their mission, reaching those who are not regular churchgoers and those who would not call themselves Christians.

From 14-16 July, he joined with clergy in Southall and Hounslow in the West, Tower Hamlets in the East, and Edmonton Town in the North, to help serve the London Diocese’s vision for every Londoner to encounter the love of God in Christ.

Archbishop Justin began the first day with Morning Prayer in Bethnal Green, before travelling to Our Father’s House, a fresh expression of church for recovering addicts led by the Revd Raff Chaves. He then joined clergy from All Hallows Bow in door-knocking on the Lincoln Estate in Bow, before spending time with two groups of local young people connected with the urban youth charity XLP and the employment skills coaching organisation SPEAR.

On Saturday, Archbishop Justin began his day with prayer at Holy Trinity Hounslow, then joined with parishes across the Hounslow and Southall area in street witness and evangelism. He then joined Hope Church Hounslow and their weekly Hope Church Football Academy, run in partnership with KICK GB. In the afternoon he took part in a Hindi-language service ran by Holy Trinity Hounslow, held outside the church.

Archbishop Justin began his final day in London Diocese with a visit to Wormwood Scrubs, where he joined the Chaplaincy Team in meeting and praying with prisoners. He spent the rest of the day in north London joining parishes in their ministry, including All Saints Church Edmonton which runs a foodbank in partnership with the organisation Build Achieve Support Empower (BASE).

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said:

“It is the most wonderful privilege to be involved with local churches as they reach out to their communities with the good news of Christ Jesus. We are so grateful to so many in the London diocese for the welcome, work and witness involved in these last three days. The local church is Gods primary instrument for the transformation of society – and we saw that transformation in and through churches in Tower Hamlets, Hounslow and Edmonton. We joined in with what God is doing through his people in schools and prisons, on football pitches and high streets, in food banks, with recovering addicts, employment projects and prayer on the streets. This is what the church is doing across London – engaging with its neighbourhoods with the love of Christ. I was humbled to play a small part in such immense work. May God bless and increase the joy and hope of your witness.” 

 The Bishop of London, Sarah Mullally, said:

“Having Archbishop Justin join us this past weekend was a joy. We were able to show the inspirational breadth of ministry being undertaken across the Diocese, and demonstrate our vision for every Londoner to encounter the love of God in Christ.”