Church in Wales: Archbishop John Davies to retire in May

The Archbishop of Wales will retire in May after four years as leader of the Church in Wales, it has been announced.

The Most Rev John Davies, the 13th man to hold the position, was appointed in 2017 and has also been bishop of Swansea and Brecon since 2008.

Mr Davies, 67, will retire from his roles as archbishop and bishop on 2 May.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said he valued Mr Davies’s “wisdom, passion, skill and diplomacy”

Andrew John, the Bishop of Bangor, will take over until the election of a new archbishop later in the year.

Mr Davies said he had hoped he had made the church “better equipped, better understood, less mysterious and more welcoming”.

He said: “In the current exceptionally trying circumstances, I have been immensely impressed with the compassion, imagination and innovation with which so many have responded, succeeding in making the church more accessible and, dare I say, relevant.”

‘Skill and diplomacy’

He also thanked his colleagues, and said his job would have been “all but impossible” without them.

Paying tribute, the Most Rev Welby said: “I have very much enjoyed working with John during his time as Archbishop of Wales. I have greatly valued his wisdom, his passion for the Gospel and evangelism, and his skill and diplomacy in dealing with often complex situations.

“The coronavirus pandemic meant that I was not able to visit last April for the anniversary of the disestablishment of the Church in Wales, but I very much hope that it will be possible to come to Wales before John retires to thank him in person for his support and wise counsel.”

The Bishop of Bangor, chief executive of the Church in Wales and chairman of the Church’s Representative Body also paid tribute to Mr Davies.

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