Ex-oil man set to be next Archbishop of Canterbury and leader of world’s Anglicans

November 8, 2012

(Justin Welby, the Bishop of Durham, walks through Westminster in London November 8, 2012.  REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett)

A former oil executive and critic of corporate excess is expected to be named on Friday as the next Archbishop of Canterbury and leader of the world’s 80 million Anglicans.

Justin Welby, the Bishop of Durham, is widely tipped in British media to succeed Rowan Williams, capping a meteoric rise up the Church of England hierarchy since quitting the business world and being ordained in 1992.

He has been at Durham for less than a year.

A spokesman for Prime Minister David Cameron said the name would be announced on Friday.

The appointment will follow weeks of speculation that the nominating body assigned to elect the future spiritual leader of the Church of England was split over whether to choose a reformer or a safe pair of hands to maintain the status quo.

Williams has said his successor will need “the constitution of an ox and the skin of a rhinoceros”.

Read the full story by Alessandra Prentice here.
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