Rowan Williams to take sabbatical at Georgetown

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, will spend much of his summer sabbatical at Georgetown University sources in England and Washington confirmed today.

Williams, has stayed at the Jesuit university twice previously during seminars of interfaith scholars, and is friendly with the university’s president John J. DeGioia.

In March 2004, in partnership with President DeGioia, Williams convened the third Building Bridges seminar at Georgetown. The fifth Building Bridges seminar in March 2006 was also hosted by Georgetown. Williams initiated the annual Building Bridges seminars to promote dialog between Christian and Muslim scholars.

Williams has not visited Episcopal churches during his previous visits, although he has held breakfast meetings with prominent local church leaders. He has refused numerous requests to participate in Episcopal Church events.

The news that Williams would be spending his sabbatical in the United States became public before Williams announced whether he would accede to a request to meet with the House of Bishops of the Episcopal Church in an effort to defuse the crisis over homosexuality that threatens the future of the Anglican Communion.

That meeting is now set for late September in New Orleans.

– Jim Naughton

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