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Archbishop of Canterbury recognizes Abuom, other WCC leader

Archbishop of Canterbury recognizes Abuom, other WCC leader

Photo: Lambeth Palace

15 June 2017

In an awards ceremony held at Lambeth Palace on 9 June, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby presented a Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism to Dr Agnes Abuom, moderator of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee.

Three other WCC representatives were also among more than 35 people recognized for outstanding service to the church.

Abuom, from the Anglican Church of Kenya, was elected unanimously by the WCC 10th Assembly on 8 November 2013 to serve as moderator of the WCC Central Committee. She is the first woman and the first African to serve in this position in the history of the WCC.

Abuom is a development consultant serving both Kenyan and international organizations coordinating social action programmes for religious and civil society across Africa.

The award citation commended her work related to economic justice, peace and reconciliation. “She has also worked for the Province of the Anglican church of Kenya, mostly on national development issues,” the citation read. “Her contribution in all of these fields has been consistently outstanding.”

Also recognized was Bishop Samuel Azariah, who received a Hubert Walter Award for Reconciliation and Interfaith Cooperation. Azariah is the moderator of the Church of Pakistan and member of the WCC executive committee.

Archbishop Dr Antje Jackelén, primate of the Church of Sweden, also received a Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism for her leadership in addressing human, theological and social issues in partnership and dialogue. In 2014, she was elected to be the first woman to serve as archbishop of Uppsala.

Bishop Tabani Paride Kenyi, cofounder of the New Sudan Council of Churches (NSCC), a WCC partner, received the Hubert Walter Award for Reconciliation and Interfaith Cooperation.

Archbishop Welby personally presented the awards, recognizing the outstanding service in different fields, including the priorities in his ministry ahead of the Church of England: prayer and the religious life; reconciliation; and evangelism and witness.

Recipients included religious, political and community leaders, musicians and others, from Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

More information on the Lambeth Cross for Ecumenism