This is worth taking a quick peek at. As the Archbishop of Canterbury (I almost cheekily wrote “His Hairiness” at that point, just saved myself in time) is preparing to step down from his office, he is giving lots of interviews and writing books and what not about his time in the job. This interview with Benedict Brogan in the Telegraph is a fairly honest and straightforward self-assessment. If the height of wisdom is “know thyself”, then Rowan Williams is obviously a wise man. We don’t have the full transcript of the interview, but the web page does include a 5 minute recorded excerpt of the Archbishop in reflective mode.
Points of interest:
1) On the Sharia controversy (and probably applicable to other issues on which he has commented): “I failed to find the right words. I succeeded in confusing people. I’ve made mistakes – that’s probably one of them.”
2) On same sex marriage (from the interview recording): “That would mean a change of doctrine for us, and the government doesn’t do that for us”.
3) “He laughs at the recollection of his exchanges with the atheist academic Richard Dawkins, whom he describes as the latest “pub bore” in a tradition of “great public atheists”.” Who’d have thought that that was what he was thinking during their polite “tea & scones” debate?
4) ” He is also upbeat about relations between Lambeth and Rome, in particular after the Pope’s visit last year, but doubts “that we’re any nearer institutional reconciliation”.