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Easter To Be Fixed To One Date All The Time, Archbishop Says

The Archbishop of Canterbury plans to fix the date of Easter, bringing an end to one of the longest-running disputes within the church. The Archbishop Most Reverend Justin Welby said
17 Jan 2016 13:06
Easter To Be Fixed To One Date All The Time, Archbishop Says
Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby

The Archbishop of Canterbury plans to fix the date of Easter, bringing an end to one of the longest-running disputes within the church.

The Archbishop Most Reverend Justin Welby said that he hoped to make the change within the next five to 10 years, in a move that will likely have huge knock-on effects for schools and other seasonally-dependent industries, according to reports.

Mr Welby said that he would consult with other authorities including Pope Francis and the Coptic Pope to negotiate a change to the date. It is very unlikely that any change will be made without the full assent of all those authorities.

Pope Francis has already discussed changing the date of Easter. Last year he said that “we have to come to an agreement” about changing the date, at a meeting of priests from around the world, according to the Catholic News Agency.

Mr Welby did warn however that churches have been attempting since the 10th century to fix the date of the festival, which at the moment is set with reference to the moon and the sun.

The legal foundation for changing the date of Easter has been in law since the Easter Act of 1928. But for it to be changed, churches need to assent to it — though the law allows the Government to simply decide to fix the date, authorities have deferred to churches since it was passed.

Since the fourth century, the date of Easter has fallen on the first Sunday, after first full moon, after the spring equinox. That means that it can vary hugely from year-to-year, leading to mix-ups, confusion and inconvenience.

Mr Welby also apologised to the gay and lesbian community for the “hurt and pain” that the church has caused.

He said that the persecution of people for their sexuality was a “constant source of deep sadness” to him.

“I don’t have the right to speak for everyone. I wanted to take this opportunity… to say how sorry I am for the hurt and pain, in the past and present, the church has caused.”

 

UK Indepedent
Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj



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