The Very Rev. David Richardson has been appointed as the Archbishop of Canterbury's representative to the Holy See and director of the Anglican Centre in Rome.
Richardson, 52, is dean of St. Paul's Cathedral in Melbourne, Australia and was previously dean of St. Peter's Cathedral in Adelaide. He will succeed the Rt. Rev. John Flack, who retires in February 2008. Richardson will take up his appointment after Easter 2008.
Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams congratulated Richardson on his appointment. "I am delighted that someone of David Richardson's stature will be carrying forward the much-valued work of his predecessor, Bishop John Flack," he said. "His role at this important time builds on four decades of dialogue between Anglicans and Roman Catholics," he said. "It will be exercised in the context of the 'many area of witness and service' which call for 'closer co-operation between us,' as Pope Benedict and I affirmed in our Common Declaration last year."
Richardson responded: "I am delighted to accept this appointment and honored that the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Governors of the Anglican Centre have placed this trust in me. I am also very pleased that this means the Anglican Church of Australia is able to be represented at this key level of the vitally important area of ecumenism."
Archbishop Rowan and Pope Benedict are two of the great spiritual and intellectual visionaries of our time - men of profound intelligence, learning and holiness - and I am looking forward very much to doing whatever I can in this position to work with the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and Lambeth Palace in the cause of the Gospel and our shared ecumenical endeavor. I am also looking forward to promoting through the work of the Anglican Centre mutual understanding at every level, particularly in areas of divergent views, and to strengthening the bonds of affection and trust between our two communions."
The Rev. Dr. Bill Franklin will serve as acting director of the Anglican Centre in Rome from February to April 2008. Franklin is an academic fellow and associate priest of the Centre, and associate director of the American Academy in Rome.
After studying English literature at the University of Queensland, Richardson trained in theology at St Barnabas' College in Adelaide, Melbourne College of Divinity and then received his postgraduate diploma in Pastoral Theology at the University of Birmingham in the U.K.
Richardson remained in the U.K. and served his curacy at Great St Mary's, the University Church in Cambridge whilst also becoming a chaplain at Girton College in the university from 1976-1979. He then returned to St Barnabas' theological college as sub-warden where he taught New Testament Studies, Liturgy and Pastoral Care & Spirituality until 1982.
For the next five years, Richardson served as rector of St. Lucia's in Brisbane. In 1988, he was invited to become the dean of St. Peter's Cathedral in Adelaide at which he served for 11 years before becoming the dean of St. Paul's in 1999. Being responsible for two major cathedrals, Richardson has worked with local and national civic leaders and with leaders of other Christian and faith traditions as well as nurturing the life of two major centers of Christian worship.
Richardson's served for 10 years as the clerical representative for Australia on the Anglican Consultative Council (1992-2002). For the last 25 years he has also served on the Australian National Liturgical Commission and was its executive secretary for 15 years. He also served for 15 years on the ecumenical body, the Australian Consultation on Liturgy.
David is married to Margie, a clinical psychologist. They have two children, Emma and Tom.
The Anglican Centre in Rome was founded in 1966 with the encouragement of Archbishop Michael Ramsey and Pope Paul VI. The Centre enables Anglican/Roman Catholic dialogue at every level and encourages the formation of lasting friendships between leading Roman Catholics and Anglicans. The Centre gives opportunities for Roman Catholics to learn more about the Anglican tradition and Anglicans to learn about the Roman Church. A place of study, for groups and individuals, the Centre offers hospitality, dialogue and prayer in the search for unity.