The Archbishop of Canterbury has bewailed an ignorance about religion that lumps jihadists and Anglican Christians together and dismisses them as “bonkers.”

Speaking to head teachers of Church of England schools, Archbishop Justin Welby singled out the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defense. He said it is “desperately trying to catch up, to understand a world in which they have no grip on what it is to be religious at all, where religious illiteracy is prevalent and extremely destructive of understanding, and where they can’t see really the difference between an extremist Muslim group like the Muslim Brotherhood and a sort of conservative evangelical group in a Church of England church.”

It is “fine to reject and condemn many of the things done in the name of religion,” he said. But it is just as important to “understand what it is that can so catch hold of someone that they think life itself is not worth living if that contradicts what they believe.”

Uganda Court Affirms Archbishop

Uganda’s High Court has dismissed a case against Archbishop Stanley Ntagali’s control of the Diocese of West Ankole.

The dispute dates from early October, when Ntagali appointed commissaries to run the diocese after the retirement of the Rt. Rev. Yona Katoneene.

The case was brought by 11 senior West Ankole clergy who claimed the archbishop did not have the power under the constitution of the Church of Uganda. Their court petition said: “The act of the defendant of appointing a bishop’s commissary for West Ankole Diocese was unlawful.”

The High Court in Kampala ruled that the archbishop was within his rights. Under canon law, Ntagali has powers to take over the seat of any vacant diocese until a new bishop is appointed, Justice Lydia Mugambe said.

Ntagali, speaking at a service in which he confirmed 657 people at Bugongi Secondary School in the Sheema District, said his actions were in the church’s best interests.

“I have been bishop for 12 years and I am not fighting for anything,” he said. “I led the diocese and God called me to serve as archbishop. I am a shepherd and that’s why I am here today.

“I have forgiven the 11 canons who took me to court. They were crippled and they need to repent for dragging God’s church to courts of law because they sued the head of church in Uganda.”

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