[National Catholic Register]

A prominent and retired Church of England bishop once tipped to become a future Archbishop of Canterbury has been received into the Catholic Church, becoming one of the most high-profile Anglican clergymen to make the journey to Rome possibly since Father Ronald Knox in 1917.

Michael Nazir-Ali … [served] as the Anglican Bishop of Rochester in England, during which time he built up a reputation for being a leading defender of the Christian faith and culture and a defender of persecuted Christians.

His sometimes outspoken comments, backed by what former archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams once called his “enormous theological skill,” would occasionally cause him to clash with secular powers, particularly over Islam on which he was a leading authority in the Anglican Communion.

In 2008, a year before he left Rochester, he received death threats for telling a Sunday newspaper that Islamic extremists were creating “no-go areas” for non-Muslims in Britain. He also said the church was not doing enough to convert Muslims to Christianity, and led dialogue initiatives between the Anglican Communion and Islamic academic institutions such as Al-Azhar university in Cairo and its Shia equivalent in Iran.

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