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Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon awarded the Cross of St. Augustine

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby (left) with the Most Rev. Josiah Idowu-Fearon. Photo: Lambeth Palace

Founding member of the World Day Planning Committee Most Rev. Josiah Fearon receives an award by the Archbishop of Canterbury. 

[Lambeth Palace press release] The Most Revd Josiah, the Anglican Bishop of Kaduna in the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), received the Cross of St Augustine from at Lambeth Palace yesterday.

Presenting the award, Archbishop Justin said he was “delighted” to give Archbishop Josiah the Cross “in recognition of his outstanding ministry in promoting Christian-Muslim dialogue in Nigeria and across the world.”

The Most Revd Josiah, who has a doctorate in Islamic Studies, has devoted his ministry to promoting inter-faith relations.

“He has worked indefatigably on Christian-Muslim relations, displaying extraordinary courage and vision in often the most difficult of circumstances,” said the Archbishop, who gave Archbishop Josiah the Cross during a Eucharist in the Crypt Chapel at Lambeth Palace.

Archbishop Josiah, who co-founded the Centre for the Study of Islam and Christianity in Kaduna, is “an inspiration” to many Christians and faith leaders across the Anglican Communion, said Archbishop Justin.

“Through his work he continues to play a pivotal role in advancing understanding between Christians and Muslims in Nigeria in an effort to stem the cycle of violence and misunderstanding between the two faith groups,” he said.

The Most Revd Josiah’s work in this area extends beyond Nigeria. He is a past President of the Network for Inter Faith Concerns, and continues to be a member of its management team. He is Chair of of the Programme for Christian-Muslim Relations in Africa (PROCMURA), and is a member of the Religious Advisory Council of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation.

Also in attendance at the service were Archbishop Edmund Akanya, the Archbishop of Kaduna Province; Bishop Praises Omole-Ekun, Dean of the St Francis of Assisi Theological College; Dr Johnson Apenad Mbillah of PROCMURA), and John Cardinal Onaiyekan, whom Archbishop Justin prayed for during the Eucharist as a symbol of reconciliation between Anglicans and Roman Catholics.

Born in 1949 in Nigeria, Archbishop Josiah trained briefly as a soldier before training as a priest and became ordained in 1971. He became a bishop in 1990.

See more photos from the service on Flickr

Read the orignal article on the Episcopal News Services.