Archbishop of Wales Dr Barry Morgan to retire in 2017

Dr Barry Morgan Image copyright The Church in Wales
Image caption Dr Barry Morgan will retire on his 70th birthday in January

The Archbishop of Wales has announced he will retire next year.

Dr Barry Morgan has spent almost 14 years at the helm of the Church in Wales, making him the longest serving archbishop in the worldwide Anglican Communion.

He will also retire as Bishop of Llandaff after more than 17 years, having previously been Bishop of Bangor for nearly seven years.

Dr Morgan said it had been an "enormous privilege to serve".

"It's been a rollercoaster ride but all along I have been sustained and inspired by the people I meet, day in day out," he added.

During his time as archbishop, Dr Morgan has championed many changes in the Church in Wales, including a change in its law to enable women to be ordained as bishops.

He also apologised "unreservedly" to gay couples for prejudice in the church.

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Media captionThe Archbishop's work has been 'hugely appreciated', says Canon Aled Edwards of Churches Together in Wales

Dr Morgan lost his wife Hilary to cancer earlier this year.

He said: "I would like to thank all those who have supported, shared and upheld me in my ministry over the years, particularly since Hilary's death - the loss of her love, encouragement and friendship has been enormously hard to bear."

Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said Dr Morgan had been "an extraordinary servant of those places where he has ministered".

First Minister of Wales, Carwyn Jones, said: "He has had such a positive impact on the lives of so many people from Wales' religious communities and has encouraged the establishment of good community relations across the country.

"I am grateful for his advice and wisdom on matters affecting the economic, social and cultural life in Wales and for his unwavering commitment to promote interfaith work across Wales."


  • Born in the village of Gwaun-Cae-Gurwen, near Neath
  • Read history at London, Theology at Cambridge and trained for the ministry at Wescott House, Cambridge
  • Studied for a doctorate while a university lecturer
  • Has worked in a range of ministerial contexts - in the parish ministry, as a university and theological college lecturer and university chaplain, and as an archdeacon, director of ordinands and as a continuing ministerial education officer
  • Served on the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches and on the Primates Standing Committee of the Anglican Communion
  • Was a member of the Lambeth Commission which produced the Windsor Report 2004
  • Has published a number of articles and books
  • Pro-chancellor of the University of Wales and an honorary fellow of the universities of Cardiff, Swansea, Bangor, Cardiff Metropolitan and the University of Wales, Trinity St David
  • Chaired an inquiry on behalf of Shelter Cymru on homelessness in Wales
  • Enjoys playing golf and reading novels

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