Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey has said assisted dying is "compatible with the Christian faith."
He told peers in the House of Lords: "For those who chide me, and they have, that my arguments and my change of heart is light on theological backing, let me tell you what theology is.
"It is about accompanying those very sick and very dying to that place where they feel most abandoned. If that is not theology of the best and purest kind, I really don't know what is."
The current Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, has said the Bill to be debated in the House of Lord legalising assisted dying would be 'mistaken and dangerous.'
His comments came after his predecessor Lord Carey changed his long-standing views on the subject and spoke out in support of it.
Writing in the Times, Archbishop Welby said he understood how seeing a loved one suffer prompted the desire to "do almost anything" to alleviate their suffering.
He cited the agony he suffered seeing his own seven-month-old daughter Johanna, who was fatally injured in a car crash in France, die in 1983.
But he warned that the "deep personal demands" of one situation should not blind people to the needs of others, including more than a half a million elderly people who are estimated to be abused every year in the UK.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is preparing to drive through a plan to introduce women bishops should the General Synod choose to reject it for a second time, according to The Guardian.
The body could be dissolved so that fresh elections could produce the necessary majority by November or bishops in the House of Lords could move to introduce the legislation without the approval of the Synod, the newspaper said.
A rap song inspired by the Archbishop of Canterbury's warnings about payday loans has been released - complete with music video.Read the full story ›
The Archbishop of Canterbury is to meet Pope Francis for the second time in Rome next month.
The Most Rev Justin Welby is set to visit the Pope between June 14 and June 16 at Lambeth Palace and the trip will focus on an anti-slavery and human trafficking project launched earlier this year.
Archbishop Welby will also visit the Anglican Centre to hear about poverty projects and meet members of the ecumenical Catholic order Chemin Neuf.
The two church leaders were installed within days of each other in March last year but met for the first time in Rome last June.
The Archbishop of Canterbury welcomed actor Russell Crowe to Lambeth Palace today - even though his latest film has prompted anger and cries of blasphemy from some religious groups.
Justin Welby held a short private meeting with the Australian star, who is in London to promote his film Noah, based on the biblical story in which he plays the title role.
The office for the Archbishop said the two men discussed faith and spirituality in their meeting, which came after the film's London premiere on Monday evening.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has urged people to adopt a New Year's resolution of tackling poverty in their own neighbourhoods.
The Most Rev Justin Welby said in his first New Year message as head of the Church of England that many people were "struggling" in spite of many signs of hope.
The Archbishop said: "I want to suggest this year that each of us makes a resolution to try and change the world a bit where we are.
"Nelson Mandela said that dealing with poverty is not an act of charity, it's an act of justice, he said every generation has the chance to be a great generation and we can be that great generation."
Archbishop Welby said Christian communities in the Middle East were being "attacked and massacred" in his first Christmas sermon:
Today, singing of Bethlehem, we see injustices in Palestine and Israel, where land is taken or rockets are fired, and the innocent suffer.
We see injustice in the ever more seriously threatened Christian communities of the Middle East.
They are attacked and massacred, driven into exile from a region in which their presence has always been essential.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has used his first Christmas Day sermon to highlight the "injustices" facing Britain's poor and victims of conflicts around the world.
The Most Rev Justin Welby called on Christians to "challenge the causes of poverty" despite signs of an economic recovery in the UK, as he addressed the congregation at Canterbury Cathedral.
The Archbishop of Canterbury has posted a Christmas video message on Instagram.
The Most Rev Justin Welby appears in the short clip on the photo-sharing website as part of the Church of England's social media campaign called Christmasmeans.
Mr Welby, who has more than 48,000 followers on Twitter, joined Instagram in October in his drive to spread the Christian message to the app's 150 million users worldwide.
In his Christmas message, the Archbishop says: "Christmas means that, through Jesus, God shows unconditionally that he loves us. I pray that he gives you a very blessed Christmas."
The video, posted on Lambeth Palace's Instagram account, is also being tweeted by the Archbishop and through the Lambeth Palace Twitter page, lambethpalace.