Williams: 'Church lost credibility'

The Archbishop of Canterbury has told the Church of England General Synod that "we have lost a level of credibility in the wider society" after they voted against introducing women bishops.

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Archbishop Williams addresses Synod for last time

Dr Rowan Williams has addressed to the Church of England's General Synod for the final time as Archbishop of Canterbury.

There were flowers, hugs and two prolonged standing ovations at the Synod for Dr Williams as tributes were paid to him.

The Archbishop of York and Archbishop of Canterbury share a joke at the General Synod Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

The Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu spoke of his "courageous" leadership, and paid tribute to his sense of humour and commitment as spiritual leader of the Anglican Communion.

Dr Williams' wife, theologian Jane Williams, was presented with a bouquet of flowers at the farewell debate.

The outgoing Archbishop, who leaves his post at the end of the year after a decade in office, thanked the speakers and spoke of the "generous affection and support" he had received over the years.

The Archbishop of York, Archbishop of Canterbury and his wife Jane Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

He referred to the defeat of the female bishops' legislation, highlighting the need for trust within the General Synod.

"Quite a lot of the sad and difficult stand-off in which we find ourselves as a Synod at the moment seems to come from a mutual lack of trust", he said.

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