Archbishop of Canterbury apologizes for linking to the Anglican slave trade

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby apologized on June 16 as a result of the investigation (pdf) I found a link to the 18th century Atlantic slave trade in the Anglican Predecessor Fund.

Welby said he was “deeply sorry” for the link and called it “a source of shame.”

According to a study commissioned by the British Church Commission, a “significant amount” of the Queen Anne’s Bounty, a fund founded in 1704 to increase salaries for poor clergy, “trades enslaved people.” It was put into the Nankai company. “Charity Said June 16th.

The fund also “has many benefits, many of which are likely to come from individuals related to or benefiting from cross-Atlantic animal slavery or plantation economies.” Stated. “

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“The Bubbles of the South Sea, The Scene of” The Change of the Alley in 1720 “” 1847. By Edward Matthew Ward (1816-1879). Ward’s famous oil paintings of 1847 show British speculative enthusiasts in the early 18th century, resulting in the financial ruin of many investors. (Alamy / PA Media)

The South Sea Company, founded in 1711 to refinance British national debt, was granted the exclusive right to trade British enslaved people to Spanish-Americans.

According to a recent report released by the Church, the South Sea Company estimated that it had transported more than 34,000 slaves “in a crowded, unsanitary, unsafe and inhumane situation” during its 30-year operation. It has been.

By the time the South Sea Company stopped enslaving in 1739, Queen Anne’s bounty had accumulated about £ 204,000 (equivalent to about £ 443 million today) in pension investments.

The research paper explained that this income helped the Queen Anne’s Bounty serve its purpose of supplementing the income of poor clergy, and was probably reinvested, contributing to the overall accumulation of Queen Anne’s Bounty’s wealth.

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Located on the corner of London’s Bishopsgate Street and Threadneedle Street, Old South Sea House is the headquarters of the South Sea Company and burned down in 1826. (Alamy / PA Media)

Welby, who also serves as church chairman, said he was “deeply sorry” for the fund’s connection to cross-Atlantic animal slavery.

“This abominable deal robbed men, women and children created in the image of God and robbed them of their dignity and freedom. Some in the church actively supported and then benefited from it. The fact that it was a source of shame, “he added.

Welby called it “a moment of mourning, repentance, and restorative action,” praying for “people affected by this news,” and hoping to “work together to find a new path.” He said he was.

Bishop of Birmingham, David Arkart, a board member of the Church Commission and chair of the group that oversaw the investigation, apologized for the findings, and the charity said, “Using this knowledge, we are globally. Make sure you are at the forefront of responsible investment. “

He also said the Commissioner “continues to work on the changes in the companies we invest in today and encourages them to defend human rights in the supply chain.”

“Through our policy of advocating’respect for others’, we aim to create a more just world today in which all children of God can prosper.” rice field.

The Church Commission was established in 1948 by integrating two organizations, Queen Anne’s Bounty and the Church Commission.

After decades of anti-slavery campaigns by Quaker abolitionists and other Christian evangelical groups, the British Empire made slavery illegal in 1807 and then abolished slavery with compensated liberation. did.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Lily Chow


Lily Zhou is a freelance writer who mainly covers the British news of The Epoch Times.