The Man most likely to crown the next monarch of England is Archbishop John Tucker Mugabi Sentamu.
Currently the 97th Archbishop of York, Sentamu was born on 10 June 1949 in a village near Kampala Uganda, the sixth of 13 children. Sentamu studied for his law degree at Makerere University, Kampala, practicing as an advocate of the High Court of Uganda. In 1974, just three weeks after his marriage, he was arrested and detained for 90 days by the administration of Ugandan strong-man Idi Amin. He fled Uganda for the United Kingdom that year. In England, he read theology at Selwyn College, Cambridge obtaining a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1976, his Master of Arts degree in 1979 and a PhD in 1984 and was baptized at Eden Baptist Church, Cambridge. Sentamu trained for the priesthood at Ridley Hall, Cambridge and was ordained a priest in 1979. He worked in several categories before his consecration, in 1996, including serving on judicial reviews in two prominent murder cases of young black men.
In 2002, he was appointed Bishop of Birmingham where his ministry was commended by Christians of all backgrounds. Sentamu became President of Youth for Christ in 2004 and President of the YMCA in April 2005. That same year, the prime minister's office announced his translation to York as the 97th archbishop. His enthronement at York Minster on 30 November 2005 during the feast of Saint Andrew witnessed a ceremony with African singing, dancing and contemporary music, with Sentamu himself playing African drums during the service. As Archbishop of York, Sentamu sits in the House of Lords and is a member of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom. In 2007, he was installed as the first Chancellor of York St John University and first Chancellor of the University of Cumbria, taking up the position when the University opened on 1 August 2007. The Archbishop also has several honorary degrees.
Turning down an invitation to appear in the reality TV show Celebrity Big Brother, Sentamu said "Celebrity... becomes a form of idolatry". The Archbishop supports many charities. In 2012 Sentamu joined The Sun, donating all his income from this position to St Leonard’s Hospice in York, of which he is president. He also famously took up a challenge to participate in a skydiving event to raise funds for charity. Openly expressing his desire to be known as the Archbishop for York, rather than Archbishop OF York, Sentamu is outspoken on issues close to his heart. The Archbishop has criticized Ugandan laws which seek to impose death sentences on homosexuals as "victimizing", asserting that the Anglican Communion was committed to recognizing that gay people were valued by God. However, in 2012 he stated his opposition to government plans to legalize same-sex marriage in the United Kingdom, asserting that “Marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman,”, saying “I don’t want to redefine very clear social structures that have been in existence for a long time.”
The second most senior cleric in the Church of England, after the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, United Kingdom bookmakers converged on Sentamu in late 2010 as the most likely bishop to become the next Archbishop of Canterbury. Following Rowan Williams’ resignation in 2012, Sentamu is most likely to become the man to crown the next King of England. As Archbishop of Canterbury and head of the Anglican Church worldwide, Sentamu’s first challenge will uniting a church deeply divided over issues of homosexuality in the clergy.
UPDATE: On 4 February 2013, the Bishop of Durham, the Right Reverend Justin Welby officially become the Archbishop of Canterbury at a ceremony, known as the ‘Confirmation of Election'.
Last Updated on Monday, 11 March 2013 10:44
Written by Lola Balola