Justin Welby: Why I'm a Christian

The Cinnamon Network

The Archbishop of Canterbury has said he is a Christian because it is a "reasonable thing to be". The best answer to what happened to Jesus's body after the crucifixion was that he rose from the dead, he said.

The Most Rev Justin Welby, visiting the offices of News UK near London Bridge, said being a Christian "doesn't hide us" from life's cruelties but that Christ is "the light who draws close to us whatever life can bring to us."

Jesus is an "inescapable reality" in his life, he said.

Archbishop Welby was addressing the News UK Christian Fellowship, a thriving community that draws members from across the titles published by the company: The Times, the Sun, the Sunday Times and the TLS.

Speaking on the 10th anniversary of the 7/7 London terror attacks, he opened the meeting with a moment of silence and prayer.

He described how he first came across people who knew Jesus during a gap year in Kenya. In his second year at Cambridge University he "found the reality of what it is to become a Christian."

His faith had been with him through some of the darkest periods of his life.

"Christian faith doesn't hide us from the cruelties of life. Jesus himself faced every aspect of the cruelty of life that is possible. It's just in it he is there in it in the middle of the mess with us."

He added: "Christ is the light who draws close to us whatever life can bring to us. All of us will experience bereavement, again and again many of us, all of us will experience death. What is the company? Who is the person that will be with us at those last moments?"

He said he was a Christian because Jesus found him and called him, around 40 years ago. "I'm a Christian because it makes sense to me, because Jesus rose from the dead, he conquered death and sin and suffering. I'm a Christian because in Jesus I see the God who didn't say, 'this is how you lot have got to behave and I'm going to watch you and judge you,' but came alongside us and lived in the middle of the absolute foulest mess and himself died unjustly young in great agony and bore all that was wrong in this world on his shoulders.

"I'm a Christian because in my own experience I've run away and he's met me and yet not been angry with me; when I've failed he's picked me up and healed and strengthened me.

"That's why I'm a Christian. And that's why, whatever happens, whatever stupid mistakes, I know that even at the end of it all, even if everything else fails, God doesn't, and he will not fail even to the end of my life."