Canon Andrew White (Vicar of Baghdad) spoke at Carryduff Elim Church on Wed 15th April 2015.
In Iraq, Canon Andrew lived in Baghdad until November 2014, serving as the vicar of St George’s Church just outside the Green Zone. He formerly lived in the Green Zone. He has been dubbed “Vicar of Baghdad”, because his church is the only remaining Anglican church in Iraq. His people (the congregation of St George’s) refer to him as their “Aboona” (Father). Here, he has continued the reconciliation that he promoted during his time as Director of International Ministry at Coventry Cathedral. The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East was established in 2005 as part of his reconciliation work in Iraq and the Middle East as a whole.
In November 2014 the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, ordered his departure due to the increased security risks and the Church of England’s no hostage policy.
His main aim has been to try to maintain communication between Shia and Sunni leaders, and to “gain trust of key religious leaders on both sides in various conflict areas”. He sees his role as trying to mediate and re-establish the dialogue between conflicting groups.