Arthur Michael Ramsey

1904- . Archbishop of Canterbury from 1961 to 1974. Educated at Repton and Magdalene College, Cambridge, where he read classics, and then theology in which he gained a first class degree, he was ordained in 1928 and served a curacy at St. Nicholas', Liverpool. From 1930 until 1936 he was subwarden of Lincoln Theological College, where he wrote his first major theological work, The Gospel and the Catholic Church. After parochial work in Boston (Lincolnshire) and Cambridge, he was appointed professor of divinity at Durham in 1940. In 1945 he published The Resurrection of Christ, and in 1949 The Glory of God and the Transfiguration of Christ-two profound biblical-theological works. By this time he was recognized as one of the outstanding modern Anglican theologians.

In 1950 he was appointed regius professor of divinity at Cambridge. Two years later he succeeded to the see of Durham, and was translated to York in 1956 and to Canterbury in 1961, continuing his theological writing alongside all his episcopal duties. An Anglo-Catholic himself, he showed sympathy for and understanding of other traditions, and committed himself to work for church unity. In 1964 he paid a visit to Pope Paul VI, and he created strong contacts with the Orthodox as well as the Free churches at home. In preaching and writing Ramsey has emphasized the importance of personal spirituality; has taken an uncompromising stand for social justice; and has proved himself a stable leader.

He retired upon his seventieth birthday in 1974.