From the Anglican Communion Office, London
The 2008 Lambeth Conference involved the participation of some 680 bishops and 3000 participants overall. From Cathedral to parishes and volunteers all over the UK, support for 2008 meeting was indeed generous.
With a budget of £5.6 million, and in common with previous Conferences, the projection of a deficit in the immediate period following the Conference was always recognised. For an international conference on this scale and taking into account the places from which the participants travelled, England continues to be the most economical place to hold such a gathering and a university campus the most financially viable.
Successful fund raising has been taking place as planned, before, during and following the Conference, including raising bursaries for the participation of almost 40% of the bishops from developing countries.
Bishops were notified of the current financial position during the conference, and the possibility raised with them that there might have to be further approaches for assistance with the costs of the Conference at this stage, the shortfall in funding is unclear as bills come in to be settled, but it is likely to be approaching £1 million.
The shortfall is being addressed as agreed by the continuing fund raising programme, and we are grateful for the assistance of the Archbishop’s Council of the Church of England in supporting the cash flow of the Conference company as the fundraising continues around the Communion.
The Revd Canon Kenneth Kearon
Secretary General, The Anglican Communion,
Director, The Lambeth Company