Archbishop William Temple

Archbishop William Temple (1881-1944) was a remarkable and influential man. As a school, we should be very proud to be named after him. He was bishop of Manchester, then Archbishop of York before becoming Archbishop of Canterbury in 1942.

When he became Archbishop of Canterbury, the country was facing many difficulties, especially the continued threat of Nazi aggression. At that very dark time during the Second World War many people were expecting and fearing a Nazi invasion, and Archbishop Temple was a leader who encouraged people to hope.

Archbishop Temple also publically supported Jewish people at a time when anti Semitism was widespread, and the persecution of the Jews under Hitler was at its height. He co-founded an organisation called the Council of Christians and Jews (CCJ) which is still a powerful organisation supporting interfaith dialogue.

However, Archbishop Temple is probably best known for his work for social justice. He believed in the rights of all people, whether they are rich or poor. He also was a driving force for the 1944 Education Act, which provided free education to all children.

So as a school we are named after a very special person, and we would do well to remember his work to bring about justice to different groups of people. But his life’s work was firmly based in his Christian faith. He summed up his beliefs, and that of other Christians, in these words.

“My worth is what I am worth to God; and that is a great deal, for Christ died for me.”

“My worth is what I am worth to God; and that is a great deal, for Christ died for me.”

Archbishop William Temple