2023 Lambeth Awards honor work by 33 individuals in eight countries

Posted Jun 22, 2023

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby (center) joins those who received the 2023 Lambeth Awards at Lambeth Palace on June 22. Photo: Jason Bye

[Lambeth Palace] Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby on June 22 announced the 33 recipients of the 2023 Lambeth Awards, which are given to people within the Church of England, the wider Anglican Communion, other Christian churches, as well as to those of other faiths and none. Recipients are recognized for contributions to community service, worship, evangelism, interfaith cooperation, ecumenism and education. The current Lambeth Awards began in 2016.

This year’s recipients include poets, educators, activists, clergy and peacemakers, as well as many unsung people who have dedicated their working lives to the promotion of faith and in the service of God’s witness. Those recognized in these awards have worked, or continue to work, in New Zealand, Egypt, Russia, Italy, Australia, the United States and the Solomon Islands, as well as the United Kingdom.

The archbishop presented the awards at a ceremony at Lambeth Palace for the recipients, their families and their colleagues, and it was followed by a special service of Evening Prayer. Announcing the awards, the archbishop said, “We live in a troubled world, where all around us we see conflict, war, discrimination, division, poverty and deep inequality, but our faith in Jesus gives us hope.  We see that hope exemplified in the wonderful service of the people we have recognized today.

“Many of the people who have received awards today have worked unseen and unsung, striving for justice, peace, reconciliation, advances in education, worship and prayer.  Not all are followers of Jesus Christ, but, through their endeavors, they have made significant contributions to the mutual respect and maintenance of human dignity, which is so vital to spiritual and social health and the flourishing of mankind. The Lambeth Awards shine a light on their outstanding efforts and dedication.”

Among this year’s recipients are:

George Barber, Stockton-on-Tees, England: Thomas Cranmer Award for Worship
For sustained excellence over 57 years in his service to church music in Stockton-on-Tees and in the Durham Diocese.

Brother Christopher John, Society of St Francis, Australia: Dunstan Award for Prayer and the Religious Life
For a lifetime of outstanding service through SSF across the Anglican Communion. Recently received a Ph.D. in Peace and Conflict Studies.

The Ven. Hirini Kaa, New Zealand: The Lanfranc Award for Education and Scholarship.
For outstanding service as a Church Historian and Educator and for outstanding scholarship in the research and publication of the award-winning book, “Te Hahi Mihinare – the Maori Anglican Church,” chronicling the struggle to establish the Maori Church and the appointment of the first Maori Bishop.

The Rev. John Kafwanka Kaoma: Cross of St. Augustine for Services to the Anglican Communion
For his outstanding leadership in the Anglican Communion as Director for Mission at the Anglican Communion Office. Originally from Zambia, Canon Kafwanka now lives in England.

Professor Amy-Jill Levine, Ph.D., United States of America: Hubert Walter Award for Reconciliation and Interfaith Cooperation.
For developing awareness about Jesus’ Jewish identity and the Jewish contexts of the New Testament, and for unflagging education efforts in church and popular settings.

Clair Malik, Cairo, Egypt:  Lanfranc Award for Education and Scholarship
For committing her whole life to the Education of Special Needs Children, especially the hearing impaired in Egypt.

Robert W. Radtke, United States of America: The Cross of St Augustine for Services to the Anglican Communion
For outstanding leadership in the Anglican Communion in the areas of humanitarian relief and social development, including leading Episcopal Relief & Development since 2005 and playing a leading catalytic role in the formation of the Anglican Alliance.

Mrs. Margaret Riordan-Eva, MA, England:  Canterbury Cross for Services to the Church of England
For outstanding voluntary service as calligrapher to two Archbishops of Canterbury and to Lambeth Palace.

George Verwer, United States of America:  Alphege Award for Evangelism and Witness
For outstanding services to Christian ministry and evangelism.  Born in 1938, Mr. Verwer spent his entire Christian life committed to the idea that everyone in the world needs to hear the gospel message at least once.  Sadly, since being nominated for the Award, Mr. Verwer has died. His daughter received his award at Lambeth Palace.

The full list of award recipients is here.