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Statement from Presiding Bishop Michael Curry on the passing of Archbishop Desmond Tutu

December 26, 2021
Office of Public Affairs
(Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

With the passing of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a true friend, colleague, and mentor—and a genuinely humble, great soul—has gone before us. He has passed through the gate of death into the arms of the God who gave him life.

While on this earth, he sought to follow Jesus of Nazareth in God’s way of love and life. In so doing, he showed us how to live God’s dream as children of the one God and creator of all.

So, even in our sorrow that he is no longer walking among us, we can thank God that he did.

Perhaps we best give thanks by honoring his legacy—not merely with lip service to racial justice and reconciliation, but with lives dedicated to this work. We do this by learning to live together as the children and family of God, no longer hurting each other or God’s creation, but together living the dream God intended. For in God’s dream, as the Hebrew prophet Isaiah said, “they will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.”

To borrow from a friend who texted me on Archbishop Tutu’s passing, may the knowledge of his life and heart keep us all strong, good, kind, and loving.

May he rest in peace and rise in glory. 

The Most Rev. Michael Bruce Curry
Presiding Bishop and Primate
The Episcopal Church