On the eve of the vital United Nations General Assembly meeting on Millennium Development Goals in New York, the Archbishop of Canterbury has underlined the firm commitment of the Anglican Church to continue to work for the eradication of poverty.
In a video message released on 24 September 2008, the Archbishop has backed calls for a renewal of the pledges made by the international community in 2000, and spoke of the need for the Anglican Church to work in harmony with governments and NGOs around the world in order to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015:
Dr Williams declares: "Much of the work that's being done by the Anglican Church covers very comprehensively the Millennium Development Goals. We want to anchor that work in worldwide co-operation. We want to do that work in synergy with those governments and NGOs who are working for the same end. And we want to let Governments and NGOs know that we are there and we are ready."
He adds: "Let this meeting in New York be an occasion where the consciences and the hearts of all are truly touched and changed, turned towards the needs of the poorest, turned towards the recognition that we have it in our hands to make a difference"
The video message follows on from the manifesto that was formally handed to Gordon Brown PM at the conclusion of the Walk of Witness during the Lambeth Conference of worldwide Anglican bishops in July 2008.
In the manifesto the bishops of the Anglican Communion urged that: "When they meet in New York at the United Nations on 25th September, world leaders must find greater political commitment to addressing poverty and inequality."
It adds: "A timetable for achieving the MDGs by 2015 needs to be created. Our leaders need to invest in and strengthen their partnership with the Church worldwide, so that its extensive delivery network for education and health care, alongside other faiths, is fully utilised in the eradication of extreme poverty."
The video message can be viewed here, on the Lambeth Palace YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/lambethpress