Today the entire world mourns the death of Desmond Tutu, former Anglican archbishop in southern Africa, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, moral leader of a democratic South Africa, and our generation’s strongest Christian voice for peace and justice. I considered it a tremendous honor that he accepted our invitation to come to the Diocese of Maryland shortly after my consecration as bishop in 2008 to bless our burgeoning efforts to repair the damage of centuries of racial injustice, leading to the naming of the Diocesan Truth and Reconciliation Commission. He’s been a spiritual father and inspiration to me for decades, and I cited him and the Dalai Lama in a recent Christmas message as the world’s two greatest living prophets of joy. Even in our bereavement over his passing away, we rejoice in believing that all of heaven is laughing and dancing with Archbishop Tutu in God’s loving and joy-filled presence for eternity.

Bishop Sutton’s 2021 Message for Advent and Christmas