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Vicar of Baghdad receives degree in Gloucestershire
Canon Andrew White by a blasted wall in Iraq
Canon White's church is surrounded by barricades and razor wire

The man known as 'the Vicar of Baghdad' is "very grateful" for the honorary degree he has received from the University of Gloucestershire.

Canon Andrew White, who is the vicar of the only Anglican church in Iraq, has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy in recognition of his work.

He said it was a particular honour to be recognised by a University "held very highly" in the Anglican community.

The University wanted to award his 'outstanding' work of reconciliation.

'Very dangerous'

Talking to BBC Radio Gloucestershire's Richard Atkins he described his home church of St Georges in Baghdad as being nothing like a church in Gloucestershire.

"It's surrounded by bomb barricades and razor wire," he said.

"I'm surrounded by 35 security guards, who are actually Iraqi soldiers, who are with me 24/7.

"It's very dangerous for our people. I've had 107 people killed in the past three weeks in my community."

Canon White was ordained in 1990 and in 1998 was appointed a canon at Coventry Cathedral.

Since then he has also been director of International Ministry and headed up the International Centre for Reconciliation.

Honorary Awards

Canon Andrew White
He received his Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy in Gloucestershire

In 2005, The Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East was established as part of his reconciliation work in Iraq and the Middle East.

The University of Gloucestershire annually confers Honorary Awards on individuals who have made a sustained or outstanding contribution locally, nationally or internationally.

These Awards are given to recognise those who have achieved distinction in a particular field, or given distinguished service to Gloucestershire, the Church or the University.

This year honorary awards have also been given to Douglas Coombes, Mavis Lady Dunrossil, Philip Lane, PJ Crook, Patricia E J Wiltshire-Hawksworth, Paul Cullen, Dr Juliet Williams and Peter Williams.


Canon Andrew White was interviewed by Richard Atkins. Hear the full interview on BBC Radio Gloucestershire's Sunday Breakfast show from 0700 GMT on Sunday, 5th December.




SEE ALSO
Vicar flees Baghdad after threats
11 Jul 07 |  Middle East
Profile: Canon Andrew White
30 May 07 |  UK
Canon working to free UK hostage
29 Sep 04 |  Coventry/Warwickshire

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