Archbishop of Canterbury Turns to Vendor for The Big Issue


The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has taken to the streets to experience life as a vendor for Big Issue. He sold the magazine at his pitch outside the Round Church in Cambridge, with local vendor, Lee Welham.

For the past six weeks, Welby has been in Cambridge on study leave. During this period, he started his friendship with Welham. The Big Issue is a life-changing magazine whose impact has been felt in the society. It is often said that buying and reading a copy of the magazine makes you inclusive of the change that you seek.

The archbishop sold five copies of the magazine, having spent 40 minutes with the vendor. While commenting on the magazine, Welby said that the Big Issue changes lives and the society in general. More so, each time one stops to have a conversation with a vendor, and then purchases a copy, that person becomes a part of the change.

In addition, he said that he is highly thankful for the opportunity to work with the 37 year old vendor. Also, he cherished the experience of selling The Big Issue. He continued;

 “When we look at the life and ministry of Jesus – who famously said he had no place to lay his head – it’s clear that homelessness is an issue that matters profoundly to God, and that tackling poverty together is the essential work of a society where every person is truly valued.”

In his response, Welham stated that it was dazzling to explain to the archbishop how the vendors are well treated. He affirmed that he has built a beautiful society. Interestingly, he said that everyone around where he sells makes it a duty to greet him every morning.

The director of sales and operations at The Big Issue, Chris Falchi-Stead, said that the sell-off experience was a perfect opportunity to reveal what it feels like to sell the magazine on the street everyday on a small scale. 

Also, he said that Welham is an excellent representative for The Bug Issue. This made it easy for him to show the archbishop sales tips and also share his experiences.

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