Sally Axworthy

Sally Axworthy

Ambassador to the Holy See

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6th December 2017 Holy See

Sr. Patricia Ebegbulem, SSL

African Coordinator of ANHAT & Talitha Kum

The fight to end human trafficking: Nigerian women religious’ perspective

To mark the UN-led 16 Days of Activism to End Violence against Women and Girls, the British Embassy to the Holy See is delighted to introduce you to Sr. Patricia Ebegbulem, whose network of religious sisters in Nigeria is trying to make a reality of the UN’s theme “Leave no-one behind” for modern slavery victims […]

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18th September 2017 Holy See

Sally Axworthy

by Sally Axworthy

Ambassador to the Holy See

Sport at the Holy See

On Sunday, I took part in the Via Pacis marathon, a 21km or 5km run for peace around Rome (I did the 5K option!) taking in not just churches but also a mosque and a synagogue, and organised jointly by the Rome city council, thePontifical Council for Culture, Muslim and Jewish representatives. Last year, the Vatican explained its […]

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26th May 2017 Holy See

Professor Sir Michael Rawlins MD, FRCP, FMedSC

Former Chair of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)

An Audience with Pope Francis

©AP

We were privileged, on 18 May 2017, to attend a Papal Audience at which Pope Francis gave his love and support for patients and families with Huntington’s disease (HD). Also present were their carers and advocates as well as researchers striving to find treatments and cures for this devastating disease. HD is a genetic disorder […]

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23rd April 2017 Holy See

Stephen Townsend

Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy to the Holy See

St George’s Day: 23 April

©Martin Beek, all rights reserved

How did St George become the Patron Saint of England? He never visited the country, and his most famous exploit is a myth.  Yet, despite that St George has become of the more popular saints, and is patron of Portugal, Malta and Georgia as well as England. Not much definite is known about St George. […]

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20th March 2017 Holy See

Sally Axworthy

by Sally Axworthy

Ambassador to the Holy See

Helping the Homeless at the Vatican

Last week I, Dame Louise Casey and Neil O’Connor of the UK Department for Communities and Local Government had the honour of visiting the Vatican Almonry  to find out about how the Vatican helps the homeless. Dame Louise is something of a legend for her efforts to tackle homelessness, help troubled families and promote integration […]

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13th March 2017 Holy See

Stephen Townsend

Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy to the Holy See

The Commonwealth and the Holy See

The Commonwealth and the Holy See represent the two largest soft power networks in the world.  The Holy See has over 1.2 billion faithful globally, and a network of Bishops, NGOs and religious congregations which reach deep into the societies of the countries where they live.  The Commonwealth is made up of 52 countries with […]

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6th March 2017 Holy See

Sally Axworthy

by Sally Axworthy

Ambassador to the Holy See

International Women’s Day: Sisters are Doing it for Themselves

We usually think of the Catholic Church as a male-dominated organisation because priests staff the hierarchy. But, as I have been discovering in my first six months in Rome, women play an important role in the Church. Indeed there are nearly twice as many religious sisters (800,000) as there are Catholic priests (around 400,000) – […]

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1st March 2017 Holy See

Stephen Townsend

Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy to the Holy See

St David and the Church in Wales

Today is St. David’s Day, a special day for the United Kingdom, and for Wales in particular. St David is the best known of the Welsh saints. It is often said that Pope Gregory the Great sent St Augustine in 595 to bring Christianity to Britain.  But that is not correct.  After the Romans left […]

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15th February 2017 Holy See

Sally Axworthy

by Sally Axworthy

Ambassador to the Holy See

Tackling Modern Slavery together

Last week Offer Stern-Weiner, Head of the Modern Slavery Unit at the Home Office,  and I journeyed out of Rome to visit a small and tranquil convent in a historic town set in the beautiful Italian countryside. The reason we were there? To meet five young Nigerian women who had been trafficked from Nigeria to […]

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1st February 2017 Holy See

Stephen Townsend

Deputy Head of Mission

Ecumenism in Music

Last week saw the visit of the choir of Westminster Abbey, for a joint concert with the Sistine Chapel Choir.  This was a wonderful concert, with the two choirs combining to fill the Basilica of St John Lateran with music from both the Catholic and Anglican traditions:  pieces by Giovanni Palestrina showcased the  Catholic style, […]

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About Sally Axworthy

Sally is currently British Ambassador to the Holy See. She took up her position in Rome in September 2016, after 5 years at the Foreign Office as Head of Somalia…

Sally is currently British Ambassador to the Holy See. She took up her position in Rome in September 2016, after 5 years at the Foreign Office as Head of Somalia Unit (2011-2013), and then as Joint Head of North Africa Department (2013-2016). She spent most of that time on the UK initiative to help Somalia emerge from civil war; and to establish a Government of National Unity in Libya.

Sally joined the FCO in 1986. Her career has taken her to Russia, Ukraine, Germany, and India. From 2001-2006 she worked at a government regional office in south west England on providing services to vulnerable adults.

Sally is married to Michael, an academic specialising in Iran, and they have four children. When in the UK, they live in Cornwall where Sally enjoys walking and running (very slowly) in the rain and the fog.

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