Archbishop Of Canterbury Says Public Should Be ‘Open & Forgiving’ Of Prince Andrew Following Jeffrey Epstein Scandal

Of all the people to defend Prince Andrew following his infamous relationship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, we NEVER saw this one coming.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, aka the senior bishop and principal leader of the Church of England, Justin Welby, just asked the public to be “open and forgiving” to the controversial prince who was accused of trafficking and sexually abusing a teenager — Wtf?!

This week, the religious leader sat down for an interview on ITV News during which he claimed that the embattled royal is “seeking to make amends” after he settled a sexual abuse lawsuit brought forth by Virginia Giuffre. One of Jeffrey Epstein’s many victims, Virginia claimed for years that she was trafficked to Andrew, who had sex with her when she was only 17 years old. He settled for a reported £12 million but has denied any wrongdoing. He also said in a statement that he regretted his association with the convicted sex offender.

Related: Prince Andrew Has ANOTHER Sexual Assault Lawsuit Coming?

Well, the archbishop doesn’t seem worried about aligning himself with the Duke of York and instead used his interview time to encourage people to forgive the royal and “learn to be a more open and forgiving society.” The comments quickly raised eyebrows leading Justin to elaborate on what he meant in a statement to The Post, explaining:

“[I] was asked a question about forgiveness, and I said that there is a difference between consequences and forgiveness.”

Tying it all back to his beliefs, he continued:

“Both are essential elements of the Christian understanding of justice, mercy, and reconciliation. I also made the broader point that I hope we can become a more forgiving society.”

It’s one thing to be a “forgiving society” for simpler issues, but Prince Andrew is a high-profile member of the royal family who was accused of sexually assaulting a teenager. The legal trouble he found himself in was so serious that it lost him his royal and military titles. He has never admitted to wrongdoing, and yet the archbishop just wants everyone else to forgive and forget??

Related: Prince William & Kate Middleton SKIPPING Niece Lilibet’s Birthday Party

Digging his heels in further, the 66-year-old then blamed the public for distracting from Queen Elizabeth’s upcoming Platinum Jubilee while getting caught up in the controversy he started! He continued:

“These are complex issues that are difficult to address in a short media interview and I hope they do not distract from this week’s joyful celebration of Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.”

Wow. What a stance to take…

You can check out the archbishop’s full ITV News interview that sparked all this drama (below).

Do you agree with his take on this issue?!

[Image via British GQ/BBC News/YouTube]

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