Trevor Huddleston

Isabelle Kapoian

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Trevor Huddleston Biography

Father Trevor Huddleston was born on June 15th of 1933 in Bedford, England. After completeing his secondary education he enrolled into Lancing College, which was a part of Oxford University from 1927 to 1931, then studied theology at Wells Theological College.
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Trevor Huddleston joined the Community of the Resurrection which was an Anglican religious order, and took his vows of priesthood in 1941. In 1943 he was sent by the Community of the Resurrection on a mission to Johannesburg, South Africa, and ministered in the African townships.
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After the passing of the Group Areas Act in 1950, Huddleston became involved in protests against the forced removals of the inhabitants of Sophiatown, which was his entrance into being a more active participant in the anti-apartheid scene.
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Father Huddleston’s notoriety in the African’s liberation movement made him a target for the government, so Huddleston returned to England where he wrote and published Naught for your Comfort. In 1959, Huddleston formed the Anti-Apartheid Movement (AAM). Huddleston was consecrated as various Bishops until in 1983 he retired from the Episcopal office.

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Huddleston then focused only on the anti-apartheid movement:

  • He led an AAM delegation to meet Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
  • Huddleston addressed the United Nations Special Committee Against Apartheid
  • In 1987 he organized the Harare International Conference on ‘Children, Repression and the Law in Apartheid’
  • In 1988 Huddleston initiated the ‘Nelson Mandela Freedom at 70’ campaign
  • Participated in the ‘Nelson Mandela Freedom March’
  • Huddleston and Archbishop Desmond Tutu addressed a rally at Hyde Park
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Huddleston became the founder and president of Action for Southern Africa (ACTSA), which was the successor to the AAM. Father Huddleston died on April 20, 1998 from a heart attack. His ashes were placed next to the Church of Christ the King in Sophiatown.

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Trevor Huddleston Significance to the Anti-Apartheid Movement

Huddleston's working with the poor blacks in Johannesburg allowed him to be able to sympathize with the and identify with the anti-apartheid movement. While in the slum of Sophiatown in Johannesburg, he preached that segregation was immoral and urged for equality between the races. During his 12 years there he tended to the community, spreading the word of Christ, being an educational leader, and setting up homeless shelters and feeding programs which aided the lives of those in the area. He gained the trust of the Africans there and positively impacted their lives by raising their standard of living. While in Africa he worked closely with Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo, influencing them and their view of the anti-apartheid struggle. As a white man in South Africa having such great passion towards the anti-apartheid movement, he brought hope and new perspective to the Africans he inspired and led.During the forced removals of those in Sophiatown he became a major voice against apartheid. His speeches rallied members of the movement to harass the apartheid policies of the government, so much so that he believed that he had become a government target and left South Africa.

Even after he left South Africa, his published book, "Naught for Your Comfort" greatly protested the apartheid system. 250,000 copies of it were sold and the notoriety that it received internationally brought light to apartheid and to the anti-apartheid movement, especially in Britain. This marked the beginning of Huddleston's international fight against apartheid. He was the founding member of the Anti Apartheid Movement and served as its Vice President and then President. The Anti Apartheid Movement which was at the center of the international anti apartheid campaign. He was also the founding patron of Action for Southern Africa which was its successor. While out of South Africa he worked closely with Desmond Tutu, influencing him greatly. His work in these organizations spread the message of anti apartheid internationally. They garnered the support and sympathy of many around the world and allowed the anti-apartheid movement to expand much greater than it would have from a center in the more remote and less communicative South Africa.

His work helped to bring together different leaders, countries, and people to help unite and strengthen the anti-apartheid movement. He is known to this day as one of the most influential white members of the anti-apartheid movement.

A Prayer for Africa by Trevor Huddleston

"God bless Africa

Guide our children

Guard our leaders

And give us peace

For Jesus Christ's sake. Amen"

Archbishop Trevor Huddleston Speech



"A Prayer for Africa by Trevor Huddleston." Church of the Good Shepherd- Protea. Web. 12 Nov. 2015.

"Archbishop Trevor Huddleston." Action for Southern Africa. Web. 16 Nov. 2015.

"Father Trevor Huddleston." South African History Online. Web. 15 Nov. 2015.

Pace, Eric. "Archbishop Trevor Huddleston, 84, Dies; Fought Apartheid From Its Earliest Days." The New York Times. The New York Times, 20 Apr. 1998. Web. 15 Nov. 2015.