Monday, 9 July 2007

GS: Monday morning

Monday morning started with the Archbishop of York’s presidential address on the theme “Do Not be Afraid” - online here and here.

The First and Third Church Estates Commissioners (Andreas Whittam Smith and Timothy Walker) made a presentation on the commissioners’ report for 2006.

Diocesan Synod motion on the Church Commissioners

Mr Adrian Greenwood moved on behalf of the Southwark Diocesan Synod.

That this Synod request an urgent review by the Archbishops’ Council of the status and accountability of the Church Commissioners.

Mrs April Alexander (Southwark) moved as an amendment.

Delete all words after “That this Synod” and insert

“request:

(a) the Archbishops’ Council to prepare an independent report to the Synod on the Church Commissioners’ own proposal that there should be a General Synod Select Committee on the Parliamentary model to facilitate their further accountability to the Synod, having due regard to:
i. representation of the House of Laity on the Select Committee; and
ii. the interest of the Synod in the major investment and disinvestment decisions of the Assets Committee;

(b) the Ethical Investment Advisory Group to prepare a report to the Synod on the feasibility of advising the Church Commissioners on the ethical implications of their major decisions in the purchase, sale and management of land and real estate and on the EIAG’s recommendations for making this advice effective, acceptable and within the spirit of the Commissioners’ own policy statements; and

(c) both to report back by July 2008”.

Even though Mr Greenwood supported this amendment it was defeated by 110 votes to 93. The unamended motion was then put to the vote and clearly defeated on a show of hands.

Background papers from the diocese of Southwark and the Church Commissioners.

Disability issues for ministry in the Church of England

The Revd John Naudé made a presentation on disability issues for ministry in the Church of England.

Background paper GS 1663.

The Bishop of Sheffield moved:

That this Synod affirm the value of the contribution made by disabled clergy in the life and witness of the Church of England and its commitment to and support for their ministry by asking dioceses to:

(a) take note of the report Disabled clergy in the Church of England and the outcome of this debate;

(b) ensure that a “lead” person on disability issues is appointed in each diocese and that appropriate training is made available; and

(c) ensure that disability issues are made an integral part of the functioning of diocesan structures.

The Revd Stephen Lynas (Bath & Wells) moved two amendments:

Leave out the words “disabled clergy” and insert “clergy with disabilities”.

At the end of paragraph (c) insert “, particularly Diocesan Advisory Committees and Parsonage Boards”.

Both amendments were carried so that the substantive motion became:

That this Synod affirm the value of the contribution made by clergy with disabilities in the life and witness of the Church of England and its commitment to and support for their ministry by asking dioceses to:

(a) take note of the report Disabled clergy in the Church of England and the outcome of this debate;

(b) ensure that a “lead” person on disability issues is appointed in each diocese and that appropriate training is made available; and

(c) ensure that disability issues are made an integral part of the functioning of diocesan structures, particularly Diocesan Advisory Committees and Parsonage Boards.

The amended motion was overwhelmingly carried.

Posted by Peter Owen on Monday, 9 July 2007 at 1:00pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: General Synod
Comments

Sentamu's address is excellent, I've permalinked it.

It is probably worth reading every day for a week as it covers a lot of ground with very worthy biblical examples and interpretations.

A core message that came through was we need to engage with the world. (Remembering the expression from the US last year: "We are called to be in the world but not of the world").

I also loved the idea that we don't necessarily need to have great faith, but faith in a great God.

After the 2005 Pakistan earthquake, a sermon referred to 1 Corinthians 13:2 "If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing."

One thing that I have always been grateful is that none of the major events have come at my behest. (Although I confess to praying that God and Gaia veer Katrina slightly when it became clear they had not evacuated New Orleans. Similarly I confess to meekly suggesting that since God and Gaia had parked Wilma over Mexico for three days that it would be really cool if it did go to Florida. I then did pray that the next hurricane season be normal so that they did not break peoples' spirit too much, or they become blase about these acts like they have about horror and thriller movies).

There have been times were there has been an orchestrated dance, but it was Gaia and others (with God's permission) spontaneously offering their own affirmations. Their enthusiasm has been embarassing at times, but it comes from them and not myself. They were gifts of love as well as a warning that God and Gaia need our help.

Kennedy once said to the US citizens, ask not what your country can do for you, but rather what you can do for your country. That could be paraphrased, "ask not what God can do for you, but rather what you can do for God".

God needs patient courageous faithful friends.

I loved the poem Sentamu chose. God needs friends, no matter how cracked or dirty their cup, God has the capacity to fill it with light sufficient for their needs and Gods works. We have a great God.

Posted by: Cheryl Clough on Monday, 9 July 2007 at 11:03pm BST
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