Thursday, 25 November 2010

Colin Slee

Southwark Cathedral reports this morning

The Very Revd Colin Slee, The Dean of Southwark, died peacefully at his home surrounded by his family at 1am on Thursday 25 November.

Dean Colin had been diagnosed with cancer just a few weeks ago and the spread of his illness was very rapid.

May he rest in peace!

Updated Thursday afternoon (twice)

In The Guardian (CiF), Stephen Bates writes: Liberal Anglicans will mourn the death of Colin Slee

Damian Thompson blogs in the Daily Telegraph: The Church of England won’t be as much fun without Colin Slee

The news is also covered by local community site London-SE1 where it is noted that he had been suffering from pancreatic cancer.

There are now obituaries in The Guardian and The Telegraph.

Posted by Simon Kershaw on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 10:04am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England | News

That is just so sad and a real shock. We were at College together and he was one of the people that created hope for me about the Church of England.

Posted by: Robert Ellis on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 10:27am GMT

He will be sorely missed. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

Posted by: John C on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 11:11am GMT

Very sad and cruelly sudden news.

Posted by: rjb on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 11:38am GMT

I'm so sorry to hear this. Colin was a good man and a good advocate for the Church of England. His death is a sad loss not just to his family, but to Southwark Cathedral and the church at large.

Posted by: toby forward on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 12:11pm GMT

Colin was my chaplain at Kings - an immense and irrepressible, counter-cultural figure, unbowed by the system and a great inspiration to ordinands in that institution. Behind the scenes he was also tremendously pastoral and understanding and nursed many of us through the theological crises which, looking back, were the making of us.

In all of his subsequent roles he was exactly the same and, as others have said, a symbol of hope for a church which too often wants to play safe and fights shy of the maverick and risky. My goodness, we shall miss him greatly.

Posted by: Jonathan Jennings on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 12:29pm GMT

I remember when the Presiding Bishop of TEC was there recently and the wonderful things he said and did in hosting her during "Mitregate". This is very sad news indeed. Prayers ascending for him, his family, friends, and colleagues. May he rest in peace, and rise in glory.

Posted by: Brian on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 1:44pm GMT

We are the poorer, the Other Place is the richer.

Thank God for Colin, and all he meant to his family, the church, and so many of us who had the privilege of being with him in our earthly ministry.

May he rest in Peace, and Rise in Glory.

May his family know Gods cuddle.

Fr John

Posted by: Fr John on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 1:45pm GMT

Such a shock and so very sad.

Yes, a great encouragement and very much in the Southwark tradition of liberality , love and aliveness.

Also very much his own person too !

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 3:32pm GMT

I was at the Eucharist at Southwark at lunchtime. Very moving. He was a great man, always fighting other people's battles. I will miss him so much. May he rest in peace.

Posted by: Giles Fraser on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 4:02pm GMT

Colin also in his time at St. Albans Abbey started a year long scheme for ordinands, the Root Group.There must be at least 20 priests in the church who like myself went through that scheme. He was a considerable influence on me and his larger than life personality and outrageous sense of humour provided an example that blandness and conformity are not the model of a good priest.
Rest eternal grant unto him, O Lord.

Posted by: Duncan Swan on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 4:03pm GMT

May he rest in peace and rise one day with Christ in glory! AMEN!

This is a great loss to all in the Church who truly believe that we Christians, on the model of Jesus Christ, should be offering accptance and redemption to all human-kind - whether black or white, female or male, Gree or Jew, slave or free, straight or gay.

There are those in New Zealand, who wanted him to become one of our diocesan bishops last time around; but the bid failed - because of orchestrated clerical opposition to his stance on the Inlusivity' of the Anglican Churches around the world. It is possible that sheer hard work at Southwark - in defence of open-ness in the Church, that contributed to his early demise.

Ave Vale!

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 11:03pm GMT

Colin and Edith have friends all over the world, New Zealand included. We feel so far away and yet strangely close on the unwelcome news of Colin's illness and death. I have known him for nearly 25 years; a big man in every sense, a fine priest and loyal friend, he will be missed terribly.

Rest in peace and rise in glory my friend,
There's a tree in the garden, would you pick a lemon for the gin please? :-)

Posted by: Jonathan in New Zealand on Thursday, 25 November 2010 at 11:31pm GMT

A triple Requiem at Benidorm this morning for ordinand Chris Moxley, the husband of Elizabeth, the Rector of Aston Clinton; for the NZ miners, squaring the circle of Edith Slee's origins; and for Colin who had died only 9 hours earlier.

Decent enough Obituaries, thus far, but too much of Colin's so-called liberalism - and only in the Guardian a mention of his orthodoxy. Now that Colin has gone from us, perhaps the media will give him more credit as no mere rabble-rouser, but as someone who endlessly, and in the best tradition of the prophets, proclaimed truth at some considerable personal cost - and media pain.

A great loss to the Church and to the Diocese of Southwark, and to all who admired and loved him unconditionally.

Posted by: Peter Edwards on Friday, 26 November 2010 at 1:44am GMT

Perhaps Colin Slee's death is iconic.

Posted by: Pluralist on Friday, 26 November 2010 at 2:04am GMT

...and flights of angels sing him to his rest. I pray he *already* hears "Well done, good and faithful servant!"

Posted by: JCF on Friday, 26 November 2010 at 7:45am GMT

What terribly sad news! I grew to love Colin so much over the past ten or twelve years, whenever I visited our beautiful Southwark Cathedral. I was honoured to represent the nearby Guild of Registered Tourist Guides for the launch of the restoration Appeal Fund and the dedication of this great work, when I had the honour of meeting Lord and Lady Howe, Archbishop Tutu and Nelson Mandela. As a member of the Friends of Southwark Cathedral, I loved receiving his Christmas card. Charmian Griffiths, London Blue Badge Guide

Posted by: Charmian Griffiths on Friday, 26 November 2010 at 8:33am GMT

Colin blessed me and the rest of the St Albans Abbey Girl Guides before we set off to pitch our tents. It was unforgettable and an honour to be at the altar, feel his hand on our heads and hear him say "God bless you and keep you and have a good camp" as he moved along the line of blue uniforms...I wished I had met him again, admiring all I heard as i followed his career - instead I found myself canoeing in Doubtful Sound in New Zealand with Edith Slee. My love to Colin and his family.

Posted by: Suzy Edwards on Friday, 26 November 2010 at 9:12pm GMT

Big presence; his loss will be felt widely in the Church. I served with him for while as a central member of the CNC. The Telegraph has it quite wrong in its obituary. May he rest in peace.

Posted by: Anthony Archer on Saturday, 27 November 2010 at 10:24am GMT

I disagreed with his theology, but he was a least a conviction person and not a clerical careerist.

Posted by: Robert Ian williams on Saturday, 27 November 2010 at 1:05pm GMT

Very sad news. Colin was our next door neighbour when he lived in Norwich. My memories of him are very fond. How could you not like a man who called his cat Enoch!
May he rest in peace.

Posted by: Neil Warby on Saturday, 27 November 2010 at 3:58pm GMT

I was at school with Colin and we rowed together,and met occassionaly at reunions. He was a cheerful forthright chap who would never avoid answering an awkward question, which is a rare thing with clergy.
You rowed a good race-get those angels in L'Allegro.

Posted by: DAVID PAYNE on Monday, 29 November 2010 at 5:35pm GMT

I was on VSO with Colin in New Guinea - I have followed his life in the church since that time, and was shocked to open the Guardian this week. The Anglican church and its people, urgently need men and women like Colin who are prepared to say those things which need to be said to stop us speeding away from the way of Christ. My thoughts are with the family at this very sad time, but the Anglican church will also be a sadder place without him.

Posted by: Ruth Saunders on Monday, 29 November 2010 at 10:56pm GMT

How very sad - I have tremendous respect for the work Colin did and hope that many will be inspired by his example.

As it turns out, I was in London the week before he passed, and happened to spot the Archbishop of Canterbury (the hair is unmistakable, even from behind) dropping by the Provost's Lodging. It must have been a simple pastoral visit, between friends. Whatever my feelings about the ABC's positions, that act of kindness is deeply moving to me.

Well done, son of the good saint Nicholas. Well done you.

Posted by: Virginia Gibbs on Sunday, 5 December 2010 at 9:00pm GMT

We will miss a truly great man and Pastor who in his actions and his speech has taught and shown us the fundemental Christian message of the inclusivenss of all Creation and that love for one's neighbour is the only way.
A simple but difficult message not unlike the man himself.

Posted by: Chris Leigh on Tuesday, 7 December 2010 at 12:24pm GMT

Colin came on a business course I directed when he was rebuilding the conference centre at Southwark. He was magic. Provocative, supportive, a warm and loving presence with a sparkling wit and fine brain. He was one of our favourite participants of all time. His capability and loving just shone through.

Colin Slee was relevant and vibrant. The Anglican Church would do well to have more like him in leadership positions. I hope he has found his reward. RIP to an inspiring man.

Posted by: Jim McLaughlin on Friday, 29 April 2011 at 6:11pm BST
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