Tuesday, 6 May 2014
Canon Dr Robert Innes to be next Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe
Update After publication the text of this press release was amended with the struck-out text being replaced by the text shown (by me) in italics.
From the Archbishop of Canterbury
Canon Dr Robert Innes to be next Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe
Tuesday 6th May 2014
The next Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe will be the Revd Canon Dr Robert Innes, currently Senior Chaplain and Chancellor of the Pro-Cathedral of Holy Trinity Brussels.
Canon Inness will succeed the Rt Revd Dr Geoffrey Rowell, who retired in October.
The appointment has been made by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London and the Archbishop of Lokoja,
representing the Standing Committee of the Primates of the Anglican Communion a representative appointed by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates’ Meeting, in consultation with representatives elected by the diocese and the Central Members of the Crown Nominations Commission.
The appointment has been made by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London and the Archbishop of Lokoja, a representative appointed by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates’ Meeting, in consultation with representatives elected by the diocese and the Central Members of the Crown Nominations Commission.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Revd Justin Welby, said: “Robert Innes brings a wealth of invaluable experience and as such will make a fine successor to Geoffrey Rowell, under whose leadership the Diocese in Europe has flourished. The diocese is unique in the Church of England, covering a vast geographical area and serving in a myriad of varied circumstances. I am prayerfully expectant that under Robert’s leadership the diocese will continue to thrive and witness to the Kingdom of God.”
The Bishop of London, the Rt Revd Richard Chartres, said: “I very much look forward to deepening partnership in the gospel with Canon Innes both in Europe and in the House of Bishops and General Synod within the Church of England. His experience of sharing the gospel outside the UK will bring a wider perspective to the discussions of Bishops and Synod and his energy for mission is just right for the diocese at this time.”
Canon Innes was educated at Cambridge University. He worked for Arthur Andersen for a number of years before training for ministry at Cranmer Hall, Durham in 1998. He served his title in the Diocese of Durham whilst also working as a lecturer at St John’s College, Durham (1995 to 1999) after which he spent six years as Vicar of St Mary Magdalene, Belmont. He then moved to the Diocese of Gibraltar in Europe to become Senior Chaplain and Chancellor of the Pro-Cathedral of Holy Trinity, Brussels in 2005. He was additionally appointed a Chaplain to Her Majesty the Queen in 2012.
Canon Innes will be commissioned and consecrated on the 20th July 2014 at Canterbury Cathedral. He will be based in Brussels and work closely with the Diocesan Office in London.
Watch the new Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe speaking at St Pancras International station, London, on Thursday 1 May 2014.
The diocesan website has its own announcement: New Diocesan Bishop Appointed.
Posted by Peter Owen on
Tuesday, 6 May 2014 at 12:07pm BST
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Church of England
'The appointment has been made by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London and the Archbishop of Lokoja, representing the Standing Committee of the Primates of the Anglican Communion.'
Does the Standing Committee normally have a role in selecting bishops for this see? Or is this new?
@Jeremy: This appears be to an error. The Archbishop of Lokoja is not a Primate. The Constitution of the Diocese (Section 6) gives joint appointment authority to the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London, and the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council. I gather that the Archbishop of Lokoja is a member of the latter body.
The Archbishop of Lokoja is not even a member of the Anglican Consultative Council, let alone its Standing Committee. But he was chosen by the Standing Committee of the ACC to represent the ACC in this.
He was not chosen by the Primates Meeting or its standing committee.
The status of the Archbishop of Lokoja in the press release has been amended and he is now stated to be "a representative appointed by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates’ Meeting".
Where does he stand on the priestly ministry of women? Will he ordain them?
"...a representative appointed by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates’ Meeting."
One probably ought to assume that +Rowell was not chosen under these conditions.
Should one expect some re-start of the Instruments as background to this?
If this is a new method of selection, by whom was it sanctioned and why?
Clause 6 of the Diocesan Constitution originally dated 1995 and amended by General Synod in July 2006:
6 (a) The diocesan bishop shall be appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London and a person in episcopal orders nominated by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council, acting jointly.
(b) The Standing Committee of the Diocesan Synod, together with the diocesan members of the General Synod, shall act as the Vacancy in See Committee for the Diocese. It shall follow the Vacancy in See procedures as laid down by the General Synod for all the other dioceses.
(c) Before an appointment is made, a consultation shall take place between the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishop of London, the bishop nominated by the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council, the central members of the Crown Nominations Commission and those persons elected by the Standing Committee of the Diocesan Synod.
'Standing Committee of ACC' (2006) yet the language here is 'the Standing Committee of the Anglican Consultative Council and the Primates’ Meeting.'
From today's ACNS report
2014 Standing Committee Bulletin day 1 + 2
Archbishop Bernard Ntahoturi (Burundi) was re-elected as the member of the Crown Nominations Commission and Archbishop Thabo Makgoba (Southern Africa) was re-elected as the alternate. Archbishop Emmanuel Egbunu (a diocesan bishop in Nigeria) was also re-elected the Anglican Communion’s ‘constant member’ of the group that appoints the Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe.
For once I agree with Rev. Seitz and am wondering how the Primates Meeting got in on the act.
On the day this thread started, I tried to post a brief enquiry as to Dr. Innes's attitude to women priests, having seen no mention in the linked announcements or in his interview at St Pancras, but this didn't get past the moderators for some reason. The Church Times has him saying that he is a 'great supporter of women's ministry', but that particular phraseology is much used by people who don't agree with women priests but don't want to say so openly. I'd still like to know if Dr Innes will ordain women priests to serve in his diocese.
ED: sorry your original comment got into the spam folder. I have now retrieved it.
Re Dr Innes attitude to women etc... I believe that the Brussels chaplaincy is an International Church Society one. ICS have I am told the appalling (and quite possibly illegal) practice of 'inviting' wives of candidates for ICS chaplaincy posts to fill in application forms along with their husbands - which immediately pigeonholes married women into a role of basically supporting their husband's vocation rather than being allowed to have a professional vocation of their own. The fact that wives are 'invited' to do this is neither here nor there: it constitutes inappropriate emotional pressure and makes such wives feel (quite possibly correctly) that unless they do so their husbands will not be considered for a post. Unless Dr Innes distances himself from such an evil practice and makes it clear that it will no longer be tolerated in his diocese (which is quite possible given his episcopal powers) - then his ICS links make me feel that his attitude to women seeking to exercise an ordained ministry of their own is likely to be less than affirming.
Goodness Clare. An "evil practice". Having applied for an ICS post in the past, no, spouses are not invited to fill in an application form. There are a number of ICS churches with female clergy, including incumbents.
If this practice did exist, do you object because of the assumption it is a wife, or because you object to the formal involvement of the spouse (of either gender) in the process? I would have thought it rather a good idea to involve the spouse. Are the couple not a team in ministry? Leaving home, going to a different culture, leaving friends and family. ICS have an annual Chaplains and Families Conference (spouses of both genders) - good idea I think.
Thank you Clare for confirming that I am not alone in my suspicions. I do hope that Dr Innes does not turn out to be 'The ICS Bishop of Gibraltar in Europe'. It makes it worse when people issue misleading statements implying support for women priests, when the opposite is the case. People have got elected to Synods in the past using similar weasel words.
Claire's use of the word "evil" in this instance is highly inappropriate. Such a strong word as "evil" must surely only be used in extreme circumstances.
The following paragraph was taken from the current ICS website:
"How to apply for a vacancy for a permanent chaplain
•Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for an information pack or you can download the information sheets about the post and forms below.
•Applications need to be made on our standard application (and Information about spouse, if applicable) forms which can be found under Standard documents.
•If a specific form is needed for a particular post or diocese these will be found under the relevant Post-related documents list.
• Enhanced disclosure will be required."
It would certainly suggest that the information I was previously given ie that spouses are 'invited' to fill in some sort of form has a degree of accuracy.
I object to the evil practice whether it is female or male spouses - although the ordination of women to the priesthood has in fact led to the decrease in such practices in the Church of England in general (it is reckoned that churches cannot make assumptions about male spouses in the way that they tried to do previously about female spouses). As a clergy spouse myself of many years standing I have experienced several attempts to try and assess or interview me when my husband applied for positions. I have found that parishes/groups that seek to do that are generally not remotely interested in my own professional or Christian vocation - they are merely interested in whether I am a suitable clergy wife, and have sometimes made clear their disapproval of my working professionally on a full time basis.
I have also had several years direct experience myself of working with a C of E mission agency (not ICS) which used such techniques to treat wives of clergy in ways that were humiliating and degrading. 'Evil' is one of the milder terms I use to describe such practices: I am quite prepared also to use the word 'demonic' to speak of them. Apart from the undesirability of the practice and the way it can create tension between husband and wife, it is the basic dishonesty of the process to which I object. If there is any vestige of the practice still continuing in ICS , then unless the society changes this practice immediately, in my view the new bishop needs to distance himself from it by refusing licences for ICS clergy to work in his diocese.
Again, may I strongly object to the way in which the word "evil" is being used in this thread. To employ its use in such a context is surely to debase its currency?
Thanks for clarifying. The information about spouse ICS asks for is just that, information. Their application forms were identical to other dioceses I filled in three years ago.
I understand your reservations. The CofE swings on a pendulum with spouses I think. In some parishes, my wife and I found there were unhealthy expectations, that she would just do exactly what the previous vicar's wife had done. When the spouse works outside the home, or indeed cares for very young children, that's not always possible. Unfortunately, the instutional church sometimes swings too far in response, treating ministry as a profession like any other, which the spouse can be entirely separate from. I'm always delighted when parishes want to know about my wife's faith and gifts, as long as they understand that we need to work out for ourselves how those will be exercised in particular situations.
I think the Diocese in Europe would collapse without ICS. Just under half of the churches have support from ICS, including many of the bigger congregations.
ICS is Not the Patron of Holy Trinity, Brussels