Thursday, 30 April 2015

West Yorkshire and the Dales to get another bishop

The Diocese of West Yorkshire and the Dales announced yesterday that it is to get another suffragan bishop in addition to the four it already has.

New Suffragan Bishop for the Diocese

In a move designed to add necessary capacity to the diocese’s leadership, the See of Richmond (which has been dormant since 1921) is to be revived to enable the appointment of a Suffragan Bishop for the diocese. The Bishop will mainly cover the Bishop of Leeds’ work in the Leeds Episcopal Area, working with clergy and parishes, and will occasionally deputise for Bishop Nick, who will remain Area Bishop of Leeds.

Bishop Nick says, “The need for this post is both urgent and pragmatic. After nine months it’s become apparent that it is not possible for one person to do the three jobs that my current role entails, ie., Diocesan Bishop of a very large diocese, Area Bishop of Leeds as well as the strategic leadership of the setting up of a brand new diocese (to say nothing of the national and international responsibilities carried by a diocesan bishop). This will free me up to attend to the macro work of the diocese (and help speed up the process of transition) as well as giving the Leeds Area the full attention it needs.

“We argued from the beginning that, at least for the first few years of this new diocese, the Diocesan Bishop would not have the capacity to also be the Area Bishop of Leeds. I’m glad that the validity of that argument has now been recognised.

“Because of the urgency, we need someone who can begin quickly, who knows the structures and complexity of the diocese and is someone whom I can trust, so the process for this appointment will be expedited, with a view to the person appointed starting in the summer or autumn.”

The reviving of the See of Richmond has received the full support of the Bishop’s Council and has been agreed by the Archbishop of York, the Dioceses Commission and the Church Commissioners. The post will be paid for by the Church Commissioners; the only cost to the diocese will be housing.

The appointment will be made under Common Tenure (ie. it won’t be time limited), but when the post is eventually vacated, the Diocesan Bishop would need to petition the Dioceses Commission to refill it, if appropriate.

Posted by Peter Owen on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 8:23am BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England

"someone whom I can trust" Bishop Nick

Shouldn't that go without saying?! Or is there a risk of getting an untrustworthy one? Having said that, the statement reads as though they all know precisely who it's going to be already.

Posted by: Laurence Cunnington on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 8:50am BST

Why did General Synod not leave things as they were? The three Dioceses worked well and Wakefield never wanted this new scheme which was supposed to save money!

Posted by: Jean Mayland (Revd) on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 11:27am BST

Goodness, isn't reviving dormant sees in fashion?! Chartres wants a sixth suffragan, Baines gets a fifth! Also, "someone who can begin quickly, who knows the structures and complexity of the diocese and is someone whom I can trust, so the process for this appointment will be expedited" does read a lot like a massive stitch-up. Business as usual from the House of Bishops then.

Posted by: DBD on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 11:45am BST

Since appointing a woman would be an excellent trick to distract from flagrant insider-ism; a few papabile from the 'senior staff' include:

-Anne Dawtry, Archdeacon of Halifax since 2011
-Andi Hofbauer, Canon at Wakefield since 2009
-Elizabeth Sewell, Canon at Ripon since 2013
-Veronica James, Women's Ministry advisor in Ripon area, Rector of HT Skipton

Posted by: DBD on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 12:49pm BST

Is this correct: before - 3 diocesans, 2 suffragans. After - 1 diocesan 5 suffragans. Still the same number of archdeacons? Has the number of parish clergy changed?

from recent stats (Ripon, Bradford, Wakefield summed for Leeds figures)

Population 000s
Leeds 2687. Carlisle 489. Derby 1017. Lichfield 2018

Area sq miles
Leeds 2836. Carlisle 2477. Derby 997. Lichfield 1744

FT clerics
Leeds 316. Carlisle 116. Derby 136. Lichfield 275

People per FT cleric
Leeds 8503. Carlisle 4215. Derby 7478. Lichfield 7338

Sq miles per FT cleric
Leeds 9. Carlisle 21. Derby 7. Lichfield 6

FT clerics per bishop
Leeds 53, Carlisle 58. Derby 136. Lichfield 69

Posted by: Fr William on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 7:24pm BST

We are awash with bishops in the Church of England not least in the Diocese of London. They are all of course very busy, try getting an appointment to see one. Still it's good news for hard-pressed clerical outfitters.

Posted by: Nicholas Henderson on Thursday, 30 April 2015 at 10:44pm BST

More bishops = more money from the faithful to support. Perhaps the national and international responsibilities should be axed and more effort put into making sure there are enough faithful. Pure claptrap!

Posted by: Joseph Golightly on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 8:11am BST

I was under the impression that "missional" Archdeacons were the answer to all our problems, as they seem to be growing in number at an alarming rate. Mind, I did hear tell that the Bishop of Chelmsford would like to eventually transform all seven of his Archdeacons (recently expanded from four) into bishops. We await, with bated breath, to see if London gets the go-ahead for yet another bishop for Islington and Church Plants and also the identity of the Conservative Evangelical who will occupy the restored See of Maidstone.

Posted by: Father David on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 8:42am BST

DBD's list of candidates is interesting, but there is one obvious woman from WY&D who towers above any of them: Janet Henderson. She was a superb Archdeacon of Richmond under the old dispensation; intellectually able; deeply perceptive; pastorally gifted; strategically focussed; and isn't intimidated by Archbishops (especially Welsh ones, when she was messed around and resigned as Dean of Llandaff after only a few months in post). She is a person of great integrity and creativity. In fact, I read in Nick Baines' criteria for the new Bishop of Richmond precisely the skill set Janet possesses.

Posted by: Will Richards on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 9:16am BST

Guess where Janet Henderson trained for ordination?

Posted by: Father David on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 10:14am BST

Cranmer Hall, obviously. Isn't that where they train future bishops?

Posted by: Simon Kershaw on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 11:01am BST

Simon Kershaw: Cranmer Hall is one of the selected few. St Stephen's House produces a number of fine priests equipped with future episcopal qualities

Posted by: Chuchu Nwagu on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 2:55pm BST

Hope so, Simon. I had heard that said of Westcott so it would be a relief to hear it had changed!

Will: Of course! I was — as is obvious — looking only at current staff, but that was as you point out a significant oversight.

Posted by: DBD on Friday, 1 May 2015 at 10:51pm BST

This is very disappointing. I had hoped that Leeds was in the vanguard of a much needed reordering of the dioceses, which might reduce the CoE's overheads towards something that the laity might reasonably be expected to afford, going forward. Unless, that is, you believe the measures in 'from Anecdote to Evidence' will provide the miraculous growth in numbers that the HoB seems to expect, in which case, dream on! But we now seem to have more bishops than we started with, and other dioceses have similar expansionist plans. Time to wake up and smell the coffee?

Posted by: Malcolm Dixon on Saturday, 2 May 2015 at 12:37am BST

Thanks for pointing this out to me. I missed it as I was distracted by a health problem.

Posted by: Ken Sawyer on Thursday, 7 May 2015 at 4:30pm BST
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