Saturday, 19 September 2015

Petition calls for Bishop of Sodor and Man to resign

An online petition was launched on 7 September calling on the Bishop of Sodor and Man to resign: Bishop Stop the Bullying!. The petition is now closed with 194 signatures.

The Manx media picked up the story earlier this week.

John Turner Isle of Man Today Online petition calls for Isle of Man’s Bishop and Archdeacon to resign

Manx Radio Petition calls for bishop’s resignation

It is also reported that the bishop had a heart attack on Monday, although he appears to be well on the way to recovery.

Adrian Darbyshire Isle of Man Today Bishop recovering from heart attack

Isle of Man Today Bishop speaks to iomtoday about heart attack ordeal

Posted by Peter Owen on Saturday, 19 September 2015 at 3:57pm BST | TrackBack
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
Categorised as: Church of England | News

Goodness. The people taking their bishop to account? Whatever next?!

Posted by: DBD on Saturday, 19 September 2015 at 6:01pm BST

This petition is obviously a follow up petition to those submitted by Rev Jules Gomes to Tynwald earlier this year (although the current petition clearly and cleverly does not mention Jules name).

Given that that is the case, I think it appropriate to want to know more about Jules Gomes, where he feels he has been wronged, and his history of working within the Church of England. A brief 'google' on the internet indicates that his previous position was as Canon Theologian (and theological educator) in Liverpool Diocese and Hope University, but that his tenure there was remarkably brief. For example his move to Liverpool from the London area was announced in September 2010, and his move FROM Liverpool to the Isle of Man was announced in July 2012. And - to be brutally honest - a move from Liverpool Diocese/Hope University to the Isle of Man seems a strange career move for someone committed to serious theology. In which case, to enable me and others to come to a considered judgement on the rights and wrongs of the conflict between Jules Gomes and Bishop Robert Paterson it would be very helpful to know the circumstances in which Jules Gomes decided to leave his previous post. (I genuinely don't know what they were - but the short time frame in which he was in Liverpool gives me cause for interest - and possible concern.)

Posted by: Marian Birch on Saturday, 19 September 2015 at 6:30pm BST

Bishop Paterson is a very nice and godly man and he has a lovely wife. They once ministered in the largest parish in Llandaff. He was the first bishop to ordain Anglican women priests on the Isle of Man. He is an excellent preacher.

Posted by: robert ian williams on Saturday, 19 September 2015 at 10:11pm BST

The Canon explains himself here:

Posted by: FrDavidH on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 9:28am BST

People have changes in their careers, and are entitled to.

Rev Gomes gained a CMS/Langham scholarship to undertake his PhD at Cambridge.

It was announced on 8th August 2008, in The Church Times, that Rev Gomes was to be Assistant Minister at Harefield St Mary's.

However, he resigned with effect from 20th June 2009.

In the 2009/10 prospectus for The London School of Theology he is listed as a Lecturer, and he lectured there simultaneous with his appointment at Harefield from 2008.

In September 2010 he is reported moving to Liverpool.

He has voiced disagreement with 'homosexuality': "Not a single non-Christian religion accepts homosexuality. It is ironic that missionaries who once brought biblical morality to the Third World now need missionaries from the Third World to bring them back to biblical basics."

He has also complained that Darwinian evolution is too readily accepted, while not believing the Genesis creation account should be taken literally.

I don't have a pony in the apparent conflict on an island I have never visited.

Rev Gomes seems to be a fairly standard evangelical preacher and teacher, and maybe conflict has arisen between him and the Bishop over his approach, a tension that frankly exists in the wider Church.

May grace replace strife and also unveil any bullying taking place in either direction. It seems like mediators are needed.

Posted by: Susannah Clark on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 11:24am BST

Is this the bishop Paterson who voted against extending pension rights to Church of England clerics in civil partnerships? I believe it is.
When in the York province he had a reputation as an uncompromising evangelical and not very ecumenically minded, so I wonder what he finds difficult in this cleric?

Posted by: Fr Alan on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 3:33pm BST

Susannah Amen to your prayer but please, a 'fairly standard evangelical preacher and teacher' is an unflattering generalisation that in no way reflects the diversity and mix of this tradition in the church today. And is any comment on his theological tradition even relevant?

Posted by: David Runcorn on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 3:45pm BST

Okay, having watched Canon Gomes being interviewed via the link above, he and the Bishop *definitely* need independent mediation.

The Canon is making very strong accusations against the Bishop, and someone needs to get to the bottom of the substance behind the charges, as well as listening to the Bishop too.


Posted by: Susannah Clark on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 5:26pm BST

I think that comment on this case should be approached with great caution. All is not as alleged.

Posted by: Pete Broadbent on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 6:30pm BST

Having also watched that video interview, I agree with Pete. And am therefore closing comments on this article, at least for the time being.

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento on Sunday, 20 September 2015 at 11:42pm BST