Comments: Synod Questions

Miss Prudence Dailey (Oxford) to ask the Chairman of the House of Bishops:

Q46 Is the House aware of the pub in Paddington Railway Station named The Mad Bishop and Bear, and can it shed any light on the identity of the mad bishop?

I see that the Archbishop of Canterbury is stepping up to reply to that one.

Posted by badman at Thursday, 6 July 2006 at 3:14pm BST

Sorry to disappoint you, Badman, but you will find that the Bishop of Willesden is going to answer this one. The questions are arranged to follow the name of the person who will be answering them.

Posted by Peter Owen at Thursday, 6 July 2006 at 4:14pm BST

A great opportunity missed!

Posted by badman at Thursday, 6 July 2006 at 4:30pm BST

do american bishops get to ask general synod questions, or is that kind of intrusion just a one-way street?

Posted by thomas bushnell, bsg at Thursday, 6 July 2006 at 5:40pm BST

The short answer is no. American bishops can be invited to address the Synod - they can observe the House of Bishops and contribute to discussions in closed session (and I believe this has happened). They can also address fringe meetings of Synod if they are invited to do so.

The American system is much more open. But in the recent General Convention from what I understand only two Englishmen intervened. They were Archbishop Sentamu and Colin Coward of Changing Attitude (contributions which might be said to have cancelled each other out). Both of them addressed the special hearing - an open meeting for all those accredited. Archbishop Sentamu was seated in the House of Bishops - and once or twice expressed an opinion - although he did not have a vote.

Which system of government is best? Definitely the American one for openness, but by far and away the English one for a better quality of debate.

Posted by Andrew Carey at Thursday, 6 July 2006 at 10:38pm BST
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