Comments: Senior Church Appointments

Chapter 4 on Diversity has a lot to commend it:

"Concern has been expressed to us that four distinct categories of clergy are under-represented among senior office-holders: women clergy, minority ethnic clergy, conservative evangelicals and ‘traditional catholics’. We believe it to be desirable that the holders of senior appointments in the Church of England should broadly reflect the diversity of the clergy from among whom they are drawn – and indeed that of the Church of England as a whole. (Suffragan bishoprics will remain a partial exception to that unless or until legislation permitting the ordination of women to the episcopate is passed.) In this chapter we shall reflect on each of these categories in turn"

Gay clergy are not acknowledged as a category. This unfortunate airbrushing of a large minority of the clergy can perhaps be explained by the report's scope:

"The Synod’s resolution requested a review of the law and practice regarding appointments to the offices mention in general, not an inquiry into any particular recent appointments. Our report therefore does not address the appointment of the then Canon Jeffrey John as Bishop of Reading in 2003, his withdrawal of acceptance of that appointment or his appointment as Dean of St Albans in 2004, even though some of the support for the Synod’s 2005 resolution might have been prompted by these events."

"Similarly, though we note that recent appointments in the Anglican Communion have raised issues as to the extent to which divorce and remarriage, homosexual relationships or questionable orthodoxy ought to be an impediment to appointment to senior office in the Church, it has not been our task to examine those issues."

Whose task is it to examine those issues? Perhaps I've missed something, or are we to expect such a study in the not too far distant near future?

Diversity has its limits, it seems.

Posted by Hugh of Lincoln at Wednesday, 20 June 2007 at 12:40pm BST
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