Monday, 20 September 2004

Dean of Ripon suspended

The Bishop of Ripon and Leeds John Packer has announced that the Dean of Ripon John Methuen has been ‘inhibited’ (the equivalent of being suspended on full pay) from his clerical duties following the laying of formal complaints against him under the Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Measure.

Under the Measure, formal complaints of ‘conduct unbecoming the office and work of a clerk in Holy Orders’ are sent to an independent examiner who can either recommend their rejection or that the matters should be determined by means of trial in a Consistory Court. In a statement made to the Cathedral congregation today, Sunday September 19, Bishop John Packer says that while the Dean is clear that he has a full answer to the complaints, he has decided to inhibit the Dean under the Measure, while the legal process takes place, in order to eliminate, as far as possible, continued pressure and gossip.

Here is the official press release from the Diocese.

Press Association report: Dean Suspended in Church Probe
BBC Dean suspended in cathedral row
Telegraph Dean of Ripon suspended for ‘conduct unbecoming’
Guardian Dean suspended over ‘control freakery’

Update Here is the Yorkshire Post report by Michael Brown and Julie Hemmings Suspended dean faces ‘trial’ over conduct.

In a statement made to the cathedral congregation, Bishop Packer said:

“I regret to have to inform members of the Cathedral congregation that a number of formal complaints against the Dean of conduct unbecoming the office and work of a clerk in Holy Orders have been laid before me under the Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Measure.

The Dean is clear that he has a full answer to the complaints.

However under the Measure, and to eliminate as far as possible continued pressure and gossip, I have decided to inhibit the Dean from the exercise of his office until such time as these matters are disposed of, either by a rejection of the complaints by an independent examiner, or by means of a trial in a Consistory Court.

Until that time the Dean will play no part in the life of the Cathedral and Diocese.

For the time being Canon Michael Glanville-Smith, as Senior Residentiary Canon, will take responsibility with his colleagues for the life and witness of the Cathedral. I ask for your prayers at this difficult time for Dean John and his family, and for all members of the Cathedral.”

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Monday, 20 September 2004 at 7:36 AM GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England