Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 21 May 2022

Kat Campion-Spall ViaMedia.News When is a Week not a Week?

Philip Jones Ecclesiastical Law A Decade of the Faculty Jurisdiction

Fergus Butler-Gallie Church Times My worship alongside a sexified fox
“Churches are toying with virtual-reality worship. Fergus Butler-Gallie tries it”

Ruth Harley ViaMedia.News Clericalist Individualism? Power, Abuse and Transformation

3 Comments

Opinion – 18 May 2022

Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones ViaMedia.News Being a Gay Christian and an Ordinand in the Church in Wales

Colin Coward Unadulterated Love The dangerous theology of Ian Paul

LGBTQ Faith UK Party like it’s 1753. (The Power of Love)

Daniel French Save The Parish Let Bishops be Bishops

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Listening to Sermons. A critical perspective

46 Comments

General Synod – July 2022

The General Synod of the Church of England will meet in York on 8-12 July 2022. The outline timetable has been circulated to Synod members and is copied below.

GENERAL SYNOD: JULY 2022
OUTLINE OF BUSINESS
Full details of each item will be on the agenda

Friday 8 July

2.00 pm – 7.00 pm
– Opening worship and introductions
– Welcome from the Anglican Communion guests
– Presidential Address
– Business Committee Report
– Routemap to Net Zero Carbon
– War in Ukraine
Not later than 5.45pm
– Questions

Saturday 9 July

9.00 am – 12.30 pm
– Opening worship
– See of Canterbury Membership of the Crown Nominations Commission
– Independent Review of Lowest Income Communities Funding and Strategic Development Funding
– Spending plans of the Church Commissioners and Archbishops’ Council

2.00 pm – 7.00 pm
– Safeguarding and Independence
– Diocesan Stipend Fund (Amendment) Measure – first consideration
Diocesan Synod Motion: Lincoln Diocese
– Insurance Premium Tax
– Church of England Pensions (Application of Capital Funds) Measure – first consideration
Not later than 5.55pm
– Questions

Evening: CNC candidates market place

Sunday 10 July

2.30 pm – 6.45 pm
– Introduction to group work – Living in Love and Faith and Vision & Strategy
– Group work
Private Members’ Motion: Dr Simon Eyre (Chichester)
– Assisted Suicide

8.30 pm – 9.30 pm
– Extended Act of Worship during which voting for CNC central members will take place

Monday 11 July

9.00 am – 12.30 pm
– Opening worship
– Presentation on Archbishops’ Council Annual Report
– Archbishops’ Council 2023
– Annual Budget Amending Canon 42 – first consideration

2.00 pm – 6.30 pm
– Affirming and Including Disabled People in the Whole Life of the Church
– Church Funds Investment Measure – first consideration
– Resourcing Ministerial Formation
– Miscellaneous Provisions Measure and Amending Canon No 43 – first consideration

8.00 pm – 10.00 pm
Diocesan Synod Motion: Canterbury Diocese
– Review of qualifications for PCC membership and entry on the church electoral roll
Diocesan Synod Motion: Guildford Diocese
– Age verification on pornography websites

Followed by compline

Tuesday 12 July

9.00 am – 12.30 pm
– Opening worship
– Loyal Address
– Amendments to the Standing Orders for the membership of the Canterbury Crown Nominations Commission
– Clergy Conduct Measure Implementation Group
– Announcement of election of Central CNC members
– Farewells
Not later than 12.30pm
– Prorogation

Deemed business:
– Legal Officers (Annual Fees) Order 2022,
– Ecclesiastical Judges, Legal Officers and Others (Fees) Order 2022,
– Code of Practice under the Clergy Discipline Measure,
– Pensions Rules (Amendment) Scheme

Contingency business:
Diocesan Synod Motion: Blackburn Diocese
– Reduce parochial fees for marriages

Deadline for receipt of questions: 1200 hrs Tuesday 28 June

8 Comments

Martyn Percy’s departure from Christ Church

Updated again Thursday 19 May

Rosie Dawson reports for Religion Media Centre on the farewell service: Dean Percy’s parting shot: You think I am leaving in disgrace … I am not

Rosie Dawson attended Martyn Percy’s farewell service in Oxford on Saturday. In an interview conducted shortly beforehand he told her why he’s calling on congregations to withhold their giving from the Church of England, and why he’s not leaving quietly….

…Christ Church College, Oxford, where Martyn Percy had been the dean for eight years, refused to host any sort of farewell. The University Church of St Mary was proposed as an alternative venue but became unavailable once it became clear that the Bishop of Oxford, the Rt Rev Steven Croft, and the dean, who is also professor of theological education at King’s College London, could not agree on the content of the service.

In the end it took place in the 19th-century chapel of Exeter College just off Broad Street. The chapel is outside the jurisdiction of the bishop, and he did not attend…

…Following the settlement with Christ Church, the Bishop and Martyn Percy entered into discussions about what form a leaving service should take. In correspondence seen by the Religion Media Centre, Bishop Croft wrote that he was unable to allow him to preach. Dean Percy protested: “Your letter treats me with cruel indifference. It seems to me that you do not really want this service. You clearly think I am leaving in disgrace … I am not.”

The Diocese of Oxford said in a statement: “Mindful of Dr Percy’s stated intention to the bishop to leave the Church of England and also some concerns about Dr Percy’s behaviour behind the scenes, it was not possible to permit Dr Percy to preach at a leaving service organised by the diocese”.

There is a video of the sermon available here. And the text is published over here.

Update 1

The Church Times reports: Diocese of Oxford praises ‘hair-stroking’ complainant for going public. Much of this information was in a Telegraph article at the weekend, behind a paywall. But in addition:

…A statement by the diocese of Oxford, issued on Saturday, criticises Professor Percy and praises Ms Jeune: “We are deeply saddened by the inaccurate and unevidenced claims Dr Percy makes in his media interviews.

“We’ve long said that the actions of some of Dr Percy’s supporters have left people damaged and hurt. None more so than Alannah Jeune. It’s a courageous decision to tell her story given all that she has experienced, but hers is a powerful account that counters the vitriol sent her way. Her story deserves to be widely read.”

(I have checked with the diocese and that is the full text.)

Update 2

There is an audio recording of the entire service available here.

86 Comments

Opinion – 14 May 2022

April Alexander ViaMedia.News Women Bishops: The Legacy of Baroness Howe of Idlicote (8 February 1932-22 March 2022)

Giles Fraser UnHerd How the Church attacks its own
“Bishops are presiding over a climate of fear”

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Surviving Church and the World of Ecclesiastical Politics

Helen King sharedconversations Me and Christ Church: beauty and truth

Jeremy Morris Ad fontes On not leaving the Church of England

24 Comments

House of Bishops – 9-11 May 2022

Update There was an earlier press release More clergy from UK Minority Ethnic backgrounds join House of Bishops.

Press release from the Church of England

House of Bishops – 9-11 May 2022 inclusive
12/05/2022

The House of Bishops held its first residential meeting in 2022, in York over three days. Joining the meeting for the first time were four participant observers of UK Minority Ethnic/ Global Majority Heritage (UKME/GMH) background who were formally welcomed by the House.

As the first substantive item, the House turned its attention to Governance reform. The House noted the update from the National Church Governance Project Board and the Board’s plan to establish the Episcopal Reference Group which will help shape how bishops and the Church of England National Services (CENS) will work together within the new governance model.

The House was then given an update on Racial Justice by the Archbishops’ Adviser on Minority Ethnic Anglican Concerns with the House taking note of progress made to date.

The House was then informed of agreed spending plans on behalf the Triennium Funding Working Group which outlined details and spending plans that will be made public. Plans include a significant increase in funding for the next three years to support God’s mission and ministry across the country, supporting local parishes and growing many more new worshipping communities to serve the whole nation. The Church Commissioners for England intend to distribute £1.2 billion between 2023 and 2025, up 30% from £930 million in the current three-year period, and plan to maintain this level of funding in the subsequent six years.

The House was then given an update on the work of the Independent Safeguarding Board (ISB) by its Chair. The Chair discussed the Board’s focus as it moves from phase one to phase two of its work and looked ahead to presenting at July Synod.

The House was then addressed by the Interim National Director of Safeguarding with an update on the work of the National Safeguarding Team including work to date on the Past Cases Review 2 (PCR2) which also included an update from the Chair of PCR2 Board.

The following day the House was addressed by the Bishop of London in her capacity as the Chair of the Next Steps Group of Living in Love and Faith (LLF). The House discussed the future discernment process of LLF and was joined by the Enabling Officer of LLF. In subsequent group work, the House detailed its aspirations for the discernment process as it relates to future engagement at the College of Bishops in the Autumn and July General Synod.

The Bishop of Kensington then updated the House on plans for the Centre of Cultural Witness, a new initiative launching in the Autumn to strengthen the Church’s public witness. The House took note and shared views on the development and scope of the Centre and ways in which Bishops and other prominent Christians can work towards the development of a distinctively public and Christian voice.

An update was then given on appointments to the Sees of Maidstone and Ebbsfleet which were both noted by the House.

The House was then addressed by the Vice Chair of the Clergy Conduct Measure Implementation Group who set out the final revised proposals for approval. The proposals were approved by the House, with a view that the reforms will establish a proportionate, efficient, and fairer system than the existing system

The House then turned its attention to developing the priority of a younger church, as part of the Vision and Strategy work stream. The House was addressed by the co-head of Vision and Strategy and the Head of Education , with later group and plenary work that focussed on the best ways to ensure the voices of children and young people are heard at both the national and diocesan level.

The House then looked at the future of education – particularly in the context of recent government white papers concerning a proposal that all schools have joined an academy trust by 2030. A series of proposals were approved by the House aimed at allowing dioceses and the whole church to engage in positive and proactive moves to secure the Christian character of Church of England schools and work towards full academisation.

On the final day the House was updated on recent progress towards Net Zero Carbon, including the findings of the Wayfinders Progress. The House endorsed both the Net Zero Carbon planning principles and diocesan milestones and agreed to annual reporting on carbon emissions and the Route map to Net Zero Carbon by 2030.

The House then heard how the Cathedrals Measure 2021 is being implemented by the Church Commissioners and noted the role of diocesan bishops. The House agreed to consider the proposed draft Church Commissioners guidance on cathedral visitations and provide input as part of the consultation.

As a penultimate item the Ministry team at Church House provided an update on theological education and resourcing for Ministerial Formation. The House endorsed their continuing work and the general direction of travel.

As a final item the House took note of reflections from UKME / GMH participants on the meeting, followed by general reflections from the House.

The meeting ended in prayer.

21 Comments

See of Ebbsfleet – consultation

Press release from the Church of England

See of Ebbsfleet – consultation

12/05/2022

Following the resignation of the former Bishop of Ebbsfleet, Jonathan Goodall, in September last year, a consultation on the way forward for the see has received a number of calls to consider relocating the post to be rooted in an individual diocese and diocesan college of bishops.

The Bishop of Ebbsfleet – one of the Church of England’s three ‘Provincial Episcopal Visitors’, who minister to traditional catholic parishes – has been responsible primarily for churches in the western half of the Church of England’s Province of Canterbury.

Following the initial consultation, a suggestion from the Archbishop of Canterbury to revive the suffragan See of Oswestry in the Diocese of Lichfield is currently being explored.

The proposal would involve a future Bishop of Oswestry living in the diocese and ministering to traditional catholic parishes in that and other dioceses of the West Midlands and South West of England.

No decisions have been taken. Initial consultations are currently underway within the Diocese of Lichfield, with The Society and in consultation with the Archbishop of Canterbury. Any proposal would then be considered by the Dioceses Commission this summer.

Notes to Editors:

  • The Provincial Episcopal Visitors – the Bishops Beverley, Richborough and Ebbsfleet – were created as part of the arrangements in 1992 which first enabled women to be ordained as priests.
  • The See of Oswestry was one of a number of sees created in the 19th Century but never filled
  • Further information about The Society (more fully, The Society under the patronage of Saint Wilfrid and Saint Hilda).
67 Comments

Opinion – 11 May 2022

Martyn Percy Prospect Why I’m leaving the Church of England
“Mired in allegations of partisanship and incompetence, the Church is now incapable of running its own affairs. After a series of farcical “safeguarding” claims, the former dean of Christ Church, Oxford, no longer feels he belongs”
[This is covered as a news item in The Guardian and Church Times.]

Archbishop Cranmer Bishop of Oxford instructs lawyers to censor Archbishop Cranmer

Diocese of Oxford Dr Martyn Percy has announced he is to leave the Church of England

Felicity Cooke ViaMedia.News Leading, Following, or Forgetting? The Church and the World

75 Comments

Church Commissioners’ financial results for 2021

Press release from the Church of England

Church Commissioners reports strong financial returns in 2021 of 13.3%

11/05/2022

The Church Commissioners for England, which manages the endowment fund of the Church of England, published its financial results for 2021 today in its Annual Report.

The continued strong investment returns have enabled the Church Commissioners to increase its funding of the Church’s mission and ministry in the 2023-2025 triennium to an all-time high. The Commissioners will contribute £1.2 billion to the Church’s funding in the next three-year period, which will account for about 20% of the Church’s expenditure. The Church Commissioners plan to maintain that level of funding in the subsequent six years, subject to investment performance and market fluctuations, which would help the Church to plan for the medium and long term.

The Church Commissioners’ active investment approach and risk-mitigating diversification across a broad range of asset classes enabled it to generate returns of 13.3% in 2021, exceeding its target of CPIH +4%, and the Commissioners has beaten its return target over the last three, 10 and 30 year periods. The fund was valued at £10.1 billion as at the end of 2021.

The performance of the fund despite the uncertain environment of the last few years has enabled the Commissioners to maintain its funding commitment in the 2020-2022 triennium of over £900 million.

Alan Smith, First Church Estates Commissioner, said: 

“Good governance and an excellent team are both essential for us to achieve the strong returns necessary to provide the maximum sustainable level of funding for the Church’s mission and ministry, whilst maintaining our responsible investment philosophy. I am pleased the Church Commissioners have been able to meet our funding commitments for the current triennium despite the volatile market environment we have experienced in recent years due to Covid-19 and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Our excellent long-term returns are also enabling us to put in place a strong funding plan for the next three to nine years. Our long-term outlook means we contribute the maximum amount of funds to the Church today whilst also maintaining our support for future generations.”

The Church of England today announced a 30% increase in its national funding for the next three-year period to support and develop ministry, particularly amongst young and disadvantaged communities. The press release can be found here.

3 Comments

Church of England national funding to increase 30%

Press release from the Church of England

Church of England national funding to increase 30% to support and develop ministry especially with young people and disadvantaged communities

  • Nine-year funding plan will support a large increase in ministry and mission activity to share the Good News of Jesus Christ in local communities across England
  • Focus on ministry among young people and disadvantaged communities
  • 2030 carbon net zero target also receives significant investment

The Church of England today announced plans for a significant increase in funding for the next three years to support God’s mission and ministry across the country, supporting local parishes and growing many more new worshipping communities to serve the whole nation.

The Church Commissioners for England intend to distribute £1.2 billion between 2023 and 2025, up 30% from £930 million in the current three-year period, and plan to maintain this level of funding in the subsequent six years.

In total, this would mean the Church Commissioners plan to distribute £3.6 billion to frontline work of the Church of England between 2023 and 2031, making the Church Commissioners and Archbishops’ Council among the largest grant givers in the country.

The Church Commissioners’ distributions will account for approximately 20% of Church funding, whilst the biggest contribution comes from the faithful and generous giving of churchgoers across the country.

The core of the extra funding will be channelled into the revitalisation of parish and local ministry. The distributions will help fund dioceses’ plans to serve the nation by reaching more young and disadvantaged people, addressing issues of racial justice, and radically cutting the Church’s carbon footprint.

In line with the Church’s Vision and Strategy for the 2020s, funds will also be used to support parish churches and dioceses. This will include:

  • Continued funding for the Church in the poorest parts of the country, taking into account lessons from the recent independent review into Strategic Development (SDF) and Lowest Income Communities (LInC) funding.
  • Increasing the number of clergy in front-line ministry in parishes and chaplaincies, with the intent that the Church’s clergy better reflects the diversity of the nation that we serve.

In addition, the Church will lead by example in areas that are important not only to the Church but to wider society.

  • Enable thriving local churches across the country, making significant contributions to their local communities and delivering even more social action work
  • Support diocesan, parish and cathedral plans for the Church to become carbon net zero by 2030 – a target set by General Synod.
  • Fund measures that will make the Church more diverse.

(more…)

7 Comments

Archbishop Welby apologises to Indigenous peoples of Canada

The Archbishop of Canterbury has apologised for the “terrible crime” of the Anglican Church’s involvement in Canada’s residential schools – and for the Church of England’s “grievous sins” against the Indigenous peoples of Canada.

The Archbishop spent last weekend visiting Indigenous Canadian reserves, meeting with Indigenous leaders and Anglicans, and listening to residential school survivors, as part of a five-day visit to Canada.

Read the full Lambeth Palace press release here, and also Read Archbishop Justin’s apology to the Indigenous peoples of Canada. Scroll down to the end of the first link for some background information on the Anglican connection to Canadian residential schools.

Media reports from church and Canadian mainstream sources:

The Church Times: ‘We built hell and put your children in it’: Welby apologises to Indigenous Canadians.

The Anglican Journal: ‘Apologies are cheap … unless accompanied by action’: In Canada for 6 days, archbishop of Canterbury re-commits to reconciliation

The Globe and Mail: Archbishop of Canterbury apologizes to residential school survivors for Anglican Church’s role in ‘building hell’.

Reports from CBC News:

15 Comments

Opinion – 7 May 2022

Christopher Yoder The Living Church The Scouring of the White Horse

Andrew Graystone Church Times ‘Re-dressing’ victims’ wounds

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Post Traumatic Church Induced Stress (PTCIS) Is it a Problem?

8 Comments

Opinion – 4 May 2022

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Music in Worship: Questions that need to be asked.

Amy Kenny Earth & Altar Celebrating the Wheelchair: an excerpt from My Body is not a Prayer Request

Mark Chapman ViaMedia.News It’s Not Just About the Bible

Peter Webster Webstory Michael Ramsey and the Lambeth Conference

36 Comments

Bishop of Croydon

Press release from the Prime Minister’s Office

There is more detail on the Southwark diocesan website.

Appointment of Bishop of Croydon: 3 May 2022

The Queen has approved the nomination of The Venerable Dr Marlene Rosemarie Mallett, Archdeacon of Croydon, to the Suffragan See of Croydon, in the Diocese of Southwark.

From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street
Published 3 May 2022

The Queen has approved the nomination of The Venerable Dr Marlene Rosemarie Mallett, Archdeacon of Croydon, to the Suffragan See of Croydon, in the Diocese of Southwark, in succession to The Right Reverend Jonathan Clark following his retirement.

Background

Rosemarie was educated at Sussex University and Warwick University, and trained for ministry at the South East Institute of Theological Education. She served her title at Christ Church, Brixton Road, in the Diocese of Southwark and was ordained Priest in 2005.

Rosemarie served as Priest-in-Charge at St John the Evangelist, Angell Town, from 2007 and was appointed Vicar in 2013, as well as being made Director of Ordinands for the Kingston Episcopal Area. In 2015, Rosemarie was additionally appointed Diocesan Director of Justice, Peace and the Integrity of Creation.

She took up her current role as Archdeacon of Croydon in 2020.

16 Comments

Bampton Lectures 2022: Professor Alec Ryrie

The University Church in Oxford announces:

The Age of Hitler, and how we can escape it

This year’s lectures are given by Professor Alec Ryrie FBA, who  is Professor of the History of Christianity in the Department of Theology and Religion, University of Durham.

The age of Hitler is not the 1930s and 1940s: it is our own lifetimes. It is the period in which Western culture has come to define its values not by Christianity, but by the narrative of the Second World War. It is the period in which our most potent moral figure has been Adolf Hitler, and in which our only truly fixed moral reference point has been our shared rejection of Nazism.

Which is good: but it’s not enough. And even if defining our values this way was wise, it’s clear that this postwar, anti-Nazi moral consensus is unravelling, and our whole system of values coming under pressure. What is going to come next? These lectures will give an account of how the ‘secular’ values of the postwar world came about, and what will happen now that the age of Hitler seems to be passing. They will show that for a new shared system of values to emerge from our current turmoil, we will need to draw creatively both on the newer, secular, anti-Nazi value system and on the older Christian value systems which remain powerfully present in European and Western culture. And they will show that such a creative synthesis is not only desirable, but also possible – perhaps even likely.

Details can be found here. The dates are 10 May and 17 May. The lectures will be live-streamed and recorded.

The Bampton Lectures

The Bampton Lectures, founded by the will of the Revd John Bampton (1690-1751), first took place at the University Church in 1780. Over the centuries, these prestigious lectures – sometimes courting controversy, always intellectually stimulating – have covered a range of theological subjects. It is a condition of the Bampton Bequest that the lectures are published by the Lecturer. These lectures are delivered in the Trinity Term every year.

3 Comments

Opinion – 30 April 2022

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Safeguarding and the Search for Independence

Stephanie Pywell ViaMedia.News To Love and to Cherish… According to our Beliefs and Lifestyles

Richard Scorer The Free Thinker Child Protection and Religious Freedom

27 Comments

More criticisms of government plans for asylum-seekers

See previous post on this topic. Some more recent items:

Justin Welby  in the Telegraph Put humanity at the heart of our asylum system (I have not yet located a copy of this outside the paywall, but it is quoted extensively in the article below from Archbishop Cranmer.)

Paul Butler in the Independent ‘Rwanda refugees plan flies in the face of Christian teachings’ – Bishop of Durham

Arun Arora in The Northern Echo The Government policy that tears at the nation’s soul

Archbishop Cranmer How many millions of asylum seekers should the UK welcome?

Vatican News UK-Rwanda asylum deal raises human rights concerns

…Botswanan activist and lawyer, Alice Mogwe spoke with Vatican News on this latest deal between the UK and Rwanda, reflecting on its implications from the perspective of human rights. She is the President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)…

Contains link to audio interview (9 minutes)

Note this paragraph:

Concrete recommendations

In lieu of the controversial agreement, the FIDH president invites governments to stop focusing on the consequences of migration but rather coordinate efforts to stem the causes of migration.

“Nobody wakes up one day and decides to leave their country if there is good governance, if there is a rule of law, if human rights are in fact being protected and respected,” she says.

More so, she calls for a revision of the Asylum agreement, stressing that states need to comply with international human rights standards.

“What will happen to those who are vulnerable?” she asks. “What’s going to happen if children are separated? What’s going to happen if people fail to be recognized as refugees in Rwanda once they reach there?”

12 Comments

Bishop of Bath and Wells

Press release from the Prime Minister’s Office.
There are more details on the diocesan website.

Bishop of Bath and Wells: 28 April 2022

The Queen has approved the nomination of The Right Reverend Dr Noel Michael Roy Beasley, Suffragan Bishop of Hertford, for election as Bishop of Bath and Wells.

From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street
Published 28 April 2022

The Queen has approved the nomination of The Right Reverend Dr Noel Michael Roy Beasley, Suffragan Bishop of Hertford, for election as Bishop of Bath and Wells, in succession to The Right Reverend Peter Hancock following his retirement.

Background

Michael was educated at Imperial College, London and Oriel College, Oxford and trained for ministry at Cranmer Hall, Durham. He served his title in the Parishes of Newport, Chetwynd and Forton in the Diocese of Lichfield and was ordained Priest in 2000.

Michael became Chaplain of Westcott House, Cambridge in 2003 whilst also working as Senior Programme Manager for The Partnership for Child Development, a research group in the Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at Imperial College, London. In 2008, he was made Vice Principal and Tutor in Mission at Westcott House and Director for The Partnership for Child Development. In 2010, he became Director of Mission, in the Diocese of Oxford and was appointed Honorary Canon of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford in 2014.

Michael has served in his current role as Suffragan Bishop of Hertford since 2015.

37 Comments

Opinion – 27 April 2022

Scot Peterson ViaMedia.News All Change: What Next for Living in Love and Faith?

Surviving Church The Kenneth Saga: End in sight?

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church House of Survivors. A New Resource for the Church of England

Stephen Cottrell William Temple Foundation An Easter Vision

ViaMedia.News Living in Love and Faith: The Ozanne Foundation Responds

22 Comments

Smyth Review update

News from the Church of England

Smyth Review update
27/04/2022

Following an update in January about timings on the Smyth Review the National Safeguarding Team, NST, has now provided a further update to the survivors and victims, who suffered the appalling abuse by the late John Smyth.

The reviewers are still continuing to receive important information, with some completely new people coming forward to make representations, including victims and people who knew Smyth over the years. There was an evidence deadline of September 2021, however it was considered important that these voices were heard to obtain a fuller picture as possible.

The approach the reviewers are taking to draft the report is to cover all the material in a largely chronological way, providing drafts covering the different periods and starting the representations process with those people named in the report as it progresses. This phased approach is considered more effective and helpful for all those involved, particularly survivors and victims, rather than presenting the full report to the NST all in one go. The first phase draft is expected to be with the NST within a month and it will continue to receive drafts over the summer months.

The Church (as stated by the Archbishop of Canterbury) is committed to full and unredacted publication of the report. The representations process, for all involved is expected to be complex, with the eventual date of publication being determined by this.

There will be further updates when more precise timings are known. Both the reviewers and the Church recognise that this review has the potential to be re-traumatising for victims and survivors and support continues to be offered, please contact jude.renton@churchofengland.org in the first instance.

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