Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 31 March 2018 – Easter Eve

Markus Dünzkofer The Eucharist is a dangerous thing

Ben Pugh Church Times Ransom, substitute, scapegoat, God: is there one doctrine of the atonement?
“No, there are only theories”

Rosie Harper ViaMedia.News Apologies, Forgiveness and IICSA

Editorial The Guardian view on Easter: it would take a miracle

The Guardian Good Friday around the world – in pictures

Simon Jenkins The Guardian Happy Easter to you. Now let’s nationalise our churches
“Church buildings should revert to places of congregation, comfort and enterprise – through liberation from the church”

More primatial Easter messages
Archbishop John Davies
Archbishop Stanley Ntagali
Archbishop Fred Hiltz
Archbishop James Wong
Archbishop Paul Kwong
Archbishop Moon Hing


The View from Salisbury

The Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, preached at the diocesan Maundy Thursday Chrism Mass.

The press release about this: A Maundy Message in the World’s Eye

The full text of his sermon is available here.

Another quote from the sermon:

…As a parish priest I always used to find that people with the most intractable problems would appear after the Sunday evening service when nowhere was open and there was no-one to whom I could refer them. For bishops the equivalent is receiving a letter late on Friday afternoon from the Archbishops about the Church of England and the Independent Inquiry on Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) which they wanted read out or distributed at the start of Holy Week.

Please will you pray this Holy Week especially for all those involved, and for all affected by safeguarding issues.

Thank you for responding so promptly.

Janet Fife wrote a sharp but insightful Survivor’s reply to the Archbishops which is online.

I thought you might want to know,

she wrote,

how I, as a survivor, feel about your letter. And I know you’ll pay careful attention, because you’ve said you want to listen to survivors.

Since Archbishop Justin has called for an end to clericalism and deference, I’m going to call you Justin and John.

If you’re going to address us all as ‘Sisters and Brothers in Christ’, don’t finish with ‘The Most Revd and Rt Hon’. It’s just not brotherly. It looks like showing off. It certainly doesn’t look like the shame Justin said he felt.

If you want to send out something called a pastoral letter, make it pastoral…What practical steps have you taken to help survivors, for instance?

And so on.

It’s a good letter and a tough one and it’s received quite a lot of comment. She got me thinking about what we would be doing today gathered together and all dressed up at the start of the great three days that lead to Easter through betrayal, denial and the disciples running for it…

At the weekend, the Revd Canon Prof James Woodward, Principal of Sarum College, Salisbury, wrote this article: Salisbury Under Siege – What Does it Mean to be an Easter People?. An excerpt:

… In the gospel accounts of the resurrection, there is both fear and joy. Following Jesus is not a protection from the difficulties and challenges that face us in life. Being an Easter people does not mean that any of us will not require handkerchief to mop up our tears. All of us will know deep in our hearts what our lives, our world is like, and how much of a struggle it is. As human beings we have to deal with our fears and the reality of how little control we are able to exercise over circumstances and experiences.

It is into this condition of who we are and where we are that God can touch us with Easter life and hope. Easter peace is not the obliteration of our past or present, but the re-drawing of our lives into a new way of seeing. Faith can give us the opportunity for direction, redirection, meaning and depth.

As we live with complexity and uncertainty in Salisbury we have an opportunity to take this opportunity to work together in live for what is good. However partial limited our faith may be that always lies the possibility of transformation. We can be confident but we must safeguard against a triumphalism which does not listen carefully to human experience and its sensitivities. We can nurture faith that embraces doubt and in doing so can grows through openness and honesty.

Remember Salisbury in your prayers. Consider the longer view, the enduring truth that goodness is always stronger than evil. Love will conquer. Justice will prevail.

That will mean a change for us. It will also require a much stronger sense of the relational and our readiness to move on and beyond our internal dialogues and contestations to listen more carefully to human experience. We need space and time to share our story…


Opinion – 28 March 2018

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Janet Fife’s Letter – some reflections

Martin Sewell Archbishop Cranmer In Holy Week we should hold our Archbishops’ feet to the fire

Some Primatial Easter messages
Archbishops Richard Clarke and Eamon Martin
Archbishop Philip Freier
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry

Ally Barrett Reverend Ally First time in church?

James Eglinton The Herald Kirk should not be debasing the act of giving


Nicholas Papadopulos to be next Dean of Salisbury

Press release from Number 10

Queen approves appointment of Dean of Salisbury: 27 March 2018
The Queen has approved the nomination of the Reverend Canon Nicholas Charles Papadopulos to the Deanery of Salisbury.

Published 28 March 2018
From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Reverend Canon Nicholas Charles Papadopulos, MA, Canon Treasurer of Canterbury Cathedral and Director of Initial Ministerial Education 2 in the Diocese of Canterbury, to be appointed to the Deanery of Salisbury, following the resignation of the Very Reverend June Osborne, BA, on 14 July 2017.

The Reverend Canon Nicholas Papadopulos is aged 51. He studied History at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, and Law at City University, London. He was called to the Bar by the Middle Temple in 1990 and practised at the criminal Bar for seven years. He trained for ministry at Ripon College Cuddesdon, and subsequently studied for his MA at King’s College, London. He served his title as Assistant Curate at St Mark Portsea in the Diocese of Portsmouth from 1999 to 2002. From 2002 to 2007 he was Senior Chaplain and Press Officer to the Bishop of Salisbury, and from 2007 to 2013 Vicar of Pimlico St Peter with Westminster Christ Church (St Peter’s Eaton Square) in the Diocese of London. Since 2013 he has been Canon Treasurer at Canterbury Cathedral and Director of Initial Ministerial Education 2 in the Diocese of Canterbury.


Simon Burton-Jones to be next Bishop of Tonbridge

Press release from Number 10

Nomination of Suffragan Bishop of Tonbridge: 27 March 2018

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Venerable Simon David Burton-Jones to this post.

Published 27 March 2018
From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Venerable Simon David Burton-Jones, MA, BTh, Archdeacon of Rochester, in the Diocese of Rochester, to the Suffragan See of Tonbridge, in the Diocese of Rochester. He succeeds the Right Reverend Brian Colin Castle, MA, PhD, who resigned on the 30 November 2015.

That’s the press release in full. There are more details on the Rochester diocesan website: New Bishop of Tonbridge Announced.


Further analysis of the IICSA hearings

Since the hearings concluded last week, there have been several further reports in addition to the letter from the archbishops and the response from Janet Fife.

The Church Times reported on both of those here: Sorry not enough, Archbishops’ letter says after IICSA, and a survivor agrees.

The BBC radio programme Sunday carried a lengthy report available to listen to here (starts at 28 minutes).

The Independent inquiry into child sexual abuse in the Anglican Church concluded three weeks of hearing this week. Phil Johnson, abuse survivor, talks to Emily Buchanan about what the hearings have meant to him. Bishop Alan Wilson, long term critic of the Church on its handling of clerical sex abuse cases, discusses the positives and negatives to have emerged. And Bishop Mark Sowerby, the deputy lead bishop for Safeguarding responds. Martin Bashir BBC Religion Correspondent provides analysis.

Martin Sewell has written at Archbishop Cranmer In Holy Week we should hold our Archbishops’ feet to the fire.

And Martyn Percy has written for Modern Church Church of England ‘no longer competent’ to manage safeguarding, says senior cleric.

The full article is available here.


A response to the Archbishops

Surviving Church has published this: Survivor’s Reply to Archbishops’ pastoral letter.

The author is Janet Fife.

Please read the whole letter.


Opinion – 24 March 2018

Fred Hiltz Primate of Canada ‘Standing under in order to understand’

Jonathan Clatworthy Château Clâteau Sex abuse and godly power

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church IICSA – Final reflections

Anna Norman-Walker Viamedia.News Is There Life for the Church After IICSA?

Andrew Lightbown Theore0 Talking of ++Justin: legality, honesty and rising above contempt.

Church Times Interview with Loretta Minghella, the new First Church Estates Commissioner
Loretta Minghella tells Paul Handley how the Church Commissioners are flexing their muscle


IICSA: Archbishops' Joint Pastoral Letter

From the York diocesan website: Independent Inquiry on Child Sexual Abuse: Archbishops’ Joint Pastoral Letter

The Archbishops of York and Canterbury have written a joint Pastoral Letter for wide circulation following the end of the hearing which took place over the last three weeks as part of the Independent Inquiry on Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA).

“We are writing to you to ask for your prayers as Holy Week begins and as the Independent Inquiry on Child Sexual Abuse has finished its hearing into matters in the Diocese of Chichester. Please will you pray this Holy Week especially for all those involved, and for all affected by safeguarding issues.”

Archbishops Sentamu and Justin hope that their letter can either be read out or distributed this weekend and at the start of Holy Week.

“We take very seriously all that has been heard by the Inquiry. Archbishop Justin said when he gave evidence last week that he had learned again through listening and reading the evidence given to the Inquiry, that we must not simply say sorry, but that we must also take action that demonstrates clearly that we have learnt the lessons. It is a fact that Bishops and Archbishops are now rightly required to listen, learn and act in accordance with safeguarding legislation and good practice.”

Please download the Archbishops’ letter below:

Joint Pastoral Letter from the Archbishops of York and Canterbury: IICSA
For circulation following the end of the hearing which took place during March 2018 as part of the Independent Inquiry on Child Sexual Abuse (IICS


IICSA hearings – Friday 23 March

The final day in this three week period of hearings has concluded and the transcript is available here.

Many documents have at last been uploaded to the IICSA website, and I will publish links to some of the more important ones in a separate article soon.

Before today’s hearing there were some comments about the hearings made yesterday, including these:

Guardian editorial: The Guardian view of abuse in the church: a truly dreadful story

Michael Sadgrove Child Sexual Abuse – what does the church do about shame?

Archbishop Cranmer Welby condemns the church’s deferential culture of clericalism and tribalism

Law & Religion UK IICSA: Archbishop Welby’s evidence session

And earlier, another article which I failed to link to previously: IICSA: Some legal views

Reports on today’s session:

Church Times Church of England would be shut down if it were a school, survivors’ lawyer tells final IICSA hearing

Christian Today Church of England made ‘conscious effort to treat survivors badly’, inquiry hears

Guardian Child abuse inquiry: ‘collusion and cover-up’ rife among C of E clergy

The Tablet Church of England ‘inappropriate’ organisation to have charge of children, inquiry hears


Court of Appeal dismisses Pemberton case

Updated Thursday evening

The Court of Appeal has today dismissed the appeal by Jeremy Pemberton against the earlier judgement of the Employment Appeal Tribunal.

The judgement is now available online: Pemberton v Inwood [2018] EWCA Civ 564, with a printable version here.

There are numerous media reports:

Anglican Communion News Service Priest in same-sex marriage loses legal challenge to bishop’s “discriminatory” response

Guardian Gay hospital chaplain loses discrimination appeal against C of E

Christian Today Gay clergyman Jeremy Pemberton loses discrimination appeal against Church of England

Press Association via Premier Gay priest denied job after marrying partner loses discrimination appeal

BBC Gay priest Jeremy Pemberton’s discrimination appeal dismissed

Huffington Post Gay Priest Jeremy Pemberton Loses Discrimination Appeal Against The Church Of England

Newark Advertiser Jeremy Pemberton loses discrimination appeal

Nottingham Post Gay priest ‘naturally disappointed’ after his appeal over discrimination claim is dismissed

Church Times Bishop was in his rights to refuse Pemberton a licence, tribunal rules

Jeremy Pemberton has issued a press release, which is copied below the fold.

ACNS reports:

Commenting on today’s judgment, a Southwell and Nottingham diocesan spokesperson said: “We are pleased that the court has upheld the decision made with regards to the employment tribunal. We recognise that this has been a long and difficult process for many of those concerned, and we hold them in our thoughts and prayers.”

OneBodyOneFaith has issued a statement: Disappointment and gratitude as Pemberton case concludes

“…The question now is less whether the bishop acted legally – that seems beyond doubt – but whether people want to continue to support this kind of discrimination against committed, loving couples as they seek to follow Christ. There is a real sense of the need for change, the will for change and the time for change.“



IICSA hearings – Wednesday 21 March

Updated Thursday morning

The transcript of the final day of taking evidence from live witnesses can be found here.
There will be no hearing tomorrow, Thursday. On Friday the final portions of some written statements will be read into the record, and that will be followed by statements from the lawyers representing various “core participants”.

Media reports:

Church Times
‘I am ashamed of the Church’, Archbishop Welby admits to IICSA

Christian Today
Archbishop of Canterbury goes before child sex abuse hearings
Justin Welby: Child sex abuse by priests will ‘destroy the Church’ if it continues

The Tablet
Archbishop Welby to give evidence at national inquiry into child sexual abuse
Archbishop Welby ‘appalled and ashamed’ of Church of England

Press Association via Daily Mail Abusers may be forgiven but can never be trusted again, Archbishop tells inquiry

The Times Abuse makes me ashamed of church, says Welby (£)

Guardian Justin Welby: sexual abusers can never be trusted again

Belfast Telegraph Archbishop tells child abuse inquiry he is ‘ashamed’ of Church
Abusers may be forgiven but can never be trusted again, Archbishop tells inquiry

Anglican Communion News Service
Archbishop of Canterbury gives evidence to Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Telegraph Justin Welby: I have learned to be ashamed of the Church of England

Daily Mail
Archbishop of Canterbury fights back tears to tell child abuse inquiry he is ‘ashamed of the Church’ as he says abusers must be forgiven but can ‘never be trusted again’

Religion News Service via Colorado Springs Gazette Archbishop of Canterbury: Church has failed to protect children from abuse

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church IICSA -reflections on Welby’s conclusions


Opinion – 21 March 2018

David Walker ViaMedia.News St Francis – Suffering, Abuse of Power and the Love of God.

Andrew Lightbown Theore0 Talking of leadership and governance

Jason Farago New York Times ‘Jacob and His Twelve Sons’: Zurbarán’s Biblical All-Stars

Colin Coward Unadulterated Love Living to survive church – a reflection on the IICSA hearings

Nick Baines The facts of the matter?

Jem Bloomfield quiteirregular Sunday Morning in the Midlands


IICSA hearings – Monday/Tuesday 19/20 March

Updated again Wednesday afternoon

The transcript of the Anglican hearings for Monday 19 March is available here.

Witnesses heard were: two survivors, the Bishop of Manchester (concerning religious coummunities) and Graham Tilby (head of the National Safeguarding Team).

Media reports:

Church Times
Church must create ‘culture of challenge’ Peter Ball survivor tells IICSA

Abuse allegations must be reported, Church of England safeguarding adviser tells IICSA

Christian Today
Abuse inquiry reveals Church’s ‘stupidity, incompetence and lying’, says bishop

Serious abuse by priests could still go unreported, Church’s safeguarding chief admits

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church
Safeguarding – reconciling two perspectives.
The comments below this article, including those from Ian Elliott, author of one of the earlier reports, are worth reading.


The transcript for Tuesday is now published.

Media Reports:

Christian Today
Clergy burnt church files after being accused of covering up abuse, inquiry hears

Church Times
IICSA latest: the dean’s bonfire and the destroyed report at Chichester Cathedral


Further reports on abuse survivor Matthew Ineson

in other news related to safeguarding, the Church Times last Friday carried a report on the case of Matthew Ineson.

See Sex abuse survivor Matthew Ineson criticises ‘inaction’ of senior clerics in BBC programme.

Also, the Church of England Newspaper reports: Abuse survivor calls for senior bishops to resign over failures

Thinking Anglicans has reported on this case previously:

The TV programme mentioned in the above report was linked in this article.

Church of England issues statement about Matthew Ineson

Matthew Ineson responds to statement from NST


Bishop of Shrewsbury to leave

The Area Bishop of Shrewsbury in the diocese of Lichfield, the Rt Revd Mark Rylands, has announced that he has chosen to leave his role for a return to parish ministry in Exeter Diocese. He will continue as Bishop of Shrewsbury until July when there will be a special farewell service. He will then take up his new role as a Priest-in-Charge of the Ashburton and Moorland Team in Exeter Diocese, where he will also be an Assistant Bishop.

Further details are on the Lichfield diocesan website.


IICSA hearings – Friday 16 March


Friday’s transcript is now available here.

Next week’s schedule is published here.

Statement from Archbishop of Canterbury on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, IICSA (The archbishop is scheduled to appear on Wednesday)

Media reports and comment:

Church Times
Church must accept past faults, says Chichester diocesan Visitor Robert Bursell QC

‘I don’t recall hearing about Chichester’s problems,’ Lord Carey tells IICSA

Archdeacon tells IICSA: ‘I couldn’t believe a priest would lie to me’

Leader Comment: A shambles is no safeguard

Letter to the Editor from Andrew Graystone Bishops ought to clarify the change in culture on abuse (scroll down for this letter)

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church IICSA – A promise to ‘change the culture’ of the Church?


Opinion – 17 March 2018

Church Times ‘This is God’s best for me’
Kate Wharton tells Madeleine Davies about a ceremony that she did not grow up planning

Church Times How Stephen Hawking did theologians a favour
He had no place for God, and thereby reminded believers of the true purpose of cosmology, says Andrew Davison

Hayley Matthews ViaMedia.News The Stonewalling of Sexual Abuse…


IICSA hearings – Wednesday/Thursday 14/15 March

Transcripts for these two days are available:

Wednesday 14 March
Note: this item has been removed from the IICSA website, presumably this is only temporary.

Thursday 15 March

The appearance on Wednesday of former Archbishop Rowan Williams generated a increase in media attention:

Guardian Williams: church’s old views on gay clergy led to desire not to judge sexual activities
Telegraph Church overlooked sexual abuse by bishop because he was gay, former Archbishop suggests
Press Association via Daily Mail Sexist Church culture may be linked to failure to tackle child abuse – Williams

Church Times Lord Williams backs abuse survivors’ demand for independent safeguarding body at IICSA
Christian Today Church ‘overcompensated’ for conservative stance on homosexuality by treating paedophile bishop lightly
The Tablet Rowan Williams admits failings over C of E child abuse

The Times Archbishop ‘shielded from sex abuse row’ (£) and this is further explained in a report at Christian Today Church’s approach to abuse was to ‘stonewall’ and ‘say nothing’, says Rowan Williams’ former aide

Further reports:
BBC Child abuse inquiry: Diocese had ‘major issue’
Christian Today Church has bias against abuse victims and ‘culture of deference and defensiveness’, bishop admits
Church Times I was shocked by what I found in Chichester diocese, Dr Warner tells IICSA hearing


Joe Hawes to be next Dean of St Edmundsbury

Press release from the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich

Joe Hawes, currently Vicar of All Saints’ Fulham, is to be the next Dean of St Edmundsbury, in the diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich.

A priest who substantially increased the number of families and young people worshipping at the major London parish he leads has been chosen as the new Dean of St Edmundsbury.

The Revd Canon Joe Hawes, Vicar of All Saints’ Fulham, who enjoys scuba-diving in his leisure time, will start his new senior role during the summer.

Bishop Martin, said there had been a strong field of applicants with more candidates than usual for a Dean’s post.

“I am delighted that it was a unanimous decision to appoint Joe. He is an outstanding and Godly priest. He is warm, engaging, caring and fun. He brings energy and wisdom, and a huge amount of experience in parish ministry.

“He has been Vicar of All Saints’ in Fulham for 15 years, and increased the regular congregation by 25% to more than 500 each Sunday, with a particular ministry with families and young people.

“In Fulham he has developed worship to be engaging and accessible for people of different backgrounds and ages, and a church looking outwards, engaged in loving service with those in need.

“He has strong leadership and organisational skills, sees the cathedral as serving the whole county, not just Bury St Edmunds, and I look forward to working with him across the county for the greater good.”

Roger Wright, Chief Executive of Aldeburgh Music, who was appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury to lead the process of finding a new Dean, said: “It was a pleasure and privilege to chair the panel for this appointment.

“His considerable experience, and his warm and engaging personality will help the cathedral be a beacon of hope for Suffolk as it broadens its appeal to all.

“Joe will be strong and thoughtful leader in this new period of the life of the cathedral and we very much look forward to his presence in the diocese.”

Canon Joe’s parish of All Saints’ Fulham has been developing its broadcasting profile, the Christmas Day the service was live on BBC1, and Palm Sunday Morning worship will be broadcast on Radio 4 on 25 March.

Canon Joe, who will become one of the most senior Church of England figures in Suffolk, said: “I am really looking forward to getting to know the people of Suffolk and to taking my place among the Bishop’s Staff.

“I am keen to see even more people discover the beauty of the cathedral. We need to build our financial reserves so that we can further develop our excellence within music, worship, learning and care to the highest possible standards.

“We need to provide a place which is both sanctuary in an uncertain world, and also a forum for debate and reflection on the major questions which are challenging us as a society at the moment.”

Canon Joe, 52, is in a civil partnership with the Revd Chris Eyden, the vicar of All Saints’ Putney, who will remain serving in Putney for the time being.

Bishop Martin said he is looking forward to welcoming Joe, and Chris when he is able to be in the county.

Canon Joe will be installed as the Dean of St Edmundsbury in the Cathedral on Saturday 14 July.

The Rt Revd Graeme Knowles, acting Dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, said: “The Cathedral Chapter are delighted at Joe’s appointment. He will bring many gifts, experience and skills from his present ministry in Fulham.

“Joe will be joining the cathedral at a time when our vision and strategy is taking shape, therefore he will be able to contribute greatly to our future plans for the cathedral, town of Bury St Edmunds and county of Suffolk.”