Updated again Sunday
This case continues to yield amazing quotations.
Two more reports just in:
…When pressed on what damage Canon Pemberton’s appointment would have caused, Rev Inwood said: “There would be no harm to the trust in granting the license and no harm to the church.”
Employment Judge Peter Britton said the bishop’s decision highlighted an “innate conundrum” for the church and questioned how something that is not harmful to the church can be so fundamental to the doctrine as to cause the license to be denied.
He said: “This is a busted flush isn’t it?”
In response Rev Inwood said: “I think put like that I would agree with you Sir.”
Press Association via the Guardian Recruiting married gay priest would not have harmed church, bishop admits
…Inwood was asked by Sean Jones QC, acting for Pemberton, what harm he thought it would do the Church of England to have granted a licence to allow the 59-year-old to be appointed as chaplain. “We know that Canon Pemberton wanted to join. In your view he was perfectly capable, you had no reason to believe he wasn’t. He was the trust’s preferred candidate, and that when you refused the licence, at very least, the man responsible for making recommendations to the trust was anxious to get you to think again. We know the House of Bishops guidance did not require you not to grant. And you say you took the decision. What was it you feared would happen?
What harm would arise if you gave Canon Pemberton the licence?”
Inwood replied: “It is not a matter of danger but by my own oath of honour and obedience, under authority, to maintain the doctrine of the church.
It’s my own personal decision.”
Jones asked: “You weren’t anticipating any harm, whether to him, to you, or the trust? The bishop replied: “Certainly no harm to the trust or the church.”
The tribunal judge, Peter Britton, picking up on this answer, suggested it left him with a conundrum. He asked the bishop: “If it would be no harm to the church, and the doctrine is about protecting the beliefs of the church, then haven’t you got an innate conundrum? If it so fundamental to the doctrine, thus the breach would cause harm. But if you think it is of no harm to the church surely that means the reliance on this being fundamentally doctrinal, as to otherwise bring down harm on the church, is a busted flush isn’t it?
Inwood agreed but later added that he would have felt granting the licence would have been incompatible with guidance issued by the Church of England’s bishops in March 2014…
Ian Paul has this further analysis: Is wrong doctrine harmful?
The Church Times carries this report in its online edition: Same-sex marriage ‘certainly irregular’, Inwood tells tribunal