Thinking Anglicans

Bishop of Plymouth to retire

The Bishop of Plymouth, the Right Reverend Nicholas McKinnel, is to retire in August 2022. Plymouth is a suffragan see in the Diocese of Exeter.

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Sam Jones
Sam Jones
4 months ago

Is he the only person to have moved from one suffragan role to another?

Fr Dexter Bracey
Fr Dexter Bracey
Reply to  Sam Jones
4 months ago

No, his predecessor Richard Hawkins was translated in the opposite direction, from Plymouth to Crediton, in 1996.

Clifford Jones
Clifford Jones
Reply to  Sam Jones
4 months ago

Henry Montgomery-Campbell was translated from Willesden to Kensington (both suffragans of London) in 1942. He ultimately became Bishop of London, via the Bishopric of Guildford. David Galliford, who died recently, was translated from the suffragan see of Hulme to that of Bolton in 1984. Cyril Foster Garbett, when he was Archbishop of York, wanted to encourage translations between suffragan sees in different dioceses (see his book ‘Claims of the C of E’, Hodder and Stoughton 1948), but the idea was not taken up. Cecil Boutflower was Bishop Suffragan of Dorking from 1905 to 1909 and Bishop Suffragan of Southampton from… Read more »

Fr Dean
Fr Dean
Reply to  Sam Jones
4 months ago

How do suffragan bishops keep busy nowadays? There’s been a significant decline in candidates for confirmation.

Allan Sheath
Allan Sheath
4 months ago

I’m sure many in Exeter Diocese will miss him. Just after his consecration he came to my AC parish to preside and preach at our Parish Mass c/w smoke. Hesitant to sing the sursum corda as it was outside his comfort zone, he then said, “I will sing it – it’ll do me good.” A card-carrying Evangelical whose episcopal ministry was appreciated far beyond his own tradition.

Anthony Archer
Anthony Archer
4 months ago

There are currently eight vacant or soon to be vacant suffragan sees, including Plymouth. However, three are of the general PEV variety, Beverley, Ebbsfleet, and Maidstone. Of the other five, the process for filling Croydon seems well under way, and with an established area scheme in Southwark it was never likely that it would not be filled. Kirkstall was a new see (the revived Richmond) established soon after the creation of the see of Leeds, without which (it was argued at the time) the diocesan bishop would have had an impossible job. However, if that was seen as a transitional… Read more »

Verulamius
Verulamius
Reply to  Anthony Archer
4 months ago

The 2021 annual report for the Dioceses Commission is available on the Church of England Website. https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2022-01/Dioceses%20Commission-Annual%20Report%202021%20.pdf The following statements have been made regard to Penrith, Kirkstall, Croydon, Hull and Beverley. Penrith – following the departure of the Rt Revd Emma Ineson to the role of the Bishop to the Archbishops, the Diocese of Carlisle presented a submission to fill the suffragan See of Penrith. The Commission was conscious that it had only recently reviewed and approved the See and that the context had not changed greatly. The proposal to continue the distinctive work of Bishop Emma to develop links… Read more »

Anthony Archer
Anthony Archer
Reply to  Verulamius
4 months ago

Thank you for the more detailed homework. The decisions are as I surmised, with the possible exception of Hull. The almost routine filling of vacancies continues. I am not surprised, but believe there will soon come a time when this is scarcely credible.

Fr Dexter Bracey
Fr Dexter Bracey
Reply to  Anthony Archer
4 months ago

What I find odd about the Dioceses Commission report is that that body seems happy to recommend a bishop be appointed for all sorts of worthy reasons, most of which don’t seem to require a bishop. By all means focus on the challenges faced by coastal communities, continue public advocacy on asylum, migration, social and racial justice, develop links with young people etc, but none of these are specifically episcopal charisms, so why do we need bishops to do these things?

PatrickT
PatrickT
Reply to  Fr Dexter Bracey
4 months ago

Absolutely right. The explanations of appointments to the various suffragan sees make the dioceses commission appear both lamentably weak and also highly predictable.

Fr Dean
Fr Dean
Reply to  Fr Dexter Bracey
4 months ago

The thought of a new bishop of Hull pounding the streets in Bridlington, Withernsea and Hornsea bringing the ungodly to Jesus is a giggle. In fact it’s for the birds at the RSPB reserve at Bempton Cliffs. The truth is that there will be lots of committee meetings at Bishopsthorpe that need her/his attention and a national profile to maintain/enhance.

Sam Jones
Sam Jones
Reply to  Anthony Archer
4 months ago

It is disappointing that the dioceses commission appears to be willing to accept any old rubbish as justification for appointing a new bishop. Most of the explanations given would not justify a priest let alone a bishop.

God 'elp us all
God 'elp us all
4 months ago

Commenting, again, of the ‘work’/ role/ effectiveness of the Dioceses Commission, and no reflection on the qualities of any particular bishops … what a waste of time, as others have also observed. It’s good to see the Report, dated 10 Jan 2022, on its work published on the CofE website in time for it to be before the upcoming General Synod. The previous was dated 16 March 2020. A major review of the purpose and value of the DioCom, and bishops and dioceses (The Culture of Episcopal Ministry) is required, esp at a time of stress on parish/ ‘ordinary’ clergy,… Read more »

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