Thinking Anglicans

House of Bishops Meeting 17th-18th May 2021

Church of England press release

House of Bishops Meeting 17th-18th May 2021
18/05/2021

The House of Bishops met on the afternoon of Monday 17 May and the morning of Tuesday 18 May remotely via Zoom.

The Chief Operating Officer of the National Church Institutions gave a brief update regarding the new national Register of Clergy which went live last week. This was followed by a brief discussion covering issues raised during the roll out.

The House then discussed updated proposals relating to the Clergy Conduct Measure which were shared with the House in December. The proposals were discussed in an opening plenary session (introduced by the Bishop at Lambeth), followed by breakout groups and a final plenary discussion in advance of wider Synodical engagement in July. Amongst the issues discussed were the wider work needed to develop an appropriate ‘framework’ for ordained ministry in the Church of England, covering such areas as fitness to practise, ‘supervision’, ministerial development review, grievance procedures, and capability procedures. The House agreed to support in principle the outline of the proposed Clergy Conduct Measure as presented to the House.

The Bishop of London then addressed the House in her capacity as the Chair of the Next Steps Group. The House discussed engagement with the Living in Love and Faith (LLF) processes to date across dioceses. The House heard encouraging reports of good engagement and, in break out groups, considered how further engagement with LLF can be strengthened. The House discussed additional working groups related to the LLF process and agreed in principle to the formation of a working group on gender identity and transition under the auspices of the LLF Next Steps Group, details of which will be announced in due course.

The afternoon session of the House of Bishop’s then closed in prayer before reconvening the following morning.

At the Tuesday morning session, the Bishop of Sheffield addressed the House in his capacity as Chair of the Mutuality in Finances Group. The Bishop requested the House’s endorsement for the Group’s proposal for a July 2021 General Synod motion. The motion will enable a more equitable sharing of historic assets and give dioceses more freedom to be generous with these assets to other dioceses. The House endorsed the proposal for the July 2021 General Synod, which will be moved by the Bishop of Sheffield on behalf of the Archbishops’ Council.

The Archbishop of York then addressed the House with an update on progress of the Vision and Strategy workstream, including the proposed approach for developing the Vision and Strategy work through to the end of December 2021. An overall framework was presented and following breakout in groups, the House considered a range of strategic priorities, outcomes and actions to be taken. The House agreed to take note of the progress to date and identify key actions to assist the Vision and Strategy workstream.

The Bishop of Saint Edmundsbury and Ipswich then addressed the House in his capacity as episcopal lead for the Transforming Effectiveness workstream for the National Church Institutions. He gave an update on current plans to streamline and simplify the NCIs with the House agreeing to take note of progress and planning to date.

The Bishop of London, in her capacity as Chair of the Recovery Group, updated the House with the latest developments regarding places of worship and the easing of lockdown restrictions.

The House congratulated Archbishop Hosam on becoming the Archbishop of Jerusalem. The House also supported the statement made by Bishop Christopher the Bishop of Southwark, who was present at the installation.

The House prayed for peace and justice across the Middle East and noted with sadness the hostilities taking place at present.

Archbishop Hosam has asked for support for the Al Ahli Hospital, an Anglican project, which serves all who are sick and are brought to their doors and is in desperate need of funds.

The House noted with real concern incidents of anti-Semitism in this country and condemns all such incidents and prays for building communities in the nation.

The meeting concluded with a blessing given by the Archbishop of York.

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Kate
Kate
29 days ago

Oh so managerial. Is this the bride Christ intended?
 
Can you imagine what the Epistles would look like if St Paul had been cut from this cloth?

Last edited 29 days ago by Kate
Helen King
Helen King
Reply to  Kate
29 days ago

some brides these days use a professional wedding planner; perhaps that’s what’s happening here… never say the church is out of touch with contemporary culture!

Filigree Jones
Filigree Jones
29 days ago

Remind me who the ‘Chief Operating Officer of the National Church Institutions’ is? Is that William Nye or someone else? Even I can’t remember. A few names in here would help to humanise and inform. Bishop Christoper and Archbishop Hosam are identified but everyone else is just an office, why?

Simon Sarmiento
Reply to  Filigree Jones
29 days ago

I had exactly the same question, I have no idea of the answer. But if this person is responsible for the premature rollout of a very badly designed database, I can fully understand their wish for anonymity.

Rowland Wateridge
Rowland Wateridge
Reply to  Filigree Jones
28 days ago

The answer is easily found on Google, assuming that it is up to date: Rosie Slater-Carr. “Seek and ye … … ”

Helen King
Helen King
29 days ago

Ooh super, another LLF NSG working group. I had thought we’d addressed gender identity and transition in LLF already. Why revisit this again now?

Kate
Kate
Reply to  Helen King
28 days ago

It’s worrying given what Tina Beardsley has been saying. It’s hard not to fear that it will be regressive.

Jonathan Jamal
Jonathan Jamal
29 days ago

I would as someone of Arab descent, my late Father being a Palestinian Arab and an Anglican Priest, like to comment on the way this word Anti-Semitism is being used today. In an English Dictionary definition of the Word Semite, it describes Semites as the Sons of Shem, and Semites are not only Jews but Arabs as well. Some extreme Zionists both so called Christian and so called Jewish would go as far as to say that to suggest that Palestinian Arabs both Christian and Muslims are Semites as well, and not to arrogate Semitic identity exclusively to Jews is… Read more »

Kate
Kate
Reply to  Jonathan Jamal
28 days ago

Jonathan, that’s very illuminating, thank you. I really understand the idea of de-legitimising a group by excluding them from the language. There is a concerted campaign at the moment to exclude trans women from the word women because, if that is achieved, we can be excluded at a practical level too. I hadn’t realised that the same was happening in relation to the word Semite.

Stanley Monkhouse
29 days ago

When we got to the caravan we went to the shop in the villiage for pop and crisps. It was steep all the way up and when we got there we didden have enough money for a bottle of pop each so when the old woman went into the back we nicked a bottle of cherry pop. On the way back me and Kyle discussed pooling our resources in the future said we’d do it again but Jenny said it was wrong. Then we went to the beech and there was the biggest starfish I ever saw and I put it in the… Read more »

Last edited 29 days ago by Stanley Monkhouse
Fr. Dean Henley
Fr. Dean Henley
Reply to  Stanley Monkhouse
28 days ago

Professor Monkhouse you will never be made a Prebendary now! Am I bovvered? Is my face bovvered? I ain’t bovvered!!!

Fr. Dean Henley
Fr. Dean Henley
28 days ago

Mutuality in Finance Group. Has anyone asked the DBFs in wealthy dioceses if they’re happy to transfer assets to their more impecunious counterparts? I can imagine that there will be much sucking of teeth, some weak tea smiles and then a token amount offered. I’m not sure that the Tory party at prayer will fully embrace the current enthusiasm for levelling up. The parable of the talents may even be mentioned.

Sam Jones
Sam Jones
Reply to  Fr. Dean Henley
28 days ago

Good point. I assume DBF’s are independent and would not be bound by a Synod motion telling them to give some of their assets to other dioceses?

Stephen Griffiths
Stephen Griffiths
Reply to  Sam Jones
28 days ago

The message from the centre seems to vary wildly, ranging from an expectation of compliance (the house of bishops is clearly progressing the roll out of its self selected workload) to the denial of power wielded from the centre (remember the archbishops assuring us only the dioceses could cut clergy posts?)

Fr. Dean Henley
Fr. Dean Henley
Reply to  Sam Jones
28 days ago

That’s my understanding Sam. PCCs are also legally autonomous and can set their own priorities and minimum reserve policies. I imagine parishes in Hull, Bridlington and Middlesbrough might look askance at being asked to contribute to the cost of their Archbishop’s £90k companion.

T Pott
T Pott
28 days ago

Archbishop OF Jerusalem, after last weeks Diocese OF Europe.

Jonathan Jamal
Jonathan Jamal
Reply to  T Pott
27 days ago

When the Diocese in Jerusalem was set up in the 1800’s it was a joint exercise between the British and German Crowns, and the Diocese was set up originally for two purposes to be a Mission to the Jews in Palestine, with imperatives to wards their Conversion and to serve the needs of expatriate British and German people living and working in the Holy Land. The arrangement was that the Patronage would be shared between the British Crown and the German Crown alternating between Anglican Priests or Lutheran Presbyter being appointed as Bishop. The first Bishop was a Church of… Read more »

Angusian
Angusian
28 days ago

Is it any wonder that faithful, church going Anglicans are perplexed about the future of the Anglican church? Oh for the days of a ‘Doctrine Commission’ a ‘Liturgical Commission’ terms and contexts relevant to thinking Anglicans. Can no one get a grip on the absurdity of these titled, groups and advisory commissions, limit their number and focus their direction?

Simon Kershaw
Reply to  Angusian
17 days ago

Well there still is a Liturgical Commission, and one of the editors of Thinking Anglicans is currently a member of it.

Bill Broadhead
Bill Broadhead
27 days ago

No mention in this Pravda report of the fact that one of the four senior bishops is standing back from duties. It was left to one of his suffragans to communicate a slightly garbled message to clergy stating that the reason was to do with needing to focus on future leadership and issues of governance and reform in the diocese. Why would a bishop need to stand back from duties to do that, I wonder? The bishop concerned has ‘form’ when it comes to (not) bringing the infantry with him, so I am wondering if there were rumours of a… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
Reply to  Bill Broadhead
27 days ago

See later article on this.

Tim Chesterton
26 days ago

From criticizing the way their appointment announcements are phrased, to ridiculing the accounts of what happens at their meetings, to pouring scorn on their attempts to be good managers, to blaming them for the ways the church is badly managed, to finding fault with the fact that so few of them are academic theologians, to pointing out that so many of them have little parish experience… Who’d be a bishop? Anglicanism claims that episcopacy is one of the blessings we have to offer the worldwide church, but as long as I have been in active ministry we’ve spent far more… Read more »

Fr Dexter Bracey
Fr Dexter Bracey
Reply to  Tim Chesterton
25 days ago

It used to be said that Anglo-Catholics held a high view of episcopacy but a low view of individual bishops. Perhaps that has become true of much of the Anglican world.

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