Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 9 February 2022

David Mitchell The Guardian Having a laugh in church? God forbid
“A cathedral’s plan to host standup comedy has been criticised, but if it keeps places of worship relevant I’m a believer”

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Unfinished Business at Christ Church Oxford

Archbishop Cranmer Christ Church’s magic £millions make the Dean’s safeguarding risk disappear

Andrew Lightbown ViaMedia.News Why I’m ‘Crossing the Severn’…

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Susannah Clark
3 months ago

Thank you to Stephen for such a clear and well-focussed overview of the repeated persecution of the Dean. A sad and disgraceful episode, and a huge waste of charitable money. At the heart of the problems is not the dean, but those who have driven the vendetta against him, and the governance structures that allowed a handful of emotionally stupid and mean-spirited bullies to carry out this extended witch-hunt. As this core problem has not yet been resolved, the affair is far from over.

[Expressed statements are my own opinions.]

Simon Dawson
Simon Dawson
Reply to  Susannah Clark
3 months ago

Those of us who have been following this story are aware of the actions of the Christ Church censors over many years. But sadly the story being put out for public consumption is that the Dean has left because of pay dispute and a safeguarding question. The Dean’s side of the story is much less prominent, and the widespread public impression is that it was the Dean who was in the wrong.

Perhaps Luther Pendragon earned their pay after all.

For example

https://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/19906114.christ-church-college-dean-university-oxford-given-1-2-million-settlement/

and it is worth reading this piece as well, especially the final part.

https://cherwell.org/2022/01/23/dean-of-christ-church-indicates-support-for-resignation-deal-as-protests-rage/

Tony Bellows
Tony Bellows
3 months ago

Luther Pendragon was the PR agency at the heart of the barriers put up by Tim Dakin as Bishop of Winchester in his spat with the Dean of Jersey. You always know trouble is there when someone retreats to their citadel and lets Luther Pendragon to take charge as Christ Church also did. That spat destroyed the Channel Islands link with Winchester, a link over 500 years old, and now ironically Tim Dakin and Bob Key have both moved on (with early retirements in both cases), leaving a fracture in their wake. The good news is that the Channel Islands… Read more »

God 'elp us all
God 'elp us all
Reply to  Tony Bellows
3 months ago

Tony,

and at what cost, not just financial, and to what effect, there, there, there and there and everywhere? Is there a ‘lessons not learned’ revue ?

David Lamming
David Lamming
3 months ago

Adrian Hilton (aka ‘Archbishop Cranmer’) in his post ‘Christ Church’s magic £millions make the Dean’s safeguarding risk disappear‘ highlights the hypocrisy and malign motives of those who alleged that the Dean was a safeguarding risk and who either created or approved the ‘dodgy’ so-called ‘risk assessments’ that were appended to the CDM complaint made by Canon Graham Ward – a complaint that Dame Sarah Asplin, the President of Tribunals, kicked into touch by her judgment of 28 May 2021 (published on this blog on 1 June 2021 and reported in The Times on 3 June 2021 and the Church Times on 5 June 2021),… Read more »

Dave
Dave
3 months ago

from Unfinished Business at Christ Church Oxford.

“Graham Ward …. Canon Richard Peers …Both these individuals have subsequently played major roles in opposing and undermining Percy.  In the case of Peers, a CDM was eventually taken out against him because of his many alleged malign statements against Percy. In the case of Foot and Ward, their attacks on the Dean began much earlier, and stem from 2018.”

Clearly the behaviour of these two clergy needs to be looked at in the mopping up process. They too should move to clear the water.

Michael Mulhern
Michael Mulhern
Reply to  Dave
3 months ago

I agree. And at least one other Canon Professor, too. I am sure people are exploring grounds for bringing a complaint under the CDM. Presumably, the Dean of Tribunals will regard falsely attributing comments to a third party in a safeguarding report as serious enough for it not to sink under the ‘time out’ clause? One aspect of this miserable episode is that Steven Croft has shown himself completely inept: both as a moral compass; and as an agent of reconcilliation. Like so many bishops in the current cohort, he became a bishop because he was deemed a cheer-leader for… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
3 months ago

Sand being thrown in our eyes by those supplied with more money than [moral] sense.

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