Thinking Anglicans

Report from the December House of Bishops

The Church of England House of Bishops met this week. The following report was issued today.

Report from the December House of Bishops
12/12/2018

The House of Bishops met in London at Lambeth Palace from the 10th to the 12th of December.

The agenda was wide ranging. On the first day, the bishops considered the priorities for the Church over the three-year period 2020 to 2022. They reviewed progress with the Church’s body of work called Renewal and Reform, which is intended to bring more people to know the good news of Jesus Christ. They explored the Church’s mission with children and young people and made a renewed commitment to that mission. They agreed to examine some areas where Church law might be simplified.

On the second day the Chair of the National Safeguarding Panel, Ms. Meg Munn, addressed the House with her initial observations on taking the role. A more detailed briefing on safeguarding followed. The bishops engaged with the issues facing the nation in the current turbulent political climate. The Pastoral Advisory Group reported to the House on its recent work on gender, identity and sexuality.

On the third day the Bishops participated in exploratory work related to the Living in Love and Faith project.

The House of Bishops prayed for the nation and all our politicians at this challenging time.

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Simon Sarmientodavid RowettBill BroadheadWill RichardsPeter Owen Recent comment authors
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Judith Maltby
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Judith Maltby

I wonder if Ms Munn’s ‘initial observations on taking the [chair of the NSP] role’ will be more widely shared? And the ‘more detailed briefing’ that followed, will that be more widely shared? Perhaps they will. Isn’t one the ‘lessons learnt’ of recent years is that openness is key for making the Church a safer place? Can anyone put their hand on their heart and say that the Church of England has reached the tipping point where concern for victims and survivors genuinely and consistently outweighs our anxiety about our institutional reputation?

Richard W. Symonds
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Many of us had hoped Meg Munn – the new Chair of the National Safeguarding Panel/NSP, which is distinct from the National Safeguarding Team (don’t ask me why) – would pioneer a much-needed new openness in the Church of England. That hope diminishes with each passing day she remains publicly silent.

Simon Sarmiento
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Michael Mulhern
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Michael Mulhern

Interesting. No specific mention of any Brexit discussions – or the fact that David Liddington had been invited, but pulled out due to ‘events.’ The H of B can only be trusted to tell us what they want us to hear. What else are they not telling us that they are running scared of? It’s very easy to say that they ‘prayed for the nation and all our politicians at this challenging time’: but why is the national church seemingly incapable of publicly addressing this profound crisis at the heart of national life, with all the issues surrounding selfishness, ideology… Read more »

Alan Davies
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Alan Davies

Michael, there’s a good letter by the Archbishop of Dublin in today’s Church Times, and an engaging piece by Chris Baker that is, probably too politely, saying that the Church needs to do more and take a lead in the spirit of William Temple. The chances of either archbishop, or the H of B, doing this are virtually zero. As we descend into further tribal chaos and ideological in-fighting, and England’s profound identity crisis deepens with almost-certain catastrophic consequences (mostly for the vulnerable in society), is it not time for our academic theologians to step up and show some leadership?… Read more »

RPNewark
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RPNewark

Yes, but it’s a shame that the Archbishop of Dublin and Glendalough confuses, in his third paragraph, Europe and the European Union. He writes, “… with the prospect that the Republic of Ireland will be the sole primarily English-speaking country in Europe, …” It has oft been said that the United Kingdom (four primarily English-speaking countries) is NOT leaving Europe but IS leaving the European Union.

Kate
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Kate

That’s really not much business for 3 days of meetings