Anglican Conclave to ‘sift’ all candidates for vacancies to see if they are ‘appropriate’

Sep 15, 2021 by

by Archbishop Cranmer:

There is no doubt that the governance structure of the Church of England is labyrinthine, convoluted, inefficient and opaque. It’s what comes of half a millennium of Catholic and Reformed Erastianism forged out of a millennium of Benedictine continental rule and papal interventions from Rome. With all the disparate committees, boards, chambers, panels, commissions, councils and trustees, there’s an awful lot of time-wasting bureaucracy, energy-sapping officialdom, and money-wasting duplication. If you were to establish an ecclesiology from scratch, it certainly isn’t the structure you would choose to reify the Great Commission in England.

So a Review Group has drawn up Recommendations for Church of England Governance Reform. The Chair of the Review Group, the Rt Rev’d Nick Baines, Bishop of Leeds, explains: “The whole point of this is to simplify and clarify to increase transparency, accountability and effectiveness within the Church, which was proposed 25 years ago but didn’t happen. There should be one central body that governs the Church. The ultimate aim is to provide more transparent and accountable governance for the Church at parish, diocesan and national level.”

There is something distinctly un-Anglican about ‘central bodies’ with powers of appointment. This may be an ecclesial weakness and perpetual source of theological frustration for some, but it has historically been a mechanism for ensuring organic diversity in the church, especially in political outlook and theological worldview: there has certainly never been a conclave to sift candidates to ensure conformity.

Enter the Review Group, with its proposed Nominations Committee, which is to tasked with establishing “a community of diverse, appropriately skilled and appropriately knowledgeable people from which panels would be convened to oversee appointments and ensure eligibility for election”.

Read here

Read also: Led by laity, preaching wokery: Welcome to the Worshipping Hub (formerly the CofE) by Peter Mullen, TCW

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