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News in Brief

02 November 2006

Statistics aren’t full story, says Dr Hope
THE ARCHBISHOP OF YORK, Dr David Hope, was “not happy” with a Sunday Times report this week which said that he had “conceded defeat” over figures putting Muslim worshippers ahead of Anglicans.

Dr Hope had “acknowledged the findings” when told that 930,000 Muslims attend worship at least once a week (compared with 916,000 Church of England worshippers), his spokesman said. But he said that he had found the reality “very different”: there were “huge numbers” of people who had an affinity with their local church and who were “hardly represented in official statistics”.

Assistant prison chaplain resigns
RITA CARROLL, a Church of England licensed lay worker at Garth Prison, Lancashire, has resigned amid allegations of a relationship with an inmate. The Bishop of Burnley, the Rt Revd John Goddard, said: “Mrs Carroll has worked out where her future lies with the prison authorities.” A diocesan spokesman said her licence lapsed with her resignation.

The Home Office confirmed that “an assistant chaplain resigned on 10 October following allegations of an inappropriate relationship with an inmate.”

Drugs law unfair to children, C of E society says
THE CHILDREN’S SOCIETY says that children will be unfairly treated under the Government’s cannabis reforms. These, it says, will allow adults to go free for possessing cannabis, whereas under-18-year-olds will be arrested. It “turns on its head” the principle that punishment for young people should be lighter than that for adults for the same offence, said Kathy Evans, policy and practice manager for the society.

Memorial service for murdered jogger
A MEMORIAL SERVICE for Margaret Muller, the artist stabbed last year in Victoria Park, Hackney, in east London, is to be held in the park a year after her death. Ms Muller, who was 27, was jogging when she was killed in the early hours of 3 February 2003. The service, at 8.15 a.m., will be led by the Revd Elaine Jones of St Mary of Eton, Hackney Wick.

Bishop Wharton to chair Porvoo group
THE BISHOP OF NEWCASTLE, the Rt Revd Martin Wharton, is to succeed the Archbishop of Dublin, the Most Revd John Neill, as co-chairman of the Porvoo contact group. The Archbishop of York was due to start a four-day visit to the Church of Finland, one of the Porvoo Agreement Churches, yesterday. He is to preach in Turku Cathedral on Sunday.

Ethiopians request return of artefacts
THE ASSOCIATION for the return of the Magdala Ethiopian Treasures wrote to the Queen this week to ask her to return six sacred manuscripts seized in battle 130 years ago. The illuminated works were taken by British soldiers when they invaded Ethiopia in 1868. An Episcopal church in Edinburgh returned a sacred artefact to Ethiopia in January 2002.

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