From Mr Philip Johanson
Sir, — The advertisement in the Church Times regarding the forthcoming vacancy in the See of Canterbury (Classified, last week) invites readers to write to Caroline Boddington, the Archbishops’ Secretary for Appointments, who, we are told, will share the information received with the Prime Minister’s Appointments Secretary.
Is there not a potential conflict of interest, in that Ms Boddington is married to the Bishop of Derby, who, at least in theory, is a potential candidate for the position of Archbishop of Canterbury?
In addition, it does appear strange that the Archbishops’ Secretary for Appointments is involved with the appointment of her future boss.
10 Ditton Lodge
8 Stourwood Avenue
From the Revd Steve Cook
Sir, — The selection process for the next Archbishop of Canterbury has already begun with the publication of a request for those with views on this matter to write in. Perhaps the first issue that should be discussed is a strategic one: should the next Archbishop be drawn from across the Anglican Communion as a whole or from the narrower confines of the Church of England?
At the present time, when the Anglican Communion is under stress from the tensions between different provinces and theological perspectives, it is all the more necessary to affirm the part played by the Archbishop of Canterbury as one who holds together the Anglican Communion.
It follows that recruiting outside the limited confines of the Church of England may be beneficial. It would build on the first moves made in this direction by the appointment of Dr Rowan Williams from the Church in Wales in 2003.
St Barnabas’ Vicarage
449 Rochester Way
London SE9 6PH
From the Revd Peter J. Mott
Sir, — I strongly disagree with the Revd Dr Stephen Spencer (Letters, 30 March) that “policy initiatives . . . properly reside with the Church . . . synods and councils.”
As Peter Ustinov pointed out, a committee can accept, reject, or modify an idea, but only a person can have an idea. This is precisely the point at issue with the Methodist Church over personal versus corporate episcope.
PETER J. MOTT
Bradford Diocesan Ecumenical Officer
The Rectory, 13 Westview Grove