Sir, - Having readthe reports about the diocesan reorganisation
under way in Yorkshire (News
Synod, 12 July), I am left wondering about the health of
supposedly prosperous dioceses down south.
Oxford, where I am, has a large central staff with many
depart-ments, 600 stipendiary clergy, four bishops,and four
archdeacons. Yet reports from our deanery synod tell us that the
diocesewas presented with a £900,000parish-share shortfall
lastyear, and has to borrow from the bank to pay the monthlystipend
Nearly half of the parishes in our deanery are defaultingon
their parish share at present. Indeed, this deanery as a whole
presented a hugedefault in itssharepayment last year, and yet this
is barely acknowledged or discussed.
I know fromfriends in two of our neighbouring deaneries that a
similar picture is unfolding there. I cannot help but feel that we
are sailing on towards oblivion, while the captain and his officers
fail to take the necessary decisions.
Is this a common picture across other dioceses?
Name & Address Supplied