Bishop of Guildford to retire in September
THE Bishop of Guildford, the Rt Revd Christopher Hill
(above), will retire in September, after nine years, it
was announced on Tuesday. Bishop Hill, who is 68 in October, is the
ninth Bishop of Guildford since the diocese was founded in 1927. He
has sat in the House of Lords since 2010. "I will leave this
diocese with huge respect for its communities, and have been
constantly impressed by their level of commitment to the common
good," Bishop Hill said. "People here have a deep Christian
conscience which I have seen lived out each day. Some of my
happiest moments have been the many baptism and confirmation
services throughout the diocese, involving so many children and
adults from all walks of life - it is truly inspirational to be at
the focal point of people's coming to faith."
Ecumenism not an optional extra, says Welby
GOOD ecumenical relations are the
"oxygen of mission and evangelism", the Archbishop of Canterbury
said last Friday. Speaking at St Philip's, Leicester, during a
visit to the diocese, to members of the Meissen Commission, an
ecumenical programme between English and German Churches,
Archbishop Welby said: "Ecumenism is not an extra that one can fit
in because it's an interesting occupation. It is the oxygen of
mission and evangelism." The financial crisis had challenged
churches in Europe to ensure that they remained "hospitable"
places, which meant that they should "extend friendship and
hospitality to each other. . . These challenges cannot be met if
churches are divided."
Discrimination appeals rejected
THE Grand Chamber of the Council of Europe announced
on Tuesday that it had rejected a request by three Christians to
refer their cases to it.
In January, the European Court of Human Rights rejected the cases
of alleged religious discrimination brought by Shirley Chaplin (a
nurse prohibited from wearing a cross); Lillian Ladele (a former
registrar dismissed for refusing to conduct civil partnerships);
and Gary McFarlane (a counsellor for Relate, dismissed over
concerns about his attitude towards the provision of psychosexual
therapy to same-sex couples) (
News, 18 January).