From the Bishop of Repton
Sir, - The dismay voiced at the General Synod that the Green
report was not to be on the agenda will be echoed well beyond the
membership of the Synod. This has nothing to do with allegations
against Lord Green or any other institution he has been involved
As reported, the report was deemed not to be synodical business,
first, because the funds devoted to its implementation were not
funds under the Synod's control, and, second, because the care and
development of the clergy was the "particular responsibility of
bishops with archbishops".
As correspondents and contributors to your columns and in other
places have shown, concerns with the Green report extend far beyond
issues about money, or even clergy care and development, as such.
There are assumptions about the nature of the Church
(ecclesiology), and assumptions about the nature of the crisis that
the Church is allegedly facing and how that should be theologically
assessed, which, with important theological questions about the
nature of leader- ship which the report fails to address, are
surely the business of the whole people of God, and thus entirely
suitable for the Synod to discuss.
As a suffragan bishop, and so belonging to a category not well
served by the Green proposals, I, with other members of the College
of Bishops, had only the most cursory engagement with the report
before it was published. As such, and as a participant in the last
(and now discredited) Leadership Development Programme, yet unaware
of and uninvolved in any sustained critical assessment of it,
and as someone about to take on responsibility for one of
the TEIs so noticeably excluded both from the framing of the report
and from those it recognises as worthwhile resources for future
leadership development, I am bound to acknowledge a degree of
personal interest in making these points.
But it may be that others will feel, with me, that the response
of the authors and champions of the report is in danger of
appearing both patrician and defensive. As an object lesson in the
management of change, it certainly leaves much to be desired.
Repton House, Lea, near Matlock,
Derbyshire DE4 5JP
From the Revd Ian Falconer
Sir, - As an alternative to the Green proposals, I suggest that
thoseselected to be fast-tracked into training for senior posts
could be flown to a hotel in the Cayman Islands and therefind the
realpool, jump in, and swim around in ever-decreasing
circles.Perhaps the project could be sponsored by HSBC?
Chesterfield S43 3TU