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UK news in brief

21 June 2019


Legs akimbo: a new sculpture, Split Decision, by Sam Shendi, which was unveiled at Liverpool Parish Church last week. The artist explains that it explores mental health and depression

Legs akimbo: a new sculpture, Split Decision, by Sam Shendi, which was unveiled at Liverpool Parish Church last week. The artist explains that it expl...

Intersex organisations criticise Vatican teaching

MORE than 50 organisations and networks for intersex people, and 130 intersex individuals, together with 650 activists from around the world, have urged the Vatican to change its position on variations of sex characteristics, and to “defend and promote intersex people’s bodily autonomy and integrity”. In an open letter, in response to the Pontifical Congregation for Catholic Education’s report on gender theory (News, 14 June), the signatories say that the document “treats us as validly existing only when unnamed, and pathologised as subjects of forced and coercive medical interventions”. It says: “This will cause profound distress to many intersex people and our families. We reject these positions because of their intrinsic harm to intersex people.” The letter says that intersex people face “gross human-rights violations” around the world.

New Archbishop of Thyateira & Great Britain elected

METROPOLITAN Nikitas (Loulias) of the Dardanelles has been elected by the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s Holy Synod as Archbishop of Thyateira & Great Britain, it was announced last week. He has been a titular Metropolitan, serving as the director of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute in Berkeley, California, and now succeeds Archbishop Gregorios, who was elected in 1988.

Former school chaplain jailed for child abuse

GARY DOBBIE, 67, of Albi, France, a former Chaplain of Christ’s Hospital, West Sussex, has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for indecent assault. He was convicted at Hove Crown Court last week of assaulting seven boys and two girls between 1986 and 2001.

Community cleans up vandalised graveyard

MORE than 60 people helped to clean up the graveyard of St Andrew’s, Evesham, in Worcester diocese this week, after it was desecrated at the weekend. About 100 graves were thought to be affected. The Rector of Bengeworth, the Revd Mark Binney, said that the vandalism was probably a “heat-of-the-moment” act, but was still “awful”.

Hertfordshire church stripped twice by lead-thieves

NINETY per cent of the lead at St Mary’s, Furneux Pelham, in St Albans diocese, was stolen in two raids by thieves last weekend. Hertfordshire Constabulary said that the church now faced an “astronomical financial cost”.

Date set for memorial service for Lord Habgood

THE memorial service for the Rt Revd Lord Habgood, the former Archbishop of York, will be held in York Minster on Thursday 27 June at 11 a.m. Lord Habgood died, aged 91, in March (Obituary, 15 March).

Foodbank manager appointed OBE

JACQUELINE WHITE, the manager of a foodbank that covers Bodmin, Wadebridge, and Camelford, was appointed OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for “services to charity and vulnerable people in Cornwall”. She is in the congregation of Wadebridge Christian Centre and also active in Churches Together in Wadebridge.

Correction: Fordham All Saints Primary School in Essex was incorrectly given as the name of the school referred to in a recent news story (News, 7 June). The Revd John Parker resigned as governor of another church school.

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