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UK news in brief

24 June 2022


A surviving part of St Olave’s, Norwich

A surviving part of St Olave’s, Norwich

Protection urged for remains of St Olave’s, Norwich

HISTORIANS and archaeologists have urged Historic England to list the remains of the 11th-century St Olave’s, Norwich, recently identified in a former stable in Cherry Tree Yard, in the city centre. The campaign group Save Britain’s Heritage opposes redevelopment plans for Anglia Square.

Contactless gifts raise thousands in Cumbria

ALMOST £85,000 has been raised from a year-long national pilot scheme to encourage online and contactless giving in churches across Cumbria. Last May, 110 contactless donation units were given to churches across the diocese of Carlisle in the first of three pilot schemes, funded by a £1.25-million investment from the national Church in digital giving (News, 28 May 2021). Churches in Southwark and St Edmundsbury & Ipswich dioceses joined the trial later in the year. Most churches received either a portable/wall-mounted device or, where no WiFi or mobile signal was available, a hand-held one. A pedestal-mounted device was installed in six churches. The diocesan Stewardship Enabler, Sophie Hodge, said that tourism put Cumbrian churches in a strong position for contactless donations.

Refugee Week marked by messages

THE opportunity to celebrate the contribution of refugees and migrants in Wales this week “has been impaired by new legislation that has criminalised many seeking safety” and by “the first shameful attempt to deport asylum-seekers to Rwanda”, the Bishop of Llandaff, the Rt Revd June Osborne, has said. The Bishop of London, the Rt Revd Sarah Mullally, wrote on Twitter on Monday: “This #WorldRefugeeDay I am praying for those who have no place to call their own, who are fleeing danger, homeless and hungry.”

Hereford Cathedral releases children’s gaming app

A NEW story-based gaming app for children has been released by Hereford Cathedral to entertain and challenge its young visitors. Users of Rapscallion’s Revenge, The Hoodlum of Hereford are invited to “solve riddles and help save the cathedral from being taken over by Lord Rapscallion who is trying to secure his legacy by tricking famous cathedrals and cities into creating monuments and chapels in his honour”. A free trial of the game is available for Android and iOS or by scanning a QR code at the cathedral entrance; the full game costs £3.49.

Quakers welcome Jones report on prisons

THE Quakers have welcomed the report from the Independent Commission into the Experience of Victims and Long-term Prisoners, published last week. The Commission was led by a former Bishop of Liverpool and Bishop for Prisons, Bishop James Jones, and calls for a national debate on sentencing for serious crimes. A former prison governor and Quaker restorative-justice specialist, Tim Newell, said: “Serious crime is life-changing, for both perpetrators and victims and their families, but rehabilitation, or the potential for healing of wounds inflicted by the crime and its punishment, is largely overlooked in a criminal justice system focused on retribution.”

Back farmers for food security, says Seeley

FARMERS are facing “huge challenges” with rising costs, abattoirs’ not being able to take animals, and changes in government policy, the Bishop of St Edmundsbury & Ipswich, the Rt Revd Martin Seeley, has written. In an article for the East Anglian Daily Times on Monday, Bishop Seeley wrote: “So many farmers are on their own — particularly elderly farmers distressed about what’s going on in terms of costs. . . You would hope that the terrible situation in the Ukraine is making people realise that we really need to be much more food secure than we are, and that means providing the right support for farmers to provide the food that we need.”

Clarification. Last week’s report on the General Synod of the Scottish Epis­copal Church stated that a motion to change the way in which bishops are elected achieved a two-thirds majority in all Houses, but by only one vote in the House of Clergy. In fact, the motion required only a simple majority in each House. It was carried in the House of Clergy by 35-17, with no recorded abstentions, and in the Laity by 40-11, with one recorded abstention.

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