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Twelve members named for C of E commission to promote ‘mutual flourishing’

04 July 2022

Diocese of Leeds

The Bishop of Ripon, Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, who is a member of the Standing Commission on the House of Bishops’ Declaration and the Five Guiding Principles

The Bishop of Ripon, Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, who is a member of the Standing Commission on the House of Bishops’ Declaration and the Five Guiding Princi...

TWELVE people of “varying backgrounds” have been appointed members of the Standing Commission on the House of Bishops’ Declaration and the Five Guiding Principles, it was announced on Friday.

“The Commission, appointed by the House of Bishops, will support dioceses with the monitoring of the implementation of the House of Bishops Declaration on the Ministry of Bishops and Priests,” a statement from Church House, Westminster, says.

The setting up of the Commission was recommended by the Implementation and Dialogue Group (IDG), established in 2018 in response to the Independent Reviewer’s report of matters surrounding the nomination — and subsequent withdrawal — of the Rt Revd Philip North as Bishop of Sheffield (News, 9 February 2018). It was tasked with reviewing how the House of Bishops’ Declaration and the Five Guiding Principles — part of the settlement that made possible the admission of women to the episcopate — are understood, implemented, and received in the Church.

Last year, the General Synod took note of a report from the IDG on whether the Five Guiding Principles, established in 2014 to enable those unable to receive the ministry of female bishops or priests to flourish within the Church’s life and structures, were still “fit for purpose” (News, 16 July 2021).

The members of the Standing Commission, which will hold its first meeting this month, are:
 

Bishops

  • The Bishop of Lichfield, Dr Michael Ipgrave (chair)
  • The Bishop of Fulham, the Rt Revd Jonathan Baker (diocese of London)
  • The Bishop of Ripon, Dr Helen-Ann Hartley (diocese of Leeds)
  • A complementarian Evangelical bishop. This position will become vacant when the Bishop of Maidstone, the Rt Revd Rod Thomas, retires in October. Until a successor is appointed, the Rector of All Souls’, Langham Place, in London, the Revd Charlie Skrine (diocese of London), will sit on the Commission.

Clergy

  • The Revd Dr Miranda Threlfall-Holmes (diocese of Liverpool, and a member and former trustee of Women and the Church, WATCH)
  • Canon Tim Goode (diocese of Southwark)
  • The Ven. Pete Spiers (diocese of Liverpool)
  • Canon Smitha Prasadam (diocese in Europe)

Laity

  • Dr Ros Clarke (diocese of Lichfield), who is associate director of the Church Society
  • Emma Joy Gregory (diocese of Bath & Wells)
  • Canon Addy Lazz-Onyenobi (diocese of Manchester)
  • The Rt Worshipful Peter Collier QC (diocese of York), Vicar General of the Province of York

The Church House statement says: “Members have been chosen by the House of Bishops, in consultation with the Prolocutors of the House of Clergy and the Chair and Vice Chair of the House of Laity, because of their experience and varying backgrounds.

“The membership has been carefully balanced to ensure there is fair representation of theological viewpoints and a commitment from all to the Five Guiding Principles and mutual flourishing.”

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