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16 July 2007

Comments

Bunny

Thanks for posting this, GV.

Good food for thought here about the relationship of church and state. -- I wonder how this analysis will correspond to the experience of state-registered churches in China, or perhaps more so, the unregistered congregations in that country (presuming them to be beneficiaries of/competitors with the work of the 'official' churches)? (I suppose one could also examine the Soviet experience for insights on this sort of thing, too.)

m0ok

What do you think of this worrying development closer to home..

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/6904057.stm

GadgetVicar

Mook,

Here's the diocese's response to the verdict. Note the part near the end, "in the light of the tribunal decision the Hereford Diocesan Board of Finance will now again look at its recruitment literature to make clear the teaching and requirements of the church in respect of the lifestyle of those in leadership roles". They'll make sure they are clear about what they expect of peoples' lfestyles, and not interview anyone they are reasonably sure is doing anything which is not in keeping with the teaching and requirements of the church.

The diocese's problem was inquiring into past and possible future relationships, when all they could do in law was inquire into the candidates's current way of life.

Maybe the question at interview is simply to ask directly what a candidate's view on 'the issue' is?

TRIBUNAL DECISION IS MIXED BLESSING FOR CHURCH
July 18th 2007


The Employment Tribunal in which the Board of Finance of the Diocese of Hereford, was accused of Sexual Discrimination has issued its judgement. The Tribunal found in favour of the plaintiff, accepting that the Diocese did discriminate against Mr. John Reaney in not appointing him to the post of Youth Officer within the Diocese.
Commenting after receiving the Tribunal’s Judgement, The Bishop of Hereford, Anthony Priddis, who gave evidence at the hearing, said he was disappointed but not completely down. “The Tribunal accepted that I did not ‘interrogate’ Mr Reaney and that I had acted in accordance with the teachings of the Church of England. It also recognised that the post of Diocesan Youth Officer falls within the small number of posts outside of the clergy which are within the religious exemptions of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003.”
The House of Bishops teaching document “Issues in Human Sexuality” spells out in some detail the General Synod statements that the Church upholds the teaching that sexual relationships belong within marriage and that this high standard to which all people are called is especially expected of those in leadership within the Church.
That policy was endorsed by a General Synod motion of 1987, the Lambeth Conference of 1998 and the House of Bishop’s teaching document “Issues in Sexuality”. That policy, to which the Bishop of Hereford fully subscribes, is that those of homosexual orientation are wholly welcome and entitled to participate in the full life of the Church of England
It is the duty of every Bishop to uphold spiritual, moral and ethical standards and the Tribunal agreed. However, in the light of the tribunal decision the Hereford Diocesan Board of Finance will now again look at its recruitment literature to make clear the teaching and requirements of the church in respect of the lifestyle of those in leadership roles.
In the light of the Tribunal decision, the Board of Finance will be taking further legal advice with a view to appeal.

Anni Holden, Director of Communications
The Diocesan Office, The Palace, Hereford HR4 9BL
Tel: 01432 373342 mobile 07889 186316
a.holden@hereford.anglican.org
www.hereford.anglican.org

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