Archbishops write to Independent Reviewer re: Sheffield See

In our 11 March post we expressed our agreement with the comments in Dr Sentamu’s  announcement that “there must now be time for us all to reflect” on events in Sheffield and in the wider Church”; we also suggested that it would be appropriate to refer the matter for assessment by the Independent Reviewer, Sir Philip Mawer under the terms of paragraph 27 in the House of Bishops Declaration GS Misc 1087:

Today, the Archbishops of Canterbury and of York issued the following joint statement indicating that they had written to Sir Philip Mawer to address the concerns that have arisen in the Church following recent events.

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Law and religion round-up – 12th March

Social media (mis)use in the news, hate-speech – and another round in the saga of The Donald’s Executive Order…

News from Trumpton

Obiter J reports that legal action has been commenced against President Trump’s new Executive Order of 7 March on the entry of certain aliens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. The new Order will replace EO 13769 on 16 March. The case is State of Hawai’i and Ismail Elshikh v Donald J Trump & Ors: Mr Elshikh is Imam of the Muslim Association of Hawai’i. It will be heard in the US District Court for the District of Hawai’i: the State’s Second Amended Complaint, seeking an Order invalidating portions of the Executive Order, is available here.

The Wall Street Journal subsequently reported that the Attorneys General of the States of Washington and New York had announced that they, too, will challenge it. Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson is to ask US District Judge Robart to apply his temporary restraining order to the new Order. According to a subsequent report, Oregon and Minnesota will also join the suit when an amended complaint is filed.

Brexit Bill returns to Commons Continue reading

The Stirrings in Sheffield

The See of Sheffield: What next?

On 8 March, the Rt Rev Philip North, Bishop of Burnley, announced his decision that he felt unable to take up the nomination as Bishop of Sheffield; he commented that the news of his nomination had elicited a strong reaction within the diocese and some areas of the wider Church, and included highly individualised attacks upon him. The announcement from No 10 stated: “[t]he Archbishop of York will in due course submit the name of an alternative candidate for this diocese”. In view of the complexities involved in the appointment of diocesan bishops, it would be unwise to read too much into this gobbet of “civil servant speak”; this post examines what is, and what is not known of the next steps in the appointment of a bishop in the See of Sheffield. Continue reading

Statement from Philip North on withdrawal of acceptance of nomination to See of Sheffield

The Church of England has released the following statement by the Bishop of Burnley, the Rt Revd Philip North, on his decision to withdraw his acceptance of nomination to the See of Sheffield:

“It is with regret and sadness that I have decided that I am unable to take up the nomination as Bishop of Sheffield.

The news of my nomination has elicited a strong reaction within the diocese and some areas of the wider Church. It is clear that the level of feeling is such that my arrival would be counter-productive in terms of the mission of the Church in South Yorkshire and that my leadership would not be acceptable to many. Continue reading

Newsflash: Philip North withdraws acceptance of nomination

The Prime Minister’s Office has just released the following:

9 March 2017 at 5:12pm

The Right Reverend Philip John North was nominated as Bishop of Sheffield but later withdrew his acceptance of the nomination.

9 March 2017 update: The Rt Rev Philip North has withdrawn, for personal reasons, acceptance of his nomination by the Crown Nominations Commission as the next Bishop of Sheffield. The Archbishop of York will in due course submit the name of an alternative candidate for this diocese.

Law and religion round-up – 5th March

Brexit rumbles on, but perhaps the most important event of the week was the outcome of the Northern Ireland Assembly Election – on which we would not presume to comment…

Son (or more accurately daughter) of Miller?

Gina Miller, who mounted the successful challenge in the Supreme Court to the Prime Minister’s proposal to trigger Article 50 TEU by using the Royal Prerogative, has said that she is looking at launching a new challenge if Parliament is not given a vote on the final terms of Brexit. Speaking to Bloomberg, Ms Miller explained: Continue reading