Ecclesiastical court judgments – October and November

Review of recent ecclesiastical court judgments

Ecclesiastical court judgments in October and November have addressed the areas listed below, in which issues relating to exhumation have featured strongly.  Re Welton Road Cemetery Daventry attracted interest in the media and local  radio, and likewise, the CDM hearing of a further complaint against the Revd David George Huntley. Separate post have been published on both cases.

Prior to the publication of this post, agreement was reached between the parties in Re St. Botolph Longthorpe, the first hearing and Arches Court order of 6 October 2017 of which are summarized here. The Victorian Society has published a Press Release on the proceedings, and we will post a longer review at a later date. Likewise, a future post will summarize the lessons to be learned by PCCs from Re St Bartholomew Old Whittington. Continue reading

Ecclesiastical court judgments – September

Review of the ecclesiastical court judgments during September 2017,

September’s consistory court judgments have addressed the areas listed below. Two petitions were sought by a single churchwarden within the church concerned: Re St. Michael & All Angels Ashton-on-Ribble was initiated during a vacancy and sought permission to remove a lectern, which in the churchwarden’s opinion was taking up space; and Re St. John Out Rawcliffe  in which the churchwarden assumed a new stained glass window could be installed on the basis of the DAC’s recommendation. In Re St. Leonard Ryton on Dunsmore, the Deputy Chancellor approved a memorial which did not conform to the Churchyard Regulations, and consideration was given to the use of Glass Reinforced Plastic (GRP) for replacement of rainwater goods in Re St John the Baptist, Saints Lawrence and Anne, KnowleContinue reading

The last word on the “pews vs chairs” debate…

…or would that be too much to hope for?

Of the wide range of guidance issued by the Church Buildings Council (CBC), that entitled “Seating” is one of the more prescriptive, and last month we reviewed its application following recent consideration in the consistory courts. A further judgment has been handed down which re-states its advisory status, queries the rationale of an important aspect of this guidance, and raises important issues on the perception of aspects of the petition. Continue reading

Law and religion round-up – 13th August

Blasphemy in Ireland, flying spaghetti in Germany, silly hats in Canada – just a typical week…

Ireland’s blasphemy laws “least restrictive in the world”? Possibly, but…

The Report of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom 2017 noted that

“many countries in Western Europe, including Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, and Italy, retain legislation on blasphemy, defamation of religion, or ‘anti-religious remarks’, though these laws are seldom enforced. In one promising development, Ireland’s coalition government announced in May 2016 its intention to hold a referendum on the removal of its blasphemy law” [212].

Continue reading

Law and religion round-up – 9th July

Cake now off the Brexit menu…

…though not in the House of Lords for Pride 2017…

…but gluten-free is off the menu at Mass

Yesterday the BBC reported that the Vatican had ruled that the bread used in celebrations of the Eucharist must not be gluten-free. Continue reading

Law and religion round-up – 18th June

And in a week overshadowed by the horrendous fire at Grenfell Tower and the fallout from the General Election …

Access for Northern Ireland women to free abortion in England

On Thursday we posted Frank’s analysis of R (A and B) v Secretary of State for Health [2017] UKSC 41 in which the Supreme Court considered:

  • Was the Secretary of State ‘s failure to exercise his power to require abortion services to be provided through the NHS in England to women ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland unlawful as a failure to discharge his duty under s 3 of the National Health Service Act 2006 to “take such steps as he considers necessary to meet all reasonable requirements” for services?
  • Does the continuing failure to provide free abortion services in England to women ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland infringe Articles 14 (discrimination) and 8 (private and family life) ECHR?

The appeal was dismissed by a 3-2 majority, and we suggested that it is quite possible that the case is bound for Strasbourg. Continue reading