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The News Centre
Archived News Headlines for Jul/Aug/Sep 2001

Link to main News Archives page

If you are having trouble finding something, don't forget to try AO Search. 

30 September 2001: Tension in Nigeria
Newswatch (Lagos) reports that police commands in different parts of Nigeria are working to ensure that the sectarian carnage in Jos does not spill over to other major towns in the country. That same newspaper carried an interview with Michael Boatmang, deputy governor of the state Jos is in.

30 September 2001: To laugh, or to cry? We aren't sure
The Telegraph (London) reports that the people who produced the 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire?' television programme are gearing up to produce 'Who is the cleverest cleric?', a competition among priests in Britain. We are speechless.

30 September 2001: Remembering destruction of cultural icons
The Sunday Times (London) writes about the massive destruction of art and artifacts in Britain during the Reformation. The Observer writes about the same phenomenon in the context of recent events, and discusses an exhibition at the Tate gallery.

30 September 2001: People look to the Church for moral guidance
Paul Handley, editor of the Church Times and a gifted essayist, writes for The Independent about the role of the Church as part of its 'Home Front' series. The same series brings us Simon Blackburn noting that 'Religion has given us wars, pogroms and civil strife'.

30 September 2001: The once and future Trinity Church
The New York Times reports on the past and present and future role of Trinity Church, frighteningly close to the World Trade Center but far enough away to have survived.

29 September 2001: Hindu priest writes about terrorism
The Guardian has published an essay by Krishna Dharma, a Hindu priest, in which he points out that in the war between good and evil, one must start by knowing which is which.

29 September 2001: Archbishop of York writes about a 'just war'
The Most Revd Dr David Hope, Archbishop of York, writes in The Telegraph.

29 September 2001: Michael the warrior angel may show us the way to peace
This week's Credo column in The Times is by Mary Grey, D. J. James Professor of Pastoral Theology at the University of Wales, Lampeter.

29 September 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his column in The Telegraph this week to the Pope's visit to Kazakhstan.

29 September 2001: At your service
The Times' Ruth Gledhill visited St Giles in Imber on Salisbury Plain, and wrote about it in her weekly column.

28 September 2001: Retired Archbishop dead in Uganda
The New Vision (Kampala) reports that the Most Revd Yona Okoth, former Bishop of Bukedi and Archbishop of Uganda, died recently in Kampala.

28 September 2001: Miles Kington on The Internet Vicar
Humour columnist Miles Kington writes in The Independent about the fabled Internet Vicar. English humour, observes your News Centre editor, who is a Yank.

27 September 2001: Support for English clergy pay increases
The Guardian, The Telegraph, and The Times report that a 20% pay increase, the largest ever for the Church of England, is on the way. The Church Times' report seems to contain information that the other stories do not.

27 September 2001: Freedom and justice are good, but they do not pay the rent
The Telegraph comments on steep increases in rents for church-owned properties in England. (This is the Octavia Hill issue, which you may already know about.)

27 September 2001: Obituaries
The Telegraph published an obituary of the Ven Jeffrey Maples, former Archdeacon of Swindon and Chancellor of Salisbury Cathedral.

26 September 2001: Baptised Anglicans are now a minority
The Telegraph (London) reports that for the first time in the history of the Church of England the number of baptised Anglicans is less than half of the country's population.

25 September 2001: Parallels to the bombing of Coventry Cathedral
The Guardian has published an opinion piece noting that the 1940 destruction of Coventry Cathedral was not unlike the New York tragedy. Two letters to its editor offer reader comment.

25 September 2001: On the hazards of selling church properties
The Times reports that Church of England authorities who inadvertently sold the tombstone of a medieval knight to a scrap dealer are suing for its return.

24 September 2001: Christians in Pakistan
The Independent has more to say about the life and fate of Pakistan's Christian minority. (Last week brought this report.)

24 September 2001: Letters to the Editor about English bishops' letter
A few days ago, 11 English bishops wrote an 'open letter' that, although sent to The Times, also appeared in several other places. Today there are letters from the public responding to it. Some of these letters are extraordinary.

24 September 2001: Churches need extroverts?
The Times' Ruth Gledhill reports that a recent study shows that churches wanting to expand and attract men to their congregations should employ vicars who are extroverts, according to a report to be published today. 'Those that prefer to emphasise a “sacramental” ministry should go for neurotic introverts.' Some Times readers were quick to disagree, and a few days later The Times reported that perhaps the problem is too many bureaucrats in church headquarters.


23 September 2001: Archbishop to visit Armenia
The Church of England reports that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, will be making a special visit to Armenia this weekend (Friday 21-Monday 24 September) at the invitation of His Holiness, Karekin II, the Catholicos of all Armenians, to be part of the Armenian Church's 1700th anniversary celebrations. We do not know of an online press release that we can link you to.

23 September 2001: Leave God out of it
You may have noticed that Anglicans Online is not devoting huge amounts of space to the recent terrorist events in the USA. There are two reasons for this. The first is that pretty much every newspaper in the world is covering it in depth; there's no need for us to chime in. The second is that we don't think it has a lot to do with God or religion. Cristina Odone, writing in The Observer, agrees. In times of trouble people do turn to God, which is the right thing, but that's the extent of our coverage. Don't miss our page of links related to 11 September 2001 to find out what others are saying.

22 September 2001: At your service
Ruth Gledhill visited Wymondham Abbey and wrote about it in her weekly column in The Times.

22 September 2001: Fusions of the spiritual and the secular offer hope in dark times
The Credo column in The Times is this week by Alan Webster, Dean Emeritus of St Paul's.

22 September 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his weekly column in The Telegraph to a reflection on the morality of killing terrorists.

21 September 2001: Bishops' letter worries about a Crusade
The Church Times has published a thoughtful evaluation and analysis of an 'open letter' sent by some bishops to The Times. The text of this letter also appears in The Telegraph. We have not yet seen it in The Times. The bishops should have sent their open letter to the Church Times; then the other newspapers could have reported the event as news, and more people would have seen it.

21 September 2001: Church as village centre, even for nonbelievers
Anna Blundy writes in The Times (London) that the village church is filling a vital role, even for people who do not believe. We think this is probably a good thing, and we've certainly had a suspicion all our lives that at least some of the folks we see every Sunday in our own church do not believe, but come anyhow.

21 September 2001: Anglicans in Pakistan
The Guardian and The Telegraph have published articles about the mood among Christians in Pakistan.

21 September 2001: Catholic and Protestant unity in Ireland
The Irish Times reports that the Anglican and Roman Catholic archbishops of Dublin have issued a joint statement decrying violence against Muslims.

21 September 2001: Durham paintings to be sold
The Guardian (London) reports that the controversy over whether or not to sell the valuable paintings in Auckland Castle in Durham has been decided in favour of selling them. It remains to be seen, of course, whether anyone still has the money to buy them.

20 September 2001: Nigerian city still in crisis
Events half a world away have not slowed or stopped the rioting in the Nigerian city of Jos. The newspaper Tempo (Lagos) reports on the state of things there.

17 September 2001: People went to church
The Guardian (London) reports that, at least today, the crowds in a US cathedral were many times greater than recent norms. According to The Times and The Sunday Times the same was true across Britain.


16 September 2001: Links to Anglican-related web pages
Our collection of links to Anglican-related September 11 web pages is as complete as we could make it by our press deadline.

16 September 2001: Revenge is the death of justice
A N Wilson writes in his weekly column in The Sunday Telegraph that justice and revenge are incompatible.

16 September 2001: The Task
The Telegraph published a poem by Peter Pindar offering 'apologies to John Donne'. Worth your time.

16 September 2001: Carey prepares his memoirs in signal of early departure
Jonathan Petre reports in The Sunday Telegraph that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, has begun work on his memoirs - the clearest indication yet that he is planning to retire early.

16 September 2001: Oh my God, what are we to believe?
Paul Vallely writes in his column in The Independent on Sunday about God, faith, and human wickedness.

15 September 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his weekly column in The Telegraph to a reflection on how a good God can allow evil in the world. Come to think of it, nearly every newspaper in the world this week is publishing stories on this topic, though not all from a religious point of view.

14 September 2001: Church Times: How the United States should respond
The Church Times (London) has written a clear editorial about what the US should do. Perhaps US policymakers will not read it, but you should.

14 September 2001: Primate of Church in Wales was an eyewitness
The Church Times has published a fascinating interview with the Most Revd Dr Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Wales, who saw it all happen. The Anglican Communion News Service has a similar report.

14 September 2001: Major religious services in remembrance
Nearly every church in the world has held some sort of service this week to remember the fallen and their families. We cannot list them all; some are in our 11 September Links page. At St Paul's in London, the service (Times) included the Battle Hymn of the Republic, a sermon by the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the presence of Queen Elizabeth (Times, Telegraph) who was seen with moist eyes.

14 September 2001: Pope needs more help, too
The Times (London) reports that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the “enforcer” of Roman Catholic doctrine for the past 20 years, startled Vatican watchers yesterday by saying that the Pope was overburdened.

14 September 2001: Why people hate America
Gerald Butt reflects in the Church Times on 'Why America is hated so much'.

12 September 2001: Tutu says that ageism is replacing racism
The East Cape News (Grahamstown, South Africa) reports that Archbishop Desmond Tutu has spoken out against the welfare department in his country.

11 September 2001: Fight crime with prayer
The Telegraph reports that London's Metropolitan Police Commissioner told 200 church leaders yesterday that prayer is the most powerful way to fight crime. Somehow we'd imagined a scenario of 'give me your wallet or I'll read you another psalm.'

10 September 2001: Scores die in Nigeria clashes
The BBC reports that more than 160 people have been killed in three days of violence between Muslims and Christians in the central Nigerian city of Jos. The Guardian (Lagos) reports that the violence continues. The situation is so bad that it actually made the newspapers in Britain; The Telegraph reports on the conflict. We read a lot of news stories in British newspapers while searching for Anglican news, and we think this might be the first time in a year or two that we've seen mention that Nigeria exists.

10 September 1001: Church and state in Kenya
The East African Standard (Nairobi) reports that the primate of the Anglican Church of Kenya, Archbishop David Gitari, said it was wrong for Cabinet Minister Julius Sunkuli to have attacked the Vice-President in Narok over the weekend. Several days earlier, The Nation (Nairobi) had reported that Bishop Peter Njenga led mourners in dumping the body of a murder victim at a police station, to express anger at the police being so ineffective.


8 September 2001: Problems arising from placing the body above the soul
The Credo column in The Times is this week by Geoffrey Rowell, Bishop-Designate of Gibraltar in Europe.

8 September 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his column in The Telegraph this week to 'new movements' in the church.

7 September 2001: Consumerism is no substitute for God
The Independent (London) carried the text of an address given to the National Conference of Priests (Britain) by Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster. The BBC reported his speech with the headline 'Christianity "almost vanquished in UK"'. The speech was also reported in The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Times, and The Independent. His gloom about the decline of formal religion was echoed in The Telegraph by Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of Great Britain. However, the Archbishop of Canterbury disagreed, saying in The Times that it was 'an exhilarating time to be a Christian' and in The Telegraph that 'Christianity has nothing to worry about'. The Guardian ran this analysis of it all, and published this opinion piece about it. The Irish Times had this to say. The Telegraph published this dissenting opinion. The Independent ran this silly commentary, suggesting that radical Islam would fill the void mentioned by Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor. Perhaps to demonstrate that The Independent does indeed have adult supervision, that newspaper also published this snarky opinion column and an editorial titled 'The collapse of organised religion should not cause hand-wringing despair'. Owen Chadwick (a former Cambridge professor of Ecclesiastical History) wrote in The Times that 'The Lord moves in mysterious ways, even in this "faithless" country'. Letters to the editor of The Times are already published in response to the Cardinal's speech. The Sunday newspapers included this column by Melanie Phillips in the Sunday Times, this column by the inimitable A N Wilson in The Telegraph, this gloomy editorial and this sharp counterpoint in The Observer, this interview with the citizens of his home town in The Independent, and this rebuttal in a column by Joan Smith in The Independent.

7 September 2001: The Hurd report
The official copy of the Hurd Report of the office of the Archbishop of Canterbury was released today by the Church of England, prompting The Times to say 'The Archbishop of Canterbury could soon become the equivalent of an Anglican Pope', The Guardian to report that 'Overworked Carey needs chief of staff', and The Telegraph to report 'Archbishop should "concentrate on international role"'. The Independent combined the release of the Hurd report with the substance of the Murphy-O'Connor speech (see above) to conclude that the Archbishop of Canterbury is no longer 'spiritual director' of the English people and therefore needs a new role, probably an international one. Crusty religion reporter Andrew Brown wrote in The Independent that the Archbishop's only real role left is to manage decline gracefully. The Church Times published this summary, this editorial, and this analysis; The Times published this editorial saying 'Anglicans need to liberate the Archbishop of Canterbury'. The Associated Press ran this story 'Report says Archbishop needs help'.

7 September 2001: The Bishop's paintings
The Telegraph (London) reports that the Bishop of Durham does not want the paintings at Auckland Castle to be sold.

7 September 2001: Promise Keepers
The Kansas City Star comments on the upcoming Promise Keepers event in that city on 21 September.

6 September 2001: Evangelising in Ibiza
The Independent reports on efforts by various Christian groups to evangelise in Ibiza, an island resort in the Mediterranean.

6 September 2001: Commentary on church schools in Britain
The Independent (London) published a report that 'Church schools gain in power but critics fear their divisive influence'. The Telegraph reported that a senior labour union leader has spoken out against church schools. The Church Times filed this report.

6 September 2001: At least it wasn't Jerusalem
A man writes to The Times to note the music played at his mother's funeral. This is newsworthy because of all the hubbub recently about music at weddings.

5 September 2001: Bishops say action needed against Sharia
The United Nations (IRIN) reports that bishops from English-speaking countries in West Africa told the Nigerian government it must act now against the imposition of strict Islamic laws in northern parts of the country before existing tensions deteriorate into a Muslim-Christian conflict and spill over into other states in the subregion.

4 September 2001: Church and state in England
The British government has announced the nomination of the Rt Revd John Charles Saxbee BA DipTh PhD, for election as Bishop of Lincoln. The Times reports that he has been appointed rather than nominated (probably they are wrong here) and The Telegraph noted that the new Bishop admits to loving soap operas.

3 September 2001: Church advertising
The Times (London) deplores the advertising campaign launched recently by the Church of England. Meanwhile The Telegraph reports that attempts to evangelise with films shown to the young are not meeting with approval either. The Church Times concurs. A letter writer to The Times has something to say, though we aren't sure just what. Jonathan Petre in The Telegraph notes that the posters in question do not mention Christianity.


2 September 2001: Selling the Bishop's paintings?
The Sunday Times (London) reports on a plan to raise money for the Church of England by selling some paintings that are hanging in the home of the Bishop of Durham. Perhaps they will use the money to buy signs like those mentioned here.

1 September 2001: Boston notices English piercing attitudes
The Boston Globe (USA) reports that the Church of England yesterday rejected complaints about a series of advertisements, one of which links body piercing to the crucifixion of Jesus. Yesterday The Independent (London) quoted several people as saying the advertising campaign was blasphemous, and The Telegraph ran a long article saying much the same thing. It sounds to us like this advertising campaign is working.

1 September 2001: Diplomat in a dog collar?
The Revd Victor Stock, Rector of St Mary-le-Bow, reminisces in The Times (London).

1 September 2001: At your service
Ruth Gledhill of The Times writes about her visit to Buckfast Abbey.

1 September 2001: Do you honestly believe in miracles?
Matthew Parris asks readers of The Times whether they believe in miracles.

1 September 2001: Failure to fight occultism?
The Director of Communications of the Diocese of Oxford writes to The Times about the church's failure to fight occultism.

1 September 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his weekly column in The Telegraph to reflections on the history of working and doing business on Sunday in Britain.

1 September 2001: More publicity for retired bishop
The Guardian devotes yet more ink to the Most Revd Richard Holloway, retired Bishop of Edinburgh.

1 September 2001: Headstone must be removed
The Telegraph reports that the Church of England is insisting that a couple remove their daughter's headstone from a graveyard because it bears an engraved portrait.

1 September 2001: Queen Victoria worshipped here
The Guardian has published a nice retrospective piece about Queen Victoria's travels in Nice (French Riviera) and the churches that she visited.

31 August 2001: Not a model for church schools
Amidst all of the discussion about the value of church schools, The Times reports that a priest has resigned as head of a church school after being accused of slapping three pupils and locking another in a cupboard.

31 August 2001: Tanzanian police holding instigation suspects
TOMRIC News (Dar es Salaam, Tanzania) reports that police in Dar Es Salaam are holding about 20 residents suspected to be financing the ongoing crisis and demonstrations involving Muslim believers.

31 August 2001: Muslim Sheikh says that condoms are evil
Less than two weeks after the end of an ambitious and fruitful all-Africa conference on HIV/AIDS, the Standard Times (Freetown, Sierra Leone) reports that Sheikh Amid Mansaray, an Islamic scholar, has told Muslim youths of the Bo Central Mosque that using condoms as a means of either preventing the spread of the HIV/AIDS or protecting people against contracting the disease is evil.

30 August 2001: Tension mounts in northern Nigeria
The P.M. News (Lagos, Nigeria) reports that security agencies in Kaduna State have been put on the alert to forestall a possible breakdown of law and order following allegations by Christians in the state that members of their community are being routinely killed by Muslims without the state government taking steps to protect them. And the United Nations reports that renewed fighting between Christians and Muslims in Nigeria's northern Bauchi State over plans by the government to introduce strict Islamic law has claimed several lives.

30 August 2001: Trache sues ECUSA over Atlanta bishop decision
The Episcopal News Service (USA) reports that the Revd Robert Trache, who had been elected Bishop of Atlanta and later rejected from that position, has filed a lawsuit naming a goodly number of defendants. Readers outside the US may not know that one of that country's national sports is the filing of lawsuits to apportion blame for misdeeds. We at Anglicans Online, buoyed by the audacious creativity of Fr Trache's lawsuit, are considering filing suit against all of the millions of people who are Anglicans but who do not read our web site.

30 August 2001: Conversion to Roman Catholicism
The Times published these letters in response to the Credo column of 25 August that suggested people should convert to Roman Catholicism.

29 August 2001: Give them the money
Most public accounts suggest that the Church of England is running out of money, and there are controversies about how to allocate a shrinking budget. Today in The Guardian the Rt Revd James Jones, Bishop of Liverpool, argues that this is a flaw in government spending priorities. His essay prompted this reply by a charity director.

29 August 2001: The very model of a modern godparent
The Guardian (London) published an essay by Catherine Morris about the role of a godparent in modern life. We like it.

29 August 2001: Wren church attacked by deathwatch beetle
The Times reports that the only parish church outside London designed by Sir Christopher Wren has had to be closed after the discovery of the worst case of deathwatch beetle yet encountered.

28 August 2001: An interview with a prospective female bishop
Victoria Combe of The Telegraph (London) interviews Vivienne Faull, who might become England's first female bishop.

28 August 2001: Durham Cathedral is Britain's favourite building
The Telegraph (London) reports that Durham Cathedral has been voted the most popular building in Britain. That newspaper also ran this editorial about the building's selection. The Guardian commented the next day. And don't miss the article in The Sunday Times a few days later noting a plan to sell some of that diocese's paintings in order to raise money.

28 August 2001: Russian Orthodox church in Ireland?
The Irish Times reports that the Russian Orthodox Church is negotiating with the Church of Ireland to acquire Harold's Cross Parish Church in Dublin.


26 August 2001: Dog church
We can't believe that we are wasting electrons to draw your attention to a report by The Telegraph on the First Dog Church in Vermont USA. But the electrons are all recycled, aren't they?

26 August 2001: Doggedly churching
The Independent reports that more students than ever before are studying religion in Britain. Meanwhile, The Telegraph reports that a recent study shows that Church of England schools do not promote Christianity and lack the confidence to teach the difference between right and wrong. But the Church Times reports that two British church schools scored highest in a recent round of examinations.

26 August 2001: Clergy bodyguards?
The Independent (London) has some observations about violence against clergy.

25 August 2001: Sacred Mysteries
Christopher Howse today devotes his column in The Telegraph to the Queen's chapels royal.

25 August 2001: Conversion is a great step, not just another consumer choice
This week's Credo column in The Times is by William Oddie, editor of the Catholic Herald, who seems to be looking for new readers.

25 August 2001: Labyrinth
The Associated Press circulated a story about the labyrinth at St Andrew's church in Marblehead, Massachusetts, USA. Whenever we hear mention of that town, we can't help but remember a joke told us by a member of the Peabody family who had a sense of humour.... There was just one governor of Massachusetts who had four cities named after him. We can tell you that three of them are Endicott, Peabody, and Marblehead. Since this is a family web site we can't tell you the name of the fourth, but we can tell you that it's a bit to the west of Gardner.

24 August 2001: Paying St Peter but not St Paul
The Guardian reports that plans by the Church of England to change the way it distributes money to poor parishes is causing panic in the pews. It also ran this background story on church finances in general. The BBC also mentioned the change-of-distribution story. Meanwhile, The Telegraph points out that if all else fails, old cathedrals can be used to increase the market value of surrounding land. And the Church Times reports that the number of visitors to cathedrals has decreased significantly in the last two decades. Maybe the Coventry subplot of Connie Willis' book To Say Nothing of the Dog isn't so preposterous after all. Note: on September 1, The Guardian published a correction, saying the amount of money involved was ten times greater than had been reported.

24 August 2001: Peace in Sudan?
The Church Times reports that a joint statement issued by the Episcopal and Roman Catholic bishops of Sudan says that peace in that country cannot be achieved under Islamic law.

22 August 2001: Australian reaction to +Spong on Australia
The Sydney Morning Herald commented on 'The Church in Australia: A Ray of Hope', a new book by the Rt Revd John Shelby Spong, who does not live in Australia.

21 August 2001: Kenya to regulate church organisations
The Nation (Nairobi) reports that the government of Kenya plans to enact a law to regulate the registration of religious organisations.

21 August 2001: Diocese supports Jerusalem
The Telegraph reports that the Diocese of Chelmsford, adding its shilling to the Jerusalem wedding hymn controversy, has listed that hymn as fit for weddings in that diocese.

20 August 2001: More about banning the banns
A letter to the editor of The Times on the subject of wedding banns in the Church of England.


19 August 2001: New Australian archbishop says 'take Jesus to work'
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Sydney's new archbishop, Dr Peter Jensen, yesterday called on Christians everywhere to start spreading the word of the Lord on Monday - 'even if you're at the hairdresser's.'

19 August 2001: Use of the word 'bishop' as a pejorative
The Sunday Times, in an article otherwise uninteresting to people outside Britain, quoted a senior politician criticising the Prime Minister by saying that he preached like a bishop.

19 August 2001: Sunday Times on choosing the next Archbishop
Christopher Morgan writes in the Sunday Times about the process of choosing who will choose the next Archbishop of Canterbury.

18 August 2001: All African Anglican Conference on HIV/AIDS
This week has seen the All African Anglican Conference on HIV/AIDS in Boksburg, South Africa. It was attended by 130 delegates from 34 countries, and the delegates included the Archbishops of Congo and Ghana as well as bishops from Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Sudan, Burundi and South Africa. ACNS has released a veritable avalanche of news reports from and about this conference; see ACNS2583 through ACNS2595. If you don't have time to read all of them, try the welcome speech by Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane, Jim Rosenthal's first-day summary article, or Archbishop Ndungane's homily at the closing eucharist.

18 August 2001: +Rochester on organ donation
The Guardian (London) has published an essay by the Rt Revd Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester, on organ donation. He is referring to body parts, not musical instruments.

18 August 2001: More on Richard Holloway
The Independent and The Times and The Sunday Times each published an article about the Rt Revd Richard Holloway, former Bishop of Edinburgh.

18 August 2001: At your service
The 'At your service' column in The Times, written this week by Edward Symon, reports on the funeral of Brian Brindley. Last week's News Centre directed you to his obituaries.

18 August 2001: Faith and the fight for social justice must go hand in hand
The weekly Credo column in The Times (London) is this week by Stephen Plant, whom we presume to be a Methodist.

18 August 2001: Sacred mysteries
The meditation column by Christopher Howse in The Telegraph is this week devoted to the wearing of hats.

17 August 2001: On being Protestant in Ireland
The Irish Times reports that a bishop has claimed that Protestants find a growing tolerance in Ireland.

17 August 2001: Gay priests quit church over celibacy
Victoria Combe reports in The Telegraph that four Church of England priests have resigned in the last year in protest at the Church's ban on gay clergy having relationships.

17 August 2001: Turbulent priest, turbulent writer
Andrew Brown reports in The Independent on the life and times of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo.

17 August 2001: Can you love Jesus and journalism?
Speaking of which: Rob Brown asks in The Telegraph whether it is possible to be both a tough-minded, sceptical journalist and a committed Christian.

17 August 2001: gr8t is da Lord
The Evening Standard brings us up to date on the use of pager text messages to spread the word of God. We at Anglicans Online have never received any form of email from God, though we've gotten quite a few from a Nigerian widow with a lot of cash...

16 August 2001: Labour unions for clergy in Britain? Bodyguards?
The Guardian (London) reports that Britain's clergy are joining the ranks of other professions with grievances by complaining they are underpaid, overworked, under stress and seeking early retirement. Perhaps one reason for that is the discovery, also reported by The Guardian, that being a priest may be the most dangerous profession in the country. The Church Times also reported on violence against clergy.

16 August 2001: Thomas Bayes in the news
The Telegraph writes about the Anglican priest Thomas Bayes, whose 18th-century eponymous and posthumous theorem has had a huge effect on modern statistics and on the design of Internet technology.

15 August 2001: Jerusalem is still there
If you still care about the row in the Church of England over the use of the hymn 'Jerusalem' in a wedding, you can read this letter or this article or this article. We assume that the furor will die down as soon as there is some real news.

14 August 2001: Church and State in British weddings
An intriguing letter to the editor on the topic of abolishing banns in the Church of England.

14 August 2001: Accokeek makes Federal Court and New York Times
The New York Times reports that the dispute in the Diocese of Washington between a priest and a bishop has reached US Federal Court.

13 August 2001: Lutherans weaken Episcopal accord
The Washington Times reports that the nation's largest Lutheran denomination has voted to weaken an ordination-by-bishops agreement that is part of its 'full communion' pact with the Episcopal Church.

12 August 2001: On Alpha
The Guardian (London) reviews the British television programme devoted to the Alpha course.


12 August 2001: Revenue streams for royal chapels
The Sunday Times (London) reports that every royal palace in Britain will have a chapel and that the chapels will open to the public.

12 August 2001: Marriage requires AIDS certification
The Guardian (Lagos, Nigeria) reports that the Rt Revd Ignatius Kattey, Bishop of Niger Delta North, has said that couples without AIDS-free certificates would no longer be allowed to wed in the diocese.

12 August 2001: On offer: Cathedral views
The Sunday Times in its Property section notes houses with cathedral views on offer in Britain.

12 August 2001: Prayer is cheaper than locks
The Telegraph reports that Sir John Stevens, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and Britain's most senior policeman, is promoting a scheme under which thousands of churches across the country will "adopt a cop" and pray for their local police. And that same newspaper also reports on a group of self-confessed thugs, who once worked as 'muscle' in the East End of London, are now using their powers of persuasion to convert people to Christianity.

11 August 2001: Wonder at the mystery of the Universe is at the heart of religion
This week's Credo column in The Times is by the Rt Revd Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester.

11 August 2001: Sacred mysteries
The column in The Telegraph, by Christopher Howse, is this week about the growth of Islam. We hope no one mentioned in the article gets his hand chopped off by an Islamic court. And we somehow missed mentioning his excellent column last week, on Latin liturgy.

11 August 2001: Greenbelt Christian Arts Festival
Many communities have an area called 'Greenbelt'. The Greenbelt of our youth contained Eleanor Roosevelt's experiment in planned housing and Robert Goddard's experiments in rocketry. In England there is an arts festival that was once held in a Greenbelt but is this year held in Cheltenham, and Times columnist Jack Malvern writes about bishops attending the arts festival there.

10 August 2001: Full house at Mirfield
The ACNS reports that for the first time in over 25 years, the College of the Resurrection, Mirfield, West Yorkshire has filled all its ordinand-training places for the coming academic year.

10 August 2001: Newspaper notices Atlanta's new bishop
Every Friday the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Georgia USA) publishes a column containing a brief interview with some prominent citizen, in which the columnist asks the subject about technology and about his favourite spots on the web. This week's column carried an interview with the Rt Revd J Neil Alexander, new Bishop of Atlanta.

10 August 2001: Academic report on historical blessings of same-sex relationships
The Telegraph and The Guardian report that a research fellow at the University of London has discovered church memorials and graves for same-sex couples that date back many centuries. The researcher himself has written an article for The Tablet about it.

9 August 2001: Nationalistic hymn not permitted at English wedding
The British press is in a dither over a recent decision by a vicar in Stockport. The Times ran no less than five articles and letters (one, two, three, four, five) about this event (we only found four about the Archbishop's visit to Jerusalem). And then The Times ran this editorial. The Guardian ran three items (story, opinion, letter). The Independent ran this opinion column by Philip Hensher and The Telegraph ran this news report. The Sunday Times also had empty news pages to fill, so it published this opinion column. Sunday Telegraph columnist AN Wilson devoted his column to this topic, too. Zounds! This topic just won't go away. An interview by Ian Bradley on BBC Radio. The Scotsman (Edinburgh) published this editorial. Richard Holloway, former Bishop of Edinburgh, mentions it in his column in the Sunday Herald (Glasgow).

6 August 2001: Separation of church and state
The Times (London) and The Independent report on conflicts in England involving government-run church schools there. A few days later in another newspaper, crusty columnist A.C. Grayling argues that religion will never provide a moral framework for technological change, and that the state must sever all support for all faith-based groups and events.

6 August 2001: More on use of church buildings in England
The Times' Letters column continues the debate on the disposition of surplus church buildings in England with this letter from the Churches Conservation Trust and this reply from a churchgoer.

5 August 2001: The Guardian on the Synod
Pat Ashworth wrote for The Guardian (London) an interesting wrap-up of the recent Church of England Synod, about which we thought we had already heard the last word.

5 August 2001: Obituaries
The Independent and The Times and The Telegraph ran an obituary of Fr Brian Brindley, priest, writer, and Tiber swimmer. We suggest you read first the obituary in The Telegraph. The Independent and The Guardian published an obituary of Arthur G Dickens, professor and church historian. The Times published an obituary of Sir Martyn Beckett, church architect.


5 August 2001: Controversial sculpture of Naked Christ
The Telegraph (London) reports that a statue at Shropshire Abbey is prompting visitors to complain. The sculpture is made of sheep bone, rusted metal, and paper tissue. The Church Times coverage includes a good-sized photogrpah of the sculpture. We note that the sculptor is a frequently-published author of children's books about cats.

5 August 2001: Controversial sendup of the Lord's Prayer
The Telegraph reports that traditionalists are dismayed by the publication of two parodies of the Lord's Prayer, written from the point of view of an alcoholic and a shopaholic. There are days when we think that dismaying traditionalists ranks right up there with fox hunting as a national sport in Britain.

4 August 2001: Wedding banns may be banned
The BBC and The Independent and The Sunday Telegraph report that the ancient tradition of reading marriage banns may be abandoned to encourage more young people to have church weddings. The reading of banns, currently a legal requirement for a church wedding, may be replaced by a 'pastoral welcome' where the congregation is asked to pray for the couple. The Times reported the story two days later and The Independent offered this interpretation of the proposal.

3 August 2001: Hotel for priests
Victoria Combe reports in The Telegraph on the first hotel designed specifically for priests, in Heaton, on the outskirts of Bradford. We are told that Bradford is a holiday destination.

2 August 2001: Update on parish property dispute in East Carolina
The Episcopal News service reports the status of the legal wranglings over parish property in Morehead City, North Carolina.

2 August 2001: Carcinogenic incense
The BBC reports that researchers in Taiwan have found incense to be carcinogenic.

2 August 2001: Peter Tatchell preaches
Earlier we reported that activist Peter Tatchell had been invited to preach at All Hallows in Leeds. Today The Independent published portions of what he said.

31 July 2001: Archbishop's visit to Jerusalem
The Archbishop of Canterbury is visiting Jerusalem. The Jerusalem Post reports that yesterday he issued an impassioned plea to the dwindling number of Christians in the Holy Land not to leave the country. If you go to any news search engine and type the word 'Jerusalem', you will see that they have other ways of making people's numbers dwindle there now. The Times has a column by Jack Malvern on the Archbishop's meeting with Yassir Arafat.

31 July 2001: Crime spree in Toronto
The Anglican Church of Canada reports that its national offices were burglarized and vandalized two nights in a row. Police say it appears that the same person committed both crimes. Anyone who reads the newspapers should know that the ACC has no money to steal; this was not a well-educated burglar.

31 July 2001: Priests in space
The Church Times reports that a priest in Lancashire, UK is in negotiation with the NASA Space Centre in Houston, Texas, to be the first vicar in space. When we read this, we can't help but remember the 'Pigs in Space' skits on the Muppet Show.

31 July 2001: Bishops being bishops
The United Nations IRIN reports that the Most Revd Desmond Tutu is in the Congo, doing the things that good bishops should do.

31 July 2001: Australian synod strains under pressure
The Sydney Morning Herald published an opinion column by Chris McGillion that 'Liberal thinking is steering the Anglican Church towards a schism'.

29 July 2001: Churches unhappy with Bishop of Harare
The Zimbabwe Standard (Harare) reports that the Rt Revd Nobert Kunonga, Bishop of Harare, has come under fire from fellow bishops and church leaders for his controversial claim that there are no human rights abuses in Zimbabwe.


29 July 2001: News from Australia's General Synod
The General Synod of the Anglican Church of Australia is finished. Official coverage by Anglican Media Melbourne and Anglican Media Sydney was superb, and it is fascinating to compare them. The official Synod web site is encyclopedic but not easy to browse. Australian newspaper coverage includes 'Don't shift blame to us', 'Anglicans scared to release facts on stolen generations', 'Men ensure it's amen - for now - to hopes for women bishops', and 'Divorcees given hope to remarry in church' in the Sydney Morning Herald, 'Synod in attack on tough jail laws' and 'Church misses chance on women bishops' in the Courier Mail, and 'Anglicans learn to live with their differences' in the Canberra Times. The Sydney Morning Herald also reported that the Anglican Church officially lifted a 400-year ban on dunking.

29 July 2001: Life support
Stephanie Dennison writes in The Observer about Ugandan priest Gideon Byamugisha, who has discovered that, like so many in Africa, he is HIV positive.

29 July 2001: Ink about Alpha
There is a television series about the Alpha course from Holy Trinity Brompton running now in Britain and, as a result, a lot of talk about it in the press. Bryan Appleyard writes 'Answering the call of God and Gucci' in The Sunday Times. Sholto Byrnes writes 'Cult or no cult, it is getting Anglicans very hot under their dog-collars' in The Independent. It's not ink, but BBC Radio 4 broadcast 'Christian course accused of using manipulation techniques for recruitment' on Friday.

29 July 2001: Kingsway International Christian Centre
The Telegraph reports that the Kingsway International Christian Centre in Hackney, east London (already Britain's biggest church) is making plans to construct a 10,000-seat arena for its evangelical services. Somewhere recently we remember reading a comment by a bishop that there is supposed to be a difference between a religious service and a pep rally. Probably not here.

29 July 2001: Bishop Iker of Fort Worth attracts the attention of the press
The Dallas Morning News reports that 'A Fort Worth Episcopal priest embroiled in a national battle involving the authority of a female bishop will be investigated by a church committee whose majority are members of an organization that he recently led.' That same day, it ran this profile of the Rt Revd Jack Iker; it begins 'He's widely seen as the Rush Limbaugh of the Episcopalians'.

28 July 2001: Herefords saving 12th-century church
No, not cows. People. Report in The Telegraph.

28 July 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his column in The Telegraph to the dispute over the Roman Catholic cathedral in Milwaukee, USA.

28 July 2001: Bishop threatens to quit if churches close
Victoria Combe reports in The Telegraph that the Bishop of London has said he will resign if the Church of England closes any churches in the city's poorest boroughs.

27 July 2001: Archbishop of Canterbury in Jerusalem
The Jerusalem Post reports on the arrival of the Archbishop in Jerusalem. The BBC interviewed him after he got there. The ACNS released this introduction, this schedule for his trip, and published this text of his sermon in the Cathedral there.

27 July 2001: Archbishop of Canterbury on Jerusalem and church schools
The Most Revd Dr George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury, writes in today's Telegraph about his trip to Jerusalem and his opinions about church schools.

27 July 2001: People marry older, when they marry at all
The Church Times reports that the number of marriages in England and Wales fell by almost a quarter between 1989 and 1999.

26 July 2001: Reflections on Islamic law in Nigeria
This Day (Lagos, Nigeria) ran this opinion column about the experience so far with Sharia—Islamic law—in Nigeria. You can do your own reflecting on Sharia after reading this article from The Guardian (Lagos) about a Sharia court in northern Nigeria sentencing a teenager to the amputation of one of his hands for petty theft. And the IJC in Lagos reports that the state government of Zamfara is preparing to set up a government-sponsored television station named 'Voice of Islam', whose purpose is to spread the Islamic religion.

26 July 2001: English priests return Russian icons
The Telegraph reports that three Russian icons have been returned to a remote monastery in the White Sea after spending more than 80 years in safe keeping in England.

26 July 2001: Surprise resignation of Canadian bishop
The Anglican Church of Canada announced that aboriginal Bishop Gordon Beardy of Keewatin has submitted his resignation.

26 July 2001: New coadjutor in Colombia
The Episcopal News Service reports that Francisco José Duque Gómez was consecrated bishop coadjutor of the Diocese of Colombia at St. Alban's Church, Bogotá on July 14, 2001. Duque, a member of the Episcopal Church's Executive Council, is the first Colombian "cradle Episcopalian" to be elected to lead the diocese, and its fourth bishop.

25 July 2001: Melanesian Brotherhood members awarded Solomon Islands Medal
The Anglican Communion News Service reports that the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands has awarded the Solomon Islands Medal to 22 members of the Melanesian Brotherhood, the Society of St Francis and their chaplain.

25 July 2001: Obituaries
Obituary in The Independent of Fr Herbert McCabe, priest and theologian. Obituary in The Telegraph and The Independent and The Times of Prebendary Winnington Kennedy-Bell, broadcaster, singer, and reader. Obituary in The Guardian of Dorothy Howell-Thomas, social thinker. Obituary in The Telegraph of the Rt Revd William Llewellyn, former bishop in the Diocese of Norwich.

25 July 2001: More AMiB
The Times reports on the plans in progress to send missionaries from other countries into Britain to convert the British back to Christianity. Good luck.

24 July 2001: They're still fighting in Accokeek
The Washington Times reports on the status of the presentment filed against Bishop Jane Dixon in the Diocese of Washington. The Episcopal News Service has issued this release on the Dixon presentment.

23 July 2001: Canon is banned from preaching
Ruth Gledhill reports in The Times that a senior Church of England clergyman has been banned from preaching in a town’s church after he said in a sermon that the Bible was “not the word of God". Soon the Chancellor of Wells Cathedral wrote a letter in support of that clergyman.

23 July 2001: Nigerian Primate says AMiA has no future
The Church of Nigeria has published an interview with the Primate of All Nigeria, Archbishop Peter Akinola, which covers primarily the issue of whether or not there is a crisis in the US Episcopal Church and whether or not the AMiA is the solution to that crisis. Nigeria has more churchgoing Anglicans than any other country in the world.


23 July 2001: Australia finds the 'sex' issue, too
The news at the Anglican Church of Australia Synod is mostly breaking after our press deadline, so we cannot cover it thoroughly this week. We will probably file a midweek update with Australian news. We have noted 'Sex before marriage threatens church union' in the Sydney Morning Herald and 'Church head lambasts nod for premarital sex' in the Courier Mail (Brisbane).

22 July 2001: Wrap-up report on Church of England synod
Anglicans Online correspondent Peter Owen has filed this report on this month's Church of England General Synod. Peter's reports are always very clear and direct, and well worth your attention.

22 July 2001: Synod underway in Australia
The Anglican Church of Australia is having its 12th General Synod. Official coverage is on the ACA's web site. You can sift through the raw material or you can read the media releases. It is the first General Synod to be held in Brisbane and only the third to be held outside Sydney in the church's history. The only mention we have found in Australian newspapers is this article in the Sydney Morning Herald about the refugee issue and this in The Age (Melbourne) about the homosexuality issue. We would be grateful to any Anglicans Online reader who sent us the URL of any online news coverage of this Synod.

22 July 2001: Alpha on British television
The Observer (London) reports on the first 1-hour episode of the television programme about the Alpha course, made by David Frost for British audiences. The Sunday Telegraph reports on the Alpha phenomenon and the television series.

22 July 2001: New publishing genre: the Christian romance
The Observer reports on a new phenomenon about to hit British bookstores: the Christian romance novel. 'They make Barbara Cartland's pastel-hued romances look like raunchy thrillers and Bridget Jones's gentle ruminations on sex seem positively perverted.'

22 July 2001: Furor over street language in the Church Times
There are two dead-tree Anglican newspapers that circulate in Great Britain. One is called the Church Times, and the other is called the Church of England Newspaper. We often note news items from the Church Times, and on occasion note them from the Church of England Newspaper. Today in The Telegraph, Jonathan Petre reports 'The venerable Church of England newspaper, the Church Times, has ventured where many of its secular counterparts still fear to tread by using the F-word in its latest issue.' The Independent commented the next day 'Church Times makes its first unholy foray into Anglo-Saxon'.

22 July 2001: Archbishop hits out at ban on gay clergy
Jonathan Petre in The Telegraph reports that 'One of Britain's most senior Anglican bishops has reopened the Church of England's most divisive debate by attacking the ban on clergy who are active homosexuals.'

22 July 2001: St Paul's Cathedral as theme park
The Telegraph (London) reports that St Paul's Cathedral is repackaging itself as a place of 'spectacular adventure' to try to boost flagging visitor figures. The promotion sells the cathedral along the lines of a family theme park.

21 July 2001: Archbishop Carey to visit Jerusalem
The Church Times reports that the Archbishop of Canterbury is to be in the Holy Land from Friday 27 July to Monday 30 July. He has been invited to visit by the Bishop in Jerusalem, the Rt Revd Riah Abu El-Assal.

21 July 2001: The Times on Alpha
Julia Llewellyn Smith of The Times writes about the Alpha programme at Holy Trinity Brompton. 'What makes hip young professionals speak in tongues, fear the flames of Hell and denounce gays?'

21 July 2001: Church property for sale in England
The Telegraph (London) reports that one of London's grandest churches has been split in two, with one half being sold off as a luxury, £10 million home. The newspaper does not consider the purchase of this dwelling to be a sound investment.

21 July 2001: Church property considered for sale in USA
The Globe (Boston) reports that as the real estate market has skyrocketed, so has the value of sites occupied by churches. In Boston itself, the value of real estate owned by religious denominations has doubled over the last five years, to $816 million, according to the city assessing office.

21 July 2001: At your service
Ruth Gledhill has devoted her weekly 'At your service' column to the installation of the Master of the Worshipful Company of Parish Clerks.

21 July 2001: Where are the young clergy?
The Christian Science Monitor has published an essay by Jane Lampman, which looks into the issue of recruiting new clergy.

21 July 2001: Sacred mysteries
Christopher Howse has devoted his column in The Telegraph to change ringing.

21 July 2001: New BBC Religion head writes Times' Credo column
This week's Credo column in The Times (London) is by Alan Bookbinder, the new head of religious broadcasting at the BBC whose appointment created a tempest in an inkpot last week because he is not himself religious.

21 July 2001: The Queen, the vicar, the bell-tower and the £800,000 black hole
The Independent retells the story of the bell-tower in Basildon.

21 July 2001: Sex is still Topic A
The Church Times reports that a parish in Manchester (England) and the Bishop of Middleton are arguing about sexuality. The bishops of that diocese have responded as a group, saying 'no'. That newspaper also reports 'Canadians told "This is war" on gay rights', though our reading of that article makes us wonder what the headline writer was thinking.

20 July 2001: North Carolina parish lawsuit ends in a mistrial
The Episcopal News Service (ECUSA) reports that a lawsuit filed by the Diocese of East Carolina and St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Morehead City, North Carolina, to recover property occupied by a group affiliated with the Anglican Mission in America ended in a mistrial July 14.

19 July 2001: Obituaries
Obituary in The Times (London) of the Ven Jesse Proctor, former Precentor of Coventry Cathedral. Obituary in The Times of the Very Revd Ivan Neill, Royal Chaplain.

18 July 2001: Fund for homeless mooted
The Sowetan (Johannesburg) reports that Anglican clergy in Tembisa, on the North Rand, who offered to accommodate homeless people who were evicted from Bredell, Kempton Park, last week, said yesterday they were already feeling the burden.

18 July 2001: Letters about too many bishops
The Letters page in The Times (London) carried this letter and this one about the 'too many bishops, not enough money' problem in the Church of England.

17 July 2001: New BBC head of religious broadcasting talks to the public
The Independent (London) published a column by Alan Bookbinder. It also published this column about him, and The Telegraph published this one by Victoria Combe. The Irish Times published a droll editorial about it.

17 July 2001: Peter Tatchell invited to pulpit
The Guardian reports that Peter Tatchell, the gay rights campaigner who was once expelled from an Easter service at Canterbury Cathedral, has been given a chance to address a congregation at a Leeds church next Sunday.

16 July 2001: Kenya primate sticks to his stand on President Moi
The East African Standard (Nairobi) reports that the Most Revd Dr David Gitari, Primate of the Anglican Church of Kenya, has said it is a pity that some people are still calling for the extension of the President's term in office. He said that Kenya's constitution is clear on the issue.

16 July 2001: Violence against clergy on increase in Malawi
The Chronicle (Lilongwe, Malawi) reports that government-sponsored violence against and denigration of clergy is on the increase. The article reports, among other things, on an incident in which government minister Dumbo Lemani was demeaning to the Rt Revd Joseph Tengatenga in a public ceremony.

16 July 2001: Auctioning Heaven's riches
The Times (London) reports on the very odd upcoming auction by the Panacea Society.

16 July 2001: Religious education in England
The Independent has published two articles about religious schools in England. '"Faith" schools scrutinised after Bradford riots' and 'Ministers must realise the implications of Bradford's divided schools'.

16 July 2001: Religious education in Zimbabwe
The African Church Information Service reports that the Zimbabwe government has announced that it will soon bar churches, aid agencies and civic organisations from carrying out voter education campaigns ahead of the presidential election scheduled for spring next year.


16 July 2001: Sydney Anglicans at odds with liberalising world church on gays, women
The Sydney Morning Herald reports on doctrinal differences between the Diocese of Sydney and other parts of the Anglican Communion.

16 July 2001: NZ telephone book leaves out Anglican Church
The Press (Christchurch, New Zealand) reports that the new telephone directory in Canterbury has left out essentially everyone associated with the Anglican Church. The Dean of Christchurch Cathedral has said 'It may be that this will bring a new monastic phase in our lives, one in which the vow of silence will reign. But I sincerely hope not.'

15 July 2001: Mormons pay £30m for prime British farmland
The Independent reports that 'The Mormon church has become the biggest foreign landowner in Britain, using the income from its vast holdings of prime farmland to spread its fundamentalist teaching in the Third World.'

15 July 2001: Rabbi warns of world campaign against Church of Scotland
The Anglican presence in Scotland is the Scottish Episcopal Church. Nevertheless, we find it interesting to note The Observer's report that an ultra-Orthodox rabbi has warned the Church of Scotland that a worldwide campaign could be launched against it after a row that has stalled building work on land owned by the Kirk at the Sea of Galilee.

14 July 2001: Sacred Mysteries
Christopher Howse devotes his column in The Telegraph to a nun and her vows.

14 July 2001: A home fit for a bishop
The Press (Christchurch, New Zealand) reports that the Rt Revd Derek Eaton, Bishop of Nelson, has moved into the new century by shifting from the historic Bishopdale residence to a new house.

13 July 2001: Reports on the Church of England Synod
The Church of England's General Synod has completed. The best overview is that in the Church Times, but they didn't think to include in this overview any links to their other coverage. The issue of bishops' membership in the House of Lords is covered in The Times, again in The Times, The Telegraph, again in The Telegraph, and in the Church Times. The process by which bishops are selected is covered in The Times, The Telegraph, and the Church Times. Planned changes to the Church of England's spending patterns were covered in The Times, again in The Times, in The Telegraph, in The Guardian, in the Church Times, and more in the Church Times. The issue of language used in the collects was noted in The Telegraph and the Church Times. Discussion of the size of the Synod itself was reported in The Telegraph and the Church Times. Covered only in the Church Times were the rural crisis, third world debt, world development, ethical investment, the Octavia Hill issue, and poverty and health.

13 July 2001: Reports on the Anglican Church of Canada Synod
The Anglican Church of Canada's General Synod has completed. The online coverage of this event by the ACC itself was spectacular, which is a good thing, because Canada's newspapers didn't pay a huge amount of attention. The homepage of ACC coverage is here, but if you just want to know what happened, you should look here. We often find that the DNS service for the Anglican Church of Canada web site is not working properly; should you be unable to get through to those links, try this link for the homepage and this link for the news coverage. Same web pages, different DNS servers.

13 July 2001: Parish property trial in North Carolina
The Diocese of East Carolina is filing daily updates on the courtroom proceedings relating to ownership of parish property of a parish that has withdrawn from the Episcopal Church.

13 July 2001: Selling the silver
The Guardian and the Church Times report that one of Britain's most bizarre, though wealthiest, charities is set to raise an estimated £750,000 by auctioning a hoard of antiques, jewellery and paintings donated by admirers over 70 years. Their goal is to get 24 Church of England bishops to open a box of sealed writings and so precipitate the Second Coming.

13 July 2001: Nigerian archbishop asks for fast and prayer
The Vanguard (Lagos) reports that the Most Revd Adebola Ademowo has called for a period of fasting and prayers for the current security situation in Lagos state.

13 July 2001: Islamic rulers of Afghanistan ban Internet in that country
The BBC reports that Afghanistan's ruling Taleban has banned the use of internet. The Pakistan-based Afghan Islamic Press (AIP) agency says the measure aims to block access in Afghanistan to anti-Islamic material. (We figure that means that the top-level domain .AF is now available.)

13 July 2001: Tanzanian reveller traditionalists unaware of threat of AIDS
The African Church Information Service reports that the millions of participants in Tanzania's traditional festival 'Mbina ye kisukuma ya kukaribisha mwaka' (in which 'there is great intimacy between the genders and even among the young people throughout the night of revelling') are largely unaware of the threat of AIDS.

13 July 2001: Accokeek is still there
The standoff at Accokeek, Maryland, in the Diocese of Washington, is still there. The priest at Christ Church has issued this letter to the congregation and the Bishop of Maryland (the next-door diocese) wrote this note. Yes, Bishop Ihloff's beard looks green on our screen, too, but it isn't. The Diocese of Washington maintains this list of related documents.

12 July 2001: BBC hires agnostic head of religion and ethics
The British Broadcasting Corporation has been searching for some time for a head of its religion and ethics department. The British press is abuzz with the story that the BBC has just hired 'an open-minded agnostic' into that position. See reports in the BBC itself, The Times, the Church Times, The Independent, and The Guardian. Opinions by Simon Jenkins in The Times, Joel Edwards in The Times, The Independent, Jason Deans in The Guardian, Dan Milmo in The Guardian, and yet another feature in The Guardian. This issue got almost as much coverage as the Pope's last trip; there's more in the Sunday Times, The Independent, and The Guardian.

11 July 2001: Bishops in government in Great Britain
The Telegraph has published an editorial that comments on last week's proposals to reduce the number of seats in the House of Lords that are given to bishops.

10 July 2001: Obituaries
Obituary of the Rt Revd Edward Roberts, former Bishop of Ely, in The Times. Other newspapers carried his obituary last week. Obituary of Fr Herbert McCabe in The Times. Obituary of Russell Saunders, stuntman, in The Guardian. Obituary of the Revd William Wendt, civil rights activist, in the Washington Post.

10 July 2001: Transgendered chaplain at odds with his diocese
The Times (London) reports that a hospital chaplain preparing to undergo a sex-change operation has been asked to resign by his bishop, who objects to him continuing to work as a woman.

10 July 2001: How much is that bishop in the window?
The one and only Andrew Brown, English freelance religion writer, has written a forceful column in The Independent. That newspaper introduces it by saying 'They're grand, they're dazzlingly dressed and they're high maintenance. But does anyone actually need them? Andrew Brown explains how bishops have become the biggest bee in the Church of England's bonnet.'

9 July 2001: Gaddafi blames Nigerian religious crisis on United States
The Guardian (Lagos, Nigeria) reports that Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has launched a fresh vitriolic attack against the United States, alleging that the recent religious crisis in Nigeria was engineered by America. As far as we know, the major religious crisis in Nigeria was caused by states in the north of that country adopting Islamic law even though they have many Christian residents.

8 July 2001: Congo witch hunt death toll nears 400
The New Vision (Kampala, Uganda) reports that three weeks of witch killings in Congo have claimed at least 392 lives and left 243 people displaced. The BBC reported a few days later that the Ugandan army has stepped in and arrested the killers, and learned about their motives.


8 July 2001: Church cannot afford rural work
The BBC reports that the Church of England may ask the government to pay it for its social work in rural areas, which would include 'the conversion of hundreds of rural churches into clubs, concert venues and post offices'. Includes RealVideo of a church in South Yorkshire that has opened a cybercafe.

7 July 2001: Sacred mysteries
The column in The Telegraph by Christopher Howse is this week devoted to the consecrations in Denver last month.

7 July 2001: Holy $%&@!
We weren't going to report either of these stories, but the juxtaposition was too much to pass up. Agence France Presse reports that Malaysian Muslim men can now seek a divorce just by sending a message to their spouses on their mobile phones. And The Times (London) today reported last month's story on a scheme to send church services to worshippers on their mobile phones.

7 July 2001: English bishops opposed to reduction in their governmental powers
The Times (London) reports that the Church of England General Synod attacked government plans to cut by more than a third the number of bishops in the House of Lords. However, the next day, the Sunday Times reported that the General Synod did vote to 'soften its opposition to the number of bishops who hold seats in the House of Lords being cut to make way for representatives of other religions.'

7 July 2001: God sends the rain and the sun equally
This week's Credo column in The Times (London) is by Bruce Dear, a London lawyer.

7 July 2001: At your service
Ruth Gledhill's weekly visit to someone else's church has today taken her to St Paul's Cathedral in London, for a ceremony commemorating the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. (We noted the event in our three-minute potted history of the Big Vicar a few letters ago.)

7 July 2001: Drumcree and the Church of Ireland
Patrick Comerford writes in The Irish Times that 'Onlookers at Drumcree might be forgiven for assuming a long and harmonious relationship between the Church of Ireland and the Orange Order. It is not so.' With the annual festivities at Drumcree coming up soon, there is a lot said about it, including 'Two tribes' by Patsy McGarry and 'Resting place of an ancient voyager' by Eileen Battersby, and 'Clergy appeal for calm at march' by Clare Murphy, all in The Irish Times. The British newspaper The Guardian reports 'Tension high over Orange parade'.

7 July 2001: Rock of Cashel as tourist attraction
The Sunday Times has written about the Rock of Cashel and its role in the founding of Christianity in Ireland.

6 July 2001: General Synod in the Church of England
The Church Times is carrying daily updates of the Church of England General Synod. This means we don't need to. Go read their coverage. We'll publish our wrap-up report a week or two after it's over.

6 July 2001: General Synod in the Anglican Church of Canada
The General Synod website includes a page with live webcasts. The ACC's web site has superb coverage of what is happening. This is, without a doubt, the best online coverage of an Anglican event that we have ever seen. We hope that someday ECUSA and the Church of England will be able to rise to this level of coverage. However, given how smart and aggressive the leadership of the Church of Nigeria is, we wouldn't be at all surprised if Nigeria got this right before the USA or England did.

6 July 2001: Obituaries
The death of Rt Revd Edward Roberts, former Bishop of Ely, is noted in The Independent and The Telegraph. And there is an obituary of W.D. Davies, New Testament scholar, in The Times and The Independent.

6 July 2001: +Sydney vs +Cantuar
The Church Times reports on increasing conflict between the new Archbishop of Sydney and the Archbishop of Canterbury over the issue of lay presidency.

6 July 2001: Provincial Synod of Kenya rejects resignation
The Nation (Nairobi) reports that Kenya's Anglican bishops' council has rejected its top lawyer's resignation. That newspaper reported his resignation the previous day.

5 July 2001: South African Church fight AIDS; Nigerian Muslim says it doesn't exist.
The Sowetan (Johannesburg) reports that Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane of South Africa, backed by the church's clergy in Africa and the pharmaceutical industry, yesterday launched an ambitious project to fight the AIDS pandemic. Meanwhile, as Nigeria fights the growth of Islamic law in that country, the P.M. News (Lagos) reports that a senior Muslim cleric has issued a public statement that AIDS does not exist.

5 July 2001: Interview with Richard Dawkins
The Independent has published an interview with Richard Dawkins, written by Thomas Sutcliffe. To us one of the more interesting parts of the article is that Professor Dawkins' chair at Oxford was endowed by Charles Simonyi, who is the originator of Microsoft Word. You will likely find other parts of it more interesting.

5 July 2001: Church in Australia dying along with its town
Australia's News Limited reports a story originally carried in The Courier-Mail (Queensland) about a small mining town losing its church and its priest because they can't afford to keep it any more. We noted, two days later in the Church Times, that the Diocese of Wakefield (England) is cutting 25 people from its rolls in an attempt to reduce its budget by £700,000.

5 July 2001: How the City found God
The Guardian has published a report by Mian Ridge on the success of the Alpha programme in London. It asserts that more than a million people have participated. The previous day it had reported that there would be a prime-time miniseries on Alpha on British television, hosted by David Frost. The Church Times also reported the announcement of this television show.

5 July 2001: Parish history
We've heard it said that Britain is a place where they think 100 km is a long distance, and North America is a place where they think 100 years is a long time. The Washington Post reports on a book that records the 150-year history of a parish church in Maryland, near Washington DC. It sounds delightful, and we may well order a copy.

4 July 2001: Washington Times on women as priests
The Washington Times has published a report, part of a larger series on Protestant denominations, on women as priests.

3 July 2001: More on the bell tower at Basildon
The Times reports that the priest who built a £500,000 millennium church bell tower in Basildon, Essex, without paying for it, said he believed that someone else had agreed to pay for it.

3 July 2001: Episcopal turf war
The 9 July issue of Time magazine reports that 'Conservative rebels have drawn archbishops from Africa and Asia into a suddenly less civil discourse'.

2 July 2001: Using a church for military target practice?
The Telegraph reports that an ancient church in the middle of British Army firing ranges on Salisbury Plain that has only one service a year is expected to close after having been open for 700 years.


1 July 2001: English clergy to receive pay rise of £1,000 a year
The Telegraph reports that Church of England clergy are in line for a significant pay rise after a top-level review concluded that their stipends are too low.

1 July 2001: AMiB?
The Sunday Times reports that missionaries from South America and Africa are heading to Britain to save souls in a reversal of traditional roles. We assume that they aren't going to consecrate any bishops. For some reason this reminds us that the British Government has just announced the appointment of a new Suffragan Bishop of Sherborne.

1 July 2001: No C of E investment in Provident Financial
The Sunday Telegraph notes that the Church of England is divesting Provident. If you have followed this story, here is its resolution. If you have not, please pay no attention.


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