Church of England General Synod Members Express “Lack of Confidence” in Shared Conversations

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Anglican Mainstream have the news about the failure of the Shared Conversations process to deliver…

[Editor’s note]: This short statement has just been released by a group of clergy and laity who, as members of General Synod, were present in the context in which the Shared Conversations took place. Some of the group did not take part in the Conversations on principle, having already decided that the process was flawed; the majority of those on the list did take part.

It must be assumed that there were others who shared similar serious reservations about the Conversations having taken part, but who have not for whatever reason signed the list. Among them is Revd Dr Ian Paul, a member of Archbishop’s Council, who has written consistently to explain and defend the church’s historic teaching, and has strongly criticised the Conversations process here.

If a significant section of the Church’s governing body are prepared to publicly dissent in this way, then serious questions remain about the viability of maintaining surface unity in the church while allowing contradictory doctrinal positions.


“We, the undersigned members of the General Synod, wish to express our lack of confidence in the process of the Shared Conversations.  Whatever their stated purposes, the outcome has not led to a greater confidence that the Church will be guided by the authoritative voice of the Scriptures, and its decisive shaping of traditional Anglican teaching, in any forthcoming discussions.”

Rosemary Lyon – Blackburn
Stephen Boyall – Blackburn
Kathy Playle – Chelmsford
Mary Durlacher – Chelmsford
David Banting – Chelmsford
Debbie Woods – Chester
Jeremy Harris – Chester
Lorna Ashworth – Chichester
Andrea Minichiello Williams – Chichester
Rachel Bell – Derby
Giles Williams – Europe
Helen Lamb – Ely
William Belcher – Gloucester
Chik Kaw Tan – Lichfield
Shaun Morris – Lichfield
Chris Gill – Lichfield
Debbie Buggs – London
Sarah Finch – London
Clive Scowen – London
Charlie Skrine -London
Margaret Parrett – Manchester
Caroline Herbert – Norwich
Graham Caskie – Oxford
Andrew Bell – Oxford
Andrew Presland – Peterborough
Mark Lucas – Peterborough
Ian Dobbie – Rochester
Angus MacLeay – Rochester
Jane Patterson -Sheffield
Brian Wilson – Southwark
Susie Leafe – Truro
Chris Fry – Winchester

I note that a number of the signatories are council members of the Evangelical Group on General Synod

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  1. MichaelA

    I wonder how much good this is going to do?

    With the attempt to call another Primates Meeting later this year, it seems more and more clear that the leadership of the CofE simply will not be deflected from their course. They intend to bring in same-sex blessings and endorsement of openly gay clergy and bishops, and dissent will not stop them. They will listen politely of course, indeed they think it is very healthy that people express their dissent and get it out of their system, and then conform.

    The only thing I can see that will make a difference in England is the planting of many new congregations which are Anglican, but independent of the Church of England. This work has gone on sporadically in the past but seems to have gone quiet.

    1. Layreader

      If Justin Welby really wants to know what the membership of the C of E thinks, perhaps he should call a referendum, rather than let himself continue to be driven by small minorities. It worked for David Cameron, didn’t it?


      So the influence of ‘Global South’, which has taken a very firm position on these now very contentious issues, is simply being ignored by those steering the Barque up in Canterbury…? I fear the long term consequences for the Anglican church.

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