The #ChurchofEngland has been purposefully dithering for the best part of a year over its reaction to the second batch of “information” about #BishopGeorgeBell, and has throughout withheld with great determination any hint of what that information may be.
Several months were spent finding former @SuperintendentRayGalloway to assess whatever it was that the church had received and to make such further enquiries as he saw fit. His name, too, was closely guarded, (no one knows why) but found out by private enterprise and first published in this column on 29th May 2018.
After quite some time, but exactly when is another church secret, Galloway presented his report. It was then announced that his assessment was itself to be assessed by #TimBriden, a barrister who specialises in church law and is”Diocesan Chancellor and Vicat-General of the Province of Canterbury.”
Briden’s assessment has been delayed (again, no one knows why) and the latest news from the church is that the decision whether or not to publish it will be made, probably this month or in a February, by an individual with the wonderfully appropriate designation of, wait for it, the Deciding Officer. I do not yet know whether this is Mr Briden wearing another hat, or whether the Deciding Officer represents yet another source of delay on top of Galloway and Briden.
It will be a nice matter of judgement whether to publish before or after the forthcoming #Synod (20-23 February). To publish before the Synod risks giving ammunition to unco-operative clergy and laity. To delay would allow those same divisive elements to complain that they had been denied the opportunity to discuss the report.
We can only wait and see.
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