Comments: Bishop of London's well-earned sabbatical

The Times have changed...

Posted by Göran Koch-Swahne at Monday, 23 January 2006 at 7:52pm GMT

Oh for goodness sake. Let the Bishop enjoy his sabbatical leave.

The pity is that he has not previously taken a sabbatical leave, and that this one is so brief.

I hope that he will relax and enjoy every minute!

Posted by The Revd. J. Michael Povey at Monday, 23 January 2006 at 11:07pm GMT

It seems mean spirited of people to criticise the Bishop of London. He is generous to his senior staff and sends them regularly on sabbatical and reading breaks. Also he is good at taking 5-6 week reading breaks roughly every 3 years, and people benefit from him coming back fresh. He cannot be expected to use his long summer holidays for studying, as he has a family with whom to be a husband and father and just relax. I guess Lent must be a good time for him to escape as there are not too many meetings, and he was away last Lent on a similar cruise for a fortnight in the Indian Ocean. People should give him a break (literally) and be thankful for his gifts.

Posted by Neil at Monday, 23 January 2006 at 11:10pm GMT

What a bizarre reaction by the Amicus official! Wearing my trade union activist and unemployed HRM lecturer hats, I would have thought that this would be a marvellous chance to argue for the extension of such sabbaticals to all clergy.

The mean-spirited reaction of the Murdoch press is rather less surprising.

Posted by Alan Harrison at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 9:28am GMT

You need to recognise that this is a non-story, generated and fuelled by the Sunday Times journalist Christopher Morgan, who has a thing about Swan Hellenic (he often runs "bishops do jollies" stories), and presumably has an axe to grind (perhaps he's never been asked to do a lecture tour). Nobody is complaining about Richard Chartres' sabbatical apart from Morgan. And Amicus' role in all this is curious, since decent employment conditions for the clergy presumably include sabbaticals, which is what the London policy on CME recommends. So they should be arguing in favour of what +Richard is doing.

And we do have six bishops in London, so the absence of the diocesan on sabbatical can be perfectly adequately covered.

Morgan needs to get a life.

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 9:57am GMT

I hope the beer is cold and the sun shines ....

Posted by Jeremy Timm at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 10:07am GMT

So Easter does not count for much any longer in the diocese of London?

Will any cleric in that diocese now be able to go on a luxury cruise over Holy Week and Easter?

Or is it the case that some clerics are more equal than others...

Posted by Martyn Sandford at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 2:29pm GMT

Let the poor bishop have some time off!

Posted by Kurt at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 3:09pm GMT

It is amazing to find so much mean-spiritedness on reasserter blogs by contributors who take a literalist view of Holy Scripture. The Bible as law book makes them very judgmental rather than leaving judgment to God. Now the good Bishop of London has joined the ranks of those who have become the 'poster' boys of abuse: ECUSA's PB, the Bishops of California and Florida.

Posted by John Henry at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 6:51pm GMT

Well, I know that clergy do take sabbaticals over Easter, and the cruise is simply reflecting the fact that he may have something interesting to say.

Talk about a storm in a teacup.

Posted by Merseymike at Tuesday, 24 January 2006 at 7:14pm GMT

The Murdoch press seem to have a 'thing' about any kind of sabbatical or study leave. Here in Australia it's not the bishops (I don't think the local Murdoch papers would know a bishop if they tripped over him) - it's the judges.

Posted by Rodney at Thursday, 26 January 2006 at 12:46am GMT

John Henry wrote "It is amazing to find so much mean-spiritedness on reasserter blogs"

Dear John, Realy ? Where ? I have searched in vain through the main orthodox Christian sites for negative comments.. As far as I'm concerned the sabbatical concept is brilliant, and I've no criticism of +Richard whatever !

Posted by Dave at Thursday, 26 January 2006 at 6:04pm GMT

Dave, you might read the comments on the same news release on the Titus 1:9 Blog ("How dare a bishop absent himself from his diocese during Holy Week!" would be considered a rather mild-mannered response).

Posted by John Henry at Thursday, 26 January 2006 at 7:47pm GMT

Dear John Henry, OK Read them. Some people were rather critical! In the original article I also found this quote from Andrew de Berry, of the clergy section of the trade union Amicus, who said the bishop had “lost the plot” and added: “What is he doing leaving the diocese at the most important time of the year? This is about the most discouraging thing he could have done for his clergy.” But I'm not sure Mr de Berry is a "reasserter" who "takes a literalist view of Holy Scripture".. they're not usually the one's found in Amicus ?

Posted by Dave at Sunday, 29 January 2006 at 11:45pm GMT

the Bishop of London tells people that this will be his first sabbatical in over 30 years...what he truthfully should have said is that this is at least his third extended period away (apart from holidays) since becoming a bishop and that this is a jolly GOOD thing.

Posted by Neil at Thursday, 2 February 2006 at 5:49pm GMT
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