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Church Of England Could Cut Number Of Bishops Amid Funding Crisis

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The Church of England is to debate several money-saving measures to cope with the recession, falling investment returns and a £352m pension deficit.

At this weekend's General Synod, the governing body for the Church of England, clergy and laity will look at proposals such as trimming the number of bishops and other senior clergy and encouraging churchgoers to donate up to 10% of their earnings.

A paper prepared by the diocese of Bradford noted that despite a "large decline" in church membership and full-time paid clergy, there had been no serious consideration given to the need to reduce the number of senior posts and the structures around them.

In 2008 the church commissioners, who manage investments for the Church of England, spent £7.3m maintaining houses for diocesan bishops and £14.5m in grants for bishops' support staff, offices and working costs. This year the church announced that the value of its investment portfolio fell to £4.4bn last year, from £5.7bn in 2007.

Another solution is to encourage congregations to be more generous with their money. Flocks provide £600m a year, more than half of the total cost of funding the Church of England, according to the national stewardship committee. If churchgoers contributed 5% of their income, an extra £300m a year would be generated for community projects, youth workers and support for church work.

The report recommends that churchgoers give an additional 5% of their net income to "other charities and mission organisations". It suggests that priests preach on the value of generosity, telling churchgoers how their donations support ministry and talking to them about "wider money and lifestyle issues".

The Rt Rev John Packer, the Bishop of Ripon and Leeds, wrote a foreword to the report. "A time of recession is also a time of opportunity. We need to reflect on how we can support those in our own society and throughout the world who have been savagely damaged by the credit crunch," he said.

And if wages decline the C of E think congregations will get more generous?

Perhaps they should turn into a bank? They could call themselves the Bank of England, oops that name's been taken by another bunch of charlatans hasn't it.

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Poverty is suposed to be a good thing for christians isnt it?. All those vickars living in bloody mansions looking down thair noses at everyone els. Are you low church or high church?. God can create the universe but he just cant handle money.

edited due to bad language in link

Edited by charliemouse
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It suggests that priests preach on the value of generosity, telling churchgoers about "wider money and lifestyle issues"

Dire straits indeed.

What happens if the Church goes bankrupt? Does the receiver try to find a buyer?

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Guest BoomBoomCrash
Was at a christening last weekend, at the end of the ceremony before we left the vicar asked for donations and mentioned the church was running at a loss of £700 per week!

Sounds like a failed business to me, he'd better shut up shop.

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Refresh my memory again, putting it simply this is the outfit started by a serial-killer monarch just to get a divorce; & it's one of the (if not the) biggest landowners in Britain?

Do they have a document saying 'Approved by God'?

Thought not.

So it should logically be scrapped well before Scotland?

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Refresh my memory again, putting it simply this is the outfit started by a serial-killer monarch just to get a divorce

There was a nice billboard campaign for the Church in the US.

The headline ran: 'At The Church Started By A Man Who Beheaded His Wives, Forgiveness Goes Without Saying'

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