This week in Parliament the Bishop of Rochester and the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Andrew Selous, spoke during debates on the Government’s Coronavirus Bill. The Government accepted an amendment to the Bill to enable General Synod elections to be postponed.
The Bishop of Rochester also asked a question about Government discussions with charities on the coronavirus response.
Government ministers answered written questions on Falun Gong in China, visas for ministers of religion, and nutrition, from respectively the Bishops of Carlisle, Southwark and St Albans.
Andrew Selous MP, answered written questions from MPs on cashless giving to churches, and maintenance of graveyards.
Parliament rose for the Easter recess, to return on April 21st. Continue reading “Week in Westminster, 23rd-26th March 2020”
On 25th March 2020 the House of Lords passed the Government’s emergency Coronavirus Bill. It then rose for the Easter recess. The Lord Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, praised the spirit of collaboration in which all sides had worked to get the Bill through.
Continue reading “Coronavirus Bill: Bishop of Rochester praises spirit of collaboration in passing law”
On 25th March 2020 the Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received a written answer to a question on nutrition:
Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about nutritional values”
On 24th March 2020 Lord Dannatt asked the Government “what plans they have to provide additional support to charities working with people who are self-isolating as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic”. The Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, asked a follow up question:
The Lord Bishop of Rochester: My Lords, the noble Baroness has indicated that conversations are going on between the Government and the sector. I wonder whether she could give us more detail on that and on whether new networks are being put in place in the present circumstances, especially to link not just with the larger charities but with the wider sector, particularly those on the ground.
Continue reading “Bishop of Rochester asks Government about discussions with charities on coronavirus response”
On 24th March 2020 the House of Lords debated the emergency legislation from the Government to deal with the Coronavirus pandemic. The Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, spoke in the debate, highlighting issues to do with church closures, funerals, and care of the vulnerable, including the homeless, and those in prison or immigration detention:
The Lord Bishop of Rochester: My Lords, in these days I have been reflecting on the words of the Hebrew psalmist who, at the time of his people’s exile, articulated the question:
“How can we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?”
In many ways we are entering into a strange land, and indeed in some ways a land of exile: a land in which we are exiled from many of our normal patterns of living, in which people of faith are not able to attend their places of worship and in which many people find themselves having to live life in entirely new ways.
Continue reading “Coronavirus Bill: Bishop of Rochester responds on church closures and care for vulnerable”
On 24th March 2020 the Second Church Estate Commissioner, Andrew Selous MP, answered a written question from Aaron Bell MP, on graveyard maintenance:
Continue reading “Church Commissioners’ written answer: graveyard maintenance”