Church Commissioners Written Answer: thefts from churches

On 5th November 2019, Dame Caroline Spelman, the Second Church Estates Commissioner, answered a written question from Gregory Campbell MP, about trends in thefts from churches:

Gregory Campbell (DUP): 4943 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of major property thefts from Churches in the last five years.

Dame Caroline Spelman: The Church of England does not hold data on thefts centrally, but it is kept by local police forces, Historic England and the insurance industry.

The most prominent form of property theft from churches is that of metal (mainly lead from roofs) and of historic building materials such as flagstones. These are items with a high resale value and which, once removed, can be difficult to identify as coming from a particular place.

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Church Commissioner Questions: Tributes, climate change, archbishops, reconciliation, telecommunications, thefts, women in prison, marriage, digital evangelism

On 31st October 2019 Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman answered questions from MPs for the last time as Second Church Estates Commissioner. Tributes were paid to her, and questions were answered on climate change, archbishops, reconciliation, telecommunications, thefts, women in prison, marriage, and digital evangelism. This was also the same day that the Speaker and his Chaplain were due to retire. A full transcript follows:

Church Commissioners

The right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, was asked—

Climate Change: Investment in Companies

Michael Tomlinson (Mid Dorset and North Poole) (Con): What progress the Church of England has made on holding the companies in which it invests to account on climate change. [900272]

The Second Church Estates Commissioner (Dame Caroline Spelman): Since this is my last set of oral questions, I would like to record my heartfelt thanks to my small team of staff, and especially my constituency secretary, who has faithfully served me for 20 out of 22 years. We often forget that our staff are on the frontline of much of the abuse that we receive, and I want to record my admiration for their fortitude. I also thank the amazing staff I have had to support me in this role, particularly Simon Stanley at Church House.

In tribute, Mr Speaker, I thank you for your kindness and courtesy—unfailingly so, and especially at times of personal duress. I single out your inspired choice of Speaker’s Chaplain, who has enriched the spiritual life of this place—but more of that later.

The Church of England Pensions Board has tabled a shareholder resolution ahead of the annual general meeting of BHP Billiton, the world’s largest mining company, on 7 November this month. It asks BHP to suspend its membership of trade associations that are not lobbying in line with the climate change agreement. This is just the latest example of the Church Commissioners using their shareholder position to change company policy in line with the climate change agreement.

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Church Commissioners written answers: theology and practice

spelman170119On 3rd September 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered six written questions from Sir John Hayes MP, on the 2008 Jerusalem Statement, the Global Anglican Future Conference, the 39 Articles,  the proportion of Church employees who are practising Christians, and biblical teaching on sex and gender in relation to transgender issues:

Sir John Hayes: (i) 281583 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Archbishop of Canterbury will pledge his commitment to the Jerusalem Statement of 2008. Continue reading “Church Commissioners written answers: theology and practice”

Church Commissioner Questions: social media, telecommunications masts in parishes, FCO support for persecuted Christians, festivals in cathedrals, funding for Keighley constituency

On 25th July 2019 MPs asked questions of Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, the Second Church Estates Commissioner. Questions were asked about social media, telecommunications masts in parishes, FCO support for persecuted Christians, festivals in cathedrals, and funding to the Keighley constituency:

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Church Commissioners written answers: serious youth violence

spelman170119On 25th July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered two written questions, from Vicky Foxcroft MP, regarding serious youth violence:

Vicky Foxcroft (Lab):

(i) 279089 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps the Church of England plans to take to implement the decision taken at the General Synod in July 2019 in relation to the motion on Tackling Serious Youth Violence.

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Church Commissioners written answer: Churches Trust four-year Grant Programme

spelman170119eOn 25th July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from Gregory Campbell MP regarding the Churches Trust Grant Programme:

Gregory Campbell (DUP): 280172 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps are being taken to promote the new four year Grant Programme through the Churches Trust. Continue reading “Church Commissioners written answer: Churches Trust four-year Grant Programme”

Church Commissioners written answer: Church action on problem gambling

spelman170119eOn 22nd July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question, from Gregory Campbell MP, regarding problem gambling:

Gregory Campbell (DUP): 278399 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps the Church of England is taking to tackle problem gambling.

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Church Commissioners written answer: Bishop George Bell

spelman170119cOn 18th July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from Rt Hon Frank Field MP, regarding Bishop George Bell:

Frank Field (Ind): 275686 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, pursuant to the Answer of 12 March 2019 to Question 227049 on George Bell, whether the £29,800 represents the full payment for all costs incurred by the church in its initial judgement on Bishop George Bell; and what proportion of that sum was used for costs for (a) lawyers and (b) damages. Continue reading “Church Commissioners written answer: Bishop George Bell”

Church Commissioners written answer: Equality legislation

spelman170119dOn 18th July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from Tonia Antoniazzi MP, regarding equality legislation:

Tonia Antoniazzi (Lab): 277265 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what discussions the (a) Church of England and (b) Church in Wales have had with (i) other religious and faith bodies, (ii) the Government and (iii) the Equality and Human Rights Commission on the exemption of those bodies from equality legislation for appointments and provision of services. Continue reading “Church Commissioners written answer: Equality legislation”

Church Commissioners written answers: Thefts from churches

spelman170119On 18th July 2019 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered three written questions from Sir Oliver Heald MP about theft of church materials:

Sir Oliver Heald (North East Hertfordshire): (i) 277093 To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, pursuant to Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 269594 on Churches, which dioceses keep records of (a) thefts and (b) attempted thefts of metal. Continue reading “Church Commissioners written answers: Thefts from churches”