On 20th June 2019 MPs asked questions of Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, the Second Church Estates Commissioner. Questions were asked about serious youth violence, clergy recruitment in London, the contribution of cathedrals to the local economy, employee pay gap, responsible investments, mobile phone masts, and persecution of Christians:
The right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, was asked—
Serious Youth Violence
Daniel Kawczynski (Shrewsbury and Atcham) (Con) 1. What steps the Church of England is taking to help tackle serious youth violence; and if she will make a statement. 
Vicky Foxcroft (Lewisham, Deptford) (Lab) 7. What steps the Church of England is taking to help tackle serious youth violence; and if she will make a statement. 
The Second Church Estates Commissioner (Dame Caroline Spelman): The Church was represented at the knife crime summit organised by the Prime Minister at No. 10 earlier this year, and the General Synod will be debating this subject at its session next month. There is no question but that this issue is of the utmost seriousness, as too many young lives are being lost.
On 6th June 2019 the House of Lords debated and approved the Church Representation and Ministers Measure. The Bishop of Leeds, Rt Revd Nick Baines, introduced the Measure:
Moved by The Lord Bishop of Leeds, That this House do direct that, in accordance with the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919, the Church Representation and Ministers Measure be presented to Her Majesty for the Royal Assent.
The Lord Bishop of Leeds: My Lords, it was 100 years ago this week that your Lordships’ House gave a Second Reading to the National Assembly of the Church of England (Powers) Bill. Speaking in support of the Bill, Lord Parmoor said:
“If this Bill is passed, for the first time the laity of the Church will have a recognised and substantive position in the corporate expression of church life … The very object of the Bill is to give an effective part to a large number of Church men, earnest and eager to do their best for the Church and who cannot have an effective influence at the present time. That is why I, as a layman, have laboured for this Bill”.—[Official Report, 3/6/1919; cols. 1028-29.]
The Bill was passed and became the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919. It devolved legislative power to the Church Assembly, which has since become the General Synod. It is pursuant to Section 4 of the 1919 Act that this Motion is before the House today.
On Wednesday 28th November 2018 Lord Berkeley asked Her Majesty’s Government “what assessment they have made of the case for the disestablishment of the Church of England.” Several Members asked follow-up questions, including the Bishop of Worcester, Rt Revd John Inge, and a transcript of the exchanges is below:
Church of England: Disestablishment
Lord Berkeley: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for the disestablishment of the Church of England.
On 9th October 2017 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a question from Mark Hendrick MP about the 500th anniversary of the start of the Reformation in Europe.
Mr Mark Hendrick(Preston): To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what events and activities the Diocese of Blackburn is undertaking to mark the Quincentenary of the nailing of Ninety-five Theses by Martin Luther on the door of All Saints’ Church, Wittenberg, on 31 October 1517.
Dame Caroline Spelman: Church of England dioceses are marking the 500th Anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation in Europe and parishes are being encourage to commemorate the anniversary in a variety of ways. For example in my own parish of Knowle, a sermon series will be held.
On the 20th February 2017 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from Labour MP Jon Trickett about the issuing of security passes to non-staff members.
Jon Trickett: To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, pursuant to the Answer of 3 February 2017 to Question 62530, what the number of security passes issued by the Church Commissioners to people not employed by the Church Commissioners is; what business needs suffice for such a security pass to be granted; and what the number of passes issued to people who work for private companies which have currently or previously been awarded government contracts or which are bidding for such contracts is. Continue reading “Church Commissioners’ answers: Security”
On 15th June 2016 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from SNP MP Deidre Brock, on deprived communities.
Deidre Brock (Edinburgh North and Leith): To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, if the Church of England will make an assessment of the effect of austerity on communities in the most deprived areas as measured by the English Indices of Deprivation 2015 .
Mrs Caroline Spelman: The Church Commissioners have no plans to undertake such an assessment. Through its network of parishes and dioceses the Church of England is present in all the communities of England. The clergy and people of the Church of England are well placed to hear, articulate and respond to the needs and concerns of local communities. This plays an important role in informing the public engagement of the Church on social policy matters especially at local level.
On 23rd February 2016 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from David Hanson MP about pay for male and female employees of the National Church Institutions.
Mr David Hanson (Delyn): To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what the average hourly earnings for their (a) female and (b) male (i) full-time and (ii) part-time employees was in each of the last five years.
Mrs Caroline Spelman: The following information relates to employees of the Church of England’s National Church Institutions (NCIs). Senior salaries, gender and race information are published each year in the annual reports of Archbishops’ Council, Pensions Board and Church Commissioners. Continue reading “Church Commissioners – levels of pay”