“The clergy oaths of allegiance & canonical obedience are…problematic in a society where we are adult citizens, not subjects, and collaborative ministers, not slaves. Why not oaths of loyalty, fidelity & accountability to those holding oversight?”
Michael Sadgrove, Dean Emeritus of Durham
As regular readers will be aware, Trevor Cooper of the Historic Religious Buildings Alliance and Frank, as members of the Places of Worship Forum, convened by Historic England, have long been arguing for clarification of the law on the powers of civil parish and town councils to grant aid local places of worship. The nub of the problem has been that s 8(1)(i) Local Government Act 1894 prohibits such financial support and that – unlike other aspects of that Act – there has been no subsequent legislation that has decisively overridden the prohibition. The full arguments for and against that proposition are here.
It now appears that the issue is to be resolved, at least so far as England is concerned. Continue reading