Counsel On New Bishop
Friday October 17, 2008
NEWCASTLE Anglican Bishop Brian Farran says he has the name of the person he wants to become his new assistant bishop but he will wait until November before making a final decision.Bishop Farran has been widely tipped to appoint a woman to the post. If so, she would be one of only three female Anglican bishops in the country.The church decided earlier this year to allow the consecration of women. Former Newcastle Assistant Bishop Graeme Rutherford retired in July.Dr Farran is expected to tell the annual Synod, which starts today, that he will seek the concurrence of the Diocesan Council at its November meeting before making a decision."Clearly this is beyond just a single bishop," he said."I will therefore seek the concurrence of the November meeting of the Diocesan Council to appoint an assistant bishop and I shall be bringing a name to that meeting."The annual meeting of representatives from 64 parishes from Woy Woy to Murrurundi will be held at Newcastle City Hall today and tomorrow.Topics on the Synod's agenda include homelessness in the Hunter, the inequalities between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians and the environment.Dr Farran said the problem of homelessness in Newcastle was growing each year."The problem was highlighted during last year's June long weekend storms," he said."Each week Samaritans welfare centres report seeing more families fleeing domestic violence, but unable to find alternate accommodation."Our parishes come across people living permanently in caravan parks, sometimes in very substandard accommodation, but there is no other alternative they can afford."He said he would invite the Samaritans to suggest initiatives to be taken to the Government.