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Archbishop of Canterbury Entangled in Robinson Case

Archbishop of Canterbury Entangled in Robinson Case

Information has been made public that seems quite clearly to show that the Archbishop of Canterbury has been entangled in the public disputes over the cancellation of the ordination of former Church of England Ordinand, Calvin Robinson.

In an article about high-profile departures from the Church of England in recent weeks, (Martyn Percy and Calvin Robinson), Welby was asked, “How might the Church hope to reconcile its detractors when they are so publicly severing ties with it?”

According to Church Times, the Archbishop responded, “First of all, people are perfectly entitled to leave.”  Then when asked about Robinson, the Archbishop was quoted as saying, “I haven’t been involved at all in that case.”

This seems problematic as the text of emails, obtained by Robinson via a Subject Access Request, show that Bishop Emma Ineson [Bishop to the Archbishops] wrote to the Bishop of Edmonton on 7 December 2021, “I will bring these to ++Justin’s attention but do let me know if you have any further thoughts or information in the meantime.”  The Bishop of London was copied on the correspondence.

Four days earlier on 3 December 2021, the Bishop of Edmonton had written to Bishop Ineson (with a copy to the Bishop of London), “In a conversation last night, ++Justin asked for some examples Calvin Robinson’s tweets.”

The emails seem to clearly demonstrate the Archbishop’s interest in what was going on with Calvin Robinson and that he was being briefed on updates by his subordinate bishops about the situation.

The email from the Bishop of Edmonton to Bishop Ineson and the Bishop of London on 3 December goes on to say, “Calvin is a Diocese of London ordinand, now released.”  Robinson had been released from Edmonton where he had started his training to the Bishop of Fulham because he changed his mind about the ordination of women whilst in seminary.  The Bishop of Fulham is an official Provincial Episcopal Visitor [Flying Bishop] in Canterbury Province.   His remit is to look after traditionalist Anglo-Catholic clergy and congregations who do not accept the ministry of women clergy.

Politician and media personality, Laurence Fox, has taken up Robinson’s cause and started a petition calling on Archbishop Welby and the Bishop of London to resign.

The petition reads in part, “We therefore invite them to save their souls by resigning their posts in favour of BAME Anglicans. Welby and Mullally would be showing the ultimate form of moral leadership, giving up their own careers to resolve what they attest to be a grim historical injustice.”