Letter: Vicar's income

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The Independent Culture
Sir: The pastoral reorganisation in the Gaulby group of parishes ("Vicar loses fight to keep his flock", 18 March) will not affect the Rev Ashley Cheesman's personal income at all. The quote from Roger Lyons, general secretary of the Manufacturing, Science and Finance Union that "his new parish will not provide sufficient income for a man with a wife and two children" is misleading.

The income of Anglican clergy is a stipend. Fees for baptisms, weddings and funerals are either assigned direct to the diocese, or a record is kept of such fees to report to the diocese and the stipend is adjusted accordingly through the Church Commissioners. This avoids the situation where some clergy would be paid more than others because they were in an area that has a high number of weddings, for example.

Emotional quotes such as using "an administrative measure effectively to starve him out", are inaccurate and unfair.

SUE KYRIAKOU

Bishop's Press Officer

Diocese of Leicester

Burton on Trent,

Staffordshire

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