Church: Slimmed-down Synod on the cards

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The Independent Online
Proposals to cut the size of the General Synod of the Church of England by a third, and to radically overhaul the way in which the church's parliament works, were published yesterday. A report, Synodical Government in the Church of England: A Review, published by Church House, is the culmination of a four-year review chaired by Lord Bridge of Harwich. It recommends that the number of suffragan bishops elected to the House of Bishops should be reduced from nine to six and that the maximum size of the General Synod be reduced from 575 to 390.

The report's suggestions for the style and procedure of the General Synod, which have existed in their present form since 1970, include more imaginative use of prayer and quiet reflection and allowing the Synod to determine the frequency of its own meetings.

Synodical Government in the Church of England: A Review, pounds 5.95 from Church House Bookshop, 31 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BN. Tel: 0171 340 0276.

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