Diary: Archbishop's sermon may cost him a place in The Sun

 

I hear from someone in a position to know that Lambeth Palace is not pleased with the unusual “Sunday Service” delivered by the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, in a column in The Sun on Sunday.

Normally, the Church of England is glad to get its message to as wide an audience as it can, and the newspaper's circulation is way bigger than the biggest congregation that ever packed York Cathedral. And the Archbishop will make no material gain from the column, because all money received is pledged to go straight to charity.

What has not gone down well, apparently, is the peculiar mix of faith and product placement. "Ours is a God of second opportunities," the Archbishop wrote. "With that in mind, live in hope, free from fear, and embrace every day God puts before you in confidence. And if you can buy The Sun seven days a week, even better!"

Dr Sentamu was out of reach on retreat, so until he emerges tomorrow, it is not certain whether this Sun column will be followed by others. The offer is open to him if he wants to write another, but with his chances of ever becoming Archbishop of Canterbury heading the way of the News of the World he might be well advised to say no.

So that explains the long faces...

On the very morning that it was revealed at the Leveson Inquiry that the Metropolitan Police loaned one of its retired horses to The Sun's former editor Rebekah Brooks, the main headline on that newspaper was: "Taking us for a ride."

Unhealthy support for Lansley

There was a notable shortage of cabinet support for Andrew Lansley, the Health Secretary, as he stood up in the Commons yet again yesterday to defend his tattered health-reform bill. The most senior Tory on the benches beside him was Sir George Young, the Leader of the Commons. "If it had happened to one of ours," a former Labour minister remarked, "it would have been either a sign they are hanging him out to dry or he is in the departure lounge – or they can't get their act together."

Tories not party to revealing findings

The Conservative hierarchy say they have completed their internal investigation into Aidan Burley, the MP who was photographed at a Nazi-themed stag party, but are not going to tell us their conclusions just yet. "It would be inappropriate to release the report's findings while French police are conducting their own investigation," a spokesman said.

H'Angus fires 'cabinet'

When people are asked in local referendums whether they want a directly elected mayor, they usually say no. An exception was the town of Hartlepool, where they voted to have a mayor, then elected a monkey. Actually, it was a man in a monkey outfit, who acted as the Hartlepool FC mascot and got himself on the ballot paper as H'Angus the Monkey.

What started as a joke has become serious. Bereft of his monkey suit, Stuart Drummond is still Mayor of Hartlepool, the first elected mayor to win a third full term, and this week he has sacked six Labour councillors from the "cabinet" that runs the local council because they failed to vote for a plan to privatise the council's IT services. It's a far cry from the days when he entertained Hartlepool FC supporters by cavorting with a blow-up doll.

* Congratulations to Today presenter Jim Naughtie for getting through the entire programme yesterday without once mispronouncing his guest, the Culture Secretary, Jeremy Hunt.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

HR Manager - London - £40,000 + bonus

£32000 - £40000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: HR Manager (Generalist) -Old...

Talent Manager / HR Manager - central London - £50,000

£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Talent / Learning & Development Mana...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week