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A vicars' pension scheme could be facing a precarious future unless church chiefs face up to a potentially massive deficit. John Ralfe, an independent pension expert, claimed this week that the pension scheme for some 16,400 Church of England clergy is "the riskiest in the country in terms of asset-type".

Stepping down: Rowan Williams will end a turbulent decade when he leaves in December

Williams resigns: but who'll accept the poisoned chalice?

The Primate's departure comes at a critical moment in the Church of England's history

Leading article: A church leader buffeted by the storms of his age

History may well judge Dr Williams more kindly than either his country or some of his fellow clerics

Sentamu (l) could replace Rowan Williams as Archbishop of Canterbury

Sentamu favourite to succeed Rowan Williams in Canterbury

With Rowan Williams set to step down as Archbishop of Canterbury after ten years in the job, attention is already turning to who might replace him as head of the 77 million-strong Anglican Communion – with Dr John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York the early favourite.

Archbishop of York, DR John Sentamu warns gay marriages may need the approval of the Church of England

Church approval needed for gay marriage, says Archbishop of York

John Sentamu says C of E rules define marriage as all churches declare opinions in the debate

The Pope with Tony Blair in Rome in 2007

Blair takes on the Pope by backing gay marriage

The ex-PM, a Catholic convert who introduced same-sex civil unions, intervenes over issue that has split the church

'Romance of the given-away life': Rev Richard Holloway, former Bishop of Edinburgh

Leaving Alexandria: A Memoir of Faith and Doubt, By Richard Holloway

There's one question about Leaving Alexandria - otherwise a quiet epic of a biography about faith, doubt, class, philosophy and social action - that won't go away. How did such an innate dissimulator and self-dramatist as Richard Holloway, wracked with crippling, carnal doubts about the authority and certainties of organised religion, actually get to become the Episcopalian Primus and Bishop of Edinburgh?

Gay marriage 'completely nuts', says Tory MP

Conservative MP Peter Bone today called on the Church of England to block plans for same-sex weddings in a religious setting.

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.

Lent to be observed by more than one in five UK adults

More than one in five British adults is planning to observe the Christian season of Lent when it starts tomorrow, according to a survey.

Letters: Atheism and the Church

What an uplifting article by Mary Ann Sieghart ("You don't have to believe in God to cherish the Church", 20 February). I, like her, thank ... er ... goodness for the Church of England.

Richard Dawkins, scientist: 'I am at a loss to understand how any reasonable person can defend first past the post. AV should be supported by every democrat'

Mary Ann Sieghart: Thank God for the Church of England

The Church of England couldn't hope for a better enemy than Richard Dawkins. Puffed-up, self-regarding, vain, prickly and militant, he displays exactly the character traits that could do with some Christian mellowing. In fact, he's almost an advertisement against atheism. You can't help thinking that a few Sundays in the pews and the odd day volunteering in a Church-run soup kitchen might do him the power of good.

Faith groups warned they 'must abide by laws'

Christians who think they should be exempt from equality legislation are like Muslims trying to impose sharia law on Britain, the chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission has said.

Archbishop to renew his evolution battle with Dawkins

The Archbishop of Canterbury and atheist Professor Richard Dawkins are set to go head to head to discuss the biggest unanswered question of them all.

Carry on blessing: former Bishop of Stepney, Stephen Oliver, clowning around in 2006

Church debate: Who'd be a bishop?

The General Synod debates women bishops again today. While they make up their minds, John Walsh weighs the palaces and puce robes against the political powerlessness

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us