Winchester diocese defies Archbishop​

United Kingdom

I was a priest-in-charge of a parish in Winchester Diocese. ​

My Archdeacon decided to conduct a Capability Procedure against me for reasons of a lack of “emotional intelligence” and asked me to take an emotional intelligence test. Some months later, I took the test, but I have never been given the result. I was advised to consult a lawyer. My lawyer objected to the Capability Procedure on legal grounds. The Archdeacon then decided to go fishing for complaints in the church. As someone of BAME origin, race issues were involved in the objections of some church members, which I mentioned to the Diocese but they did not take up my concerns. This situation caused me mental health issues, which resulted in time off work. I asked to see my Diocesan Bishop, Tim Dakin, for pastoral support. He refused to see me.

Given the Archdeacon’s conduct which stirred up complaints and my health, I decided that the best course was to leave, and I accepted the offer from Tim Dakin and the Diocese of a cash settlement on condition that I signed an NDA/confidentiality clause agreement and left. After my resignation, I wanted to see Tim Dakin but he refused to see me to talk through the issues and refused to grant me enduring permission to officiate (P.T.O.). This remains the current painful and sad situation.

I agree with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby that NDAs/confidentiality clause agreements are unbiblical and should not be used in churches.