We believe; 1 The Church of England (CofE) has been wrongfully engaged in asset stripping of parishes over many years, taking Priests away, seizing, and, selling, their Property, claiming they and it had no other options, which this petition challenges. 2 There is no moral justification for what has been done. 3 It is based on an alleged requirement to raise funds, to meet a legal obligation to provide a pension fund for retired priests but the legal basis of the asset stripping was fatally flawed and wrongful. 4 PCCs have been misled, and denied their rights. 5 Pastoral Measures have been disregarded, distorted and, perverted. We call upon the Church Commissioners, and Bishops of Winchester to review past actions, acknowledge, that they wronged, the people, they are appointed to serve, by past perverse, processes, and, procedures, returning, what has been taken from them, in terms of pastoral care, administered by ordained stipendiary ministers, and, the capital assets, belonging to parishes, held in trust, but wrongfully taken from them, for the benefit of central funds, some of which has been wasted by mismanagement. We call also, for a reversal of the current policy, of downsizing, of the parochial church, by merging of parishes into centralised benefices, which suppress and suffocate the potential growth of the church in small rural parishes especially. Additionally we ask for a revision of the policy for the recruitment and appointment of priests calling for a more positive approach to encourage greater numbers of applicants to apply and for a flexible method of introducing them into ministry within parishes as probationers to be quickly introduced to those they are to minister to, while learning their necessary skills. We ask also that the rights of patronage currently in the hands of historic appointees who no longer provide support to the churches they claim the right to appoint ministers to, be transferred to the Parishes and PCCs, of the churches, that in fact, do provide support both in their giving and service to the church.
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