Open letter to the Bishop of Guildford . ( sent by snail mail }
OPEN LETTER TO THE BISHOP OF GUILDFORD
Dear Bishop Watson
As a Christian and long standing member of The Religious Society of Friends ( Quakers ), I was horrified to see your latest press release on the subject of Rev Stephen Sizer. You might say that discipline in the Church of England is none of my business. My response would be that it is at least as much my business as it is the business of Jonathan Arkush.
The continued gagging of Rev Sizer represents the continuation of as appalling, and grotesque, a negation of basic human rights in this country, that I can recall. This negation would never be upheld by a court of law or quasi court of law, be it ecclesiastical or secular. It might profit you to reflect on why Jonathan Arkush hurriedly backed off from his CDM charge in 2013.
You reiterate that Rev Sizer is not anti-Semitic. In doing so you concur with the opinions of previous Bishops of Guildford, Bishop Hill and Bishop Gladwin. In other words, all three Bishops that Rev Sizer has served under insist that he is not in any sense racist. If he is not being gagged for racism we can only conclude that his gagging is political. I am sure you are aware that expressions of political opinion are definitely exempt from action under the CDM provisions. If you are not so aware,and choose not to take my word for it, feel free to check it out with Bishop Hill, who is something of an authority on these matters.
You might reflect on how your behaviour has been gleefully seized upon by those engaged in the wholesale and widespread smearing of Jeremy Corbyn.
The political nature of this Ungodly assault on Rev Sizer’s human rights would seem to be confirmed by your astonishing assertion ( presumably in response to a diktat from Archbishop Welby ) that Christian Zionism is the one true faith, and the only version of ( alleged) “Christianity” compatible with parish ministry.
This business is the culmination of a long and vicious vendetta against Rev Sizer by organised apologists for the brutal and illegal Israeli occupation of the Palestinian people. The low point of the campaign came in 2012 when the Council of Christians and Jews entered into an unholy conspiracy with the Board of Deputies ( ie Jonathan Arkush),in an attempt to deceive Bishop Hill into disciplining Rev Sizer. The gruesome details of this conspiracy are fully documented.
On second thoughts perhaps a lower point was Jonathan Arkush’s wilful deceiving of Bishop Hill in respect of the conciliation agreement process in 2013.
On third thoughts perhaps an even lower point was Mr Arkush using your actions as a notch on his bed post during his campaign to be elected Board President. His assertion that he got the Church to impose on Rev Sizer a “ clerical ASBO” is as sickening as sickening gets
That the Church could humiliate and sacrifice one of its senior priests at the behest of such a man, almost beggars belief.
Many Christians who feel that the Palestinian people are entitled to the fair hearing you seek to deny them, have so far remained silent on this issue, on the assumption that the Diocese would eventually come to its senses. It seems that this assumption was a false one. Please be assured that we are not simply going to sit back and take it.