It was amusing to hear ND quoted in General Synod, albeit unattributed. It was by our favourite cheeky chappy of the moment, Bishop Pete Broadbent: ‘TEA has been described as a pragmatic evangelical solution to a catholic problem.’ As the person generally reckoned to have invented it, he naturally took this to be a compliment. As if.

he new Common Worship Ordinal has generally been well received. General Synod insisted that any quotation from earlier CofE documents should be in quotation marks, which sounds reasonable. The only one we can find, however, is when the Archdeacon asserts of the candidates:

They have affirmed and declared their belief in ‘the faith which is revealed in the Holy Scriptures and set forth in the catholic creeds and to which the historic formularies of the Church of England bear witness.’

In contemporary culture, quotation marks are widely used to express irony or cynicism or distance from the concept cited. Was this intended?

One newspaper report spoke of seven deaths in ten years, another of four deaths in six years. Either way, the danger of falling gravestones is a real one. At long last it looks as though things are improving.

The Association of Burial Authorities (ABA) is finally triumphing over the National Association of Memorial Masons (NAMM) and demanding that all gravestones now be buried below ground to at least a third of the overall height, and no longer just stuck with cement onto a base.

When is news not news? This screaming headline came through on an email update service from the BBC, A senior figure in the Church of England has defended a village’s refusal to appoint a woman priest. As the article reveals, The Archdeacon of Suffolk said he understood the reasons and would support the council. As the parish had passed resolutions A & B, how on earth did this ever develop into a story? ‘Understands the reasons’ is an odd phrase.