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Monday, 18 October 2010

Coping with (electoral) rejection

So, that's great for all those who were elected - what about those who weren't?

There were hundreds of candidates across the country who stood in the General Synod elections who were not elected. In some places - notably London, there were up to 5 people standing for each place. That's a large attrition rate, often with painful personal implications.

So, if you stood, but did not get in, I just wanted to say thank you.

For what it's worth, I have been there before (I stood in 2000 and wasn't elected), and so I know something of what it feels like to make yourself vulnerable by offering to stand, creating the election address, and then awaiting the results of the electorate...

Do not be too downhearted!  Don't start thinking that is the only indication of people's confidence in you. It is difficult to see (even from the detailed results) the full extent of people's support for you - only three of those I voted for in my top 6 candidates were elected in our clergy election: so be assured that others have faith even in candidates who do not get elected.

I encourage you to think about continuing to support the church, and perhaps standing again in future. See what you can learn from those who did get elected this time; from their election addresses, and how they have become known across the diocese.

And if there are things that you think could be done a little differently next time elections are held in your diocese, please do suggest them - for example some dioceses had candidates election addresses, and even sometimes video of candidates online; or held real or 'virtual' hustings. (Bishop Alan in particular was asking for a more enlightened way of trying to do our elections. And that was before the results came out. Including his not getting elected this time either.)

So thanks again for your support by standing; please continue your interest and involvement in your parish, deanery and diocese. And please support those who were elected. Come and sit in on some of the General Synod's coming sessions: in London in Nov & February, and in York in July. All sessions are always open to non-synod members too.

Alastair Cutting (Chichester Diocese)

Friday, 15 October 2010

The New General Synod

So, all across the country, excited new members of General Synod have been elected all this week! (Well, I guess the fact that you are reading this blog makes you & me the sort of people that probably consider synod elections exciting...) The official list is here; Peter Owen's helpful unofficial one is here.

So what happens next? Well, each diocese will be returning to Church House Westminster the official results from the elections.

New members will need the dates of General Synod meetings - but just so you have the immediate ones:

22 - 24 November for the Inauguration of new Synod in London, starting with a service in Westminster Abbey in the presence of the Supreme Governor, the Queen, who will then address the new synod back in the chamber at Church House immediately afterwards.

Synod then also meets in London again from the 7-11 of February; and in York 8-12 July, based in the university in York.

One of the other things new blog-savvy members of synod will of course want to do is to have the facility to contribute to this Synod Blog. Any member sending an email to synod@mac.com with 'Add to Synod blog' in the subject line will be included as a blog author.

And if you didn't get elected to synod, sorry - but at least you can celebrate with all the time you have saved. Dave Walker has a Press Release that you may also be able to use:

Alastair Cutting (Chichester Diocese)

Sunday, 10 October 2010

General Synod results are (coming) in

So, the polling stations for General Synod are closed (actually, it was a postal vote, but Friday 8 October was the last day for votes to arrive).

Election counting - credit link Reuters
Counting takes place this week; different diocese are holding counts on different days - Liverpool on Monday 11 October I gather, Chichester on Thursday 14.

In fact, some results are in already, the Channel Islands for example, and some in Chester. The definitive independent resource for membership lists etc comes from Peter Owen's page of Synod members. Expect to see the empty boxes on his grid populated with new members over coming days. (To help Peter keep his list up-to-date, please email him results here.) Peter also feeds a lot of synod data into the Thinking Anglican's posts related to General Synod.

What will be hard to discern at this stage, I suspect, is how the new synod will be likely to vote on key upcoming votes - like the annual parochial fees?? Only kidding...

Alastair Cutting