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IICSA Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

The Anglican Church Investigation Report

Contents

C.2: Structure of the Church in Wales

5. The Church in Wales consists of:[1]

  • the Representative Body of the Church in Wales, which is responsible for looking after the assets of the Church in Wales; and
  • the Governing Body of the Church in Wales, which is the policy-making body and supreme legislature of the Church and comprises the Bench of Bishops (six diocesan bishops), 51 representatives from the clergy and 86 lay representatives.

It is made up of six dioceses (Bangor, Llandaff, Monmouth, St Asaph, St David’s, and Swansea and Brecon), each of which is led by a diocesan bishop.

Diocesan map of the Church in Wales

Diocesan map of the Church in Wales

6. Bishops in the Church in Wales are elected by an electoral college made up of elected clergy and lay people. The electoral college also elects the Archbishop of Wales from amongst the existing diocesan bishops.[2]

7. One member of the Bench of Bishops has specific responsibility for safeguarding.[3] When diocesan bishops are elected in the Church in Wales they swear an oath of canonical obedience to the Archbishop, but this does not provide the Archbishop with any power of compulsion or direction over other bishops. The Archbishop has no jurisdiction over the dioceses of other bishops, they are entirely self-governing. He can try to influence but cannot exercise any command or control.[4]

8. The Church in Wales has started to group parishes together into ministry areas (which are larger than parishes, often grouping several parishes over a wide geographic area), with a team of lay people and clergy taking responsibility for running the area. These teams are intended to enable specialisation in different types of ministry, in particular the development of ministry to connect with young people.[5]

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