Churches are selling off their stained glass windows and organs to fund upkeep, a Church of England court has warned.
John Bullimore, chancellor of the Diocese of Derby, said that fears that churches would rip out valuable artefacts to raise money were well-founded.
Ruling on an application by All Saints Church, Findern, to remove a 150-year-old organ and install a kitchen and toilet, Mr Bullimore said he shared the concerns of the organ adviser that small churches would "sell off assets - furniture or fixtures and fittings - because they are ‘not really needed’, or the mission of the church locally is more important".
"I do not think this danger is altogether fanciful," he said, adding that he had previously heard a case where a church had sought to sell its stained glass windows to a Japanese firm "to adorn some building for rest, recreation and refreshment thousands of miles away".
The request had been turned down, he said, in part because it was "wrong in principle for churches to look round their interiors in times of need to see what ‘treasures’ they could dispose of as decorative items, whether they be unused pulpits or balconies, or pews or windows, or indeed anything else, that might find a ready sale, and raise some funds."
He added: "Such items are part of the heritage, and were probably first acquired in many cases as the result of many small and sacrificial gifts by a large number of parishioners and benefactors contributing to the costs of erecting and fitting out the church.
"So in my own limited experience, I think the danger is real."
However, he granted the church permission to remove the organ because its sale was "by no means a money-raising scheme" and the change would allow the church to install better facilities.
Thursday, July 5, 2018
Anglican churches in England are selling stained glass windows and organs to make ends meet
The Church of England has been in a death spiral for so long that I can't remember when it wasn't. The obvious solution is to preach the true gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, with the Bible as the only authority of faith and practice, with real Bible-believing Christians in the pulpits and pews. However, such a course is anathema to a church that's deep into apostasy; as a result, those churches that haven't sold their buildings and had them converted into mosques are now selling their artifacts, as reported by Olivia Rudgard of the London Daily Telegraph, June 27, 2018 (link in original):