Sunday, 31 July 2011

More on CRB checks.

I have to admit to not being a great fan of the increasing red tape which seems to face churches in a variety of areas, Health and Safety, Fire Regulations, Schedule A, B,C etc. or whatever the letters are and the move from our safeguarding system which seemed to be working well to CRB checks for an increasing range of people.

I have not felt that CRB checks are as good as some of the experts in the field of safeguarding would have us believe and being ever so slightly cynical I am not entirely sure they are not just a money making scheme for the government of the day (whoever they might be).

There are a number of issues with this whole process in my opinion.

1) the stupidity of having to have multiple CRB's for different organisations. (I know someone who has eleven – even Brian Rix could not come up with a farce like this)

2) The cost involved in having them done - especially given how tight for money some organisations are.

3) How good are they? I think they are rather like the MOT certificate on a car which is only valid on the day it is issued.

4) What do they prove - in a sense only that someone has not been caught. They certainly do not in my opinion prove that a person is not an axe murderer or multiple rapist.

5) Are the people they are meant to protect really any safer because of them? If someone wants to abuse other people they can do so with or without CRB checks.

6) Isn’t there a danger that some very long serving church members could feel their integrity is being challenged by this? Why do we need to ask a local preacher of 50 years standing who never has any involvement with children except in a worship service to submit themselves to this process? (I know it’s not here yet but mark my words it won’t be long)

7) Why is it necessary to list offences that may have been committed when someone was much younger and may have been done in  a moment of silliness, especially if they are not the type of offences that are in any way relevant to working with vulnerable people.  There may be people who feel they have moved on from their past lives and this type of thing only serves to rake up old stuff they may wish to forget. I am sure there is a saying about God taking our sins and burying them at the bottom of the deepest sea and then putting up a sign which says ‘No Fishing’


I have been on the safeguarding training with the Methodist church but to be honest I still remain unconvinced of the validity of these checks.Our district safeguarding officer while being very good did not really give me any clarity on how these checks really made a difference to the safety of vulnerable people. Of course the cynic in me says it is an exercise in ticking boxes but I am sure there is someone who will argue otherwise.

I do sense there is a very real possibility that we are not far away from standing on our church doors greeting people and saying do you have a CRB check? I hope I am wrong but as the insidious introduction of these checks come in it may be that we struggle to fill posts where people feel it is totally unnecessary to go through this system.

Hymn for today

This week’s hymn from Fanny J Crosby –tune can be heard here


Be Thou exalted, forever and ever,
God of eternity, Ancient of Days!
Wondrous in majesty, perfect in wisdom,
Glorious in holiness, fearful in praise.


Be Thou exalted by seraphs and angels,
Be Thou exalted with harp and with song;
Saints in their anthems of rapture adore Thee,
Martyrs the loud hallelujahs prolong.

Be Thou exalted, O Son of the Highest!
Gracious Redeemer, our Savior and King!
One with the Father, co-equal in glory,
Here at Thy footstool our homage we bring.


Be Thou exalted, O Spirit eternal!
Dwell in our hearts, keep us holy within;
Lead to Thy home in the life everlasting,
Open its portals and welcome us in.


Saturday, 30 July 2011

Formatting on last post

Not sure what is going on with the formatting in my last post – it looks fine in Windows Live Writer and in blogger itself but comes out all over the place on the blog. The important things is it is all there.

CRB checks for Local Preachers

I have just posted about this on the Faith and Worship facebook page.
Persons seeking a note to preach will now require a CRB check and those people on trial will need a CRB check before they can be come fully accredited - the details are copied below from the frequently asked questions page on the Methodist Church Website. Go to Local Preachers and then FAQ’s.

Do I need a CRB check to become come a local preacher?
It is expected that both during training and once accredited that new local preachers will be
engaged in church services which are for children or include children and adults who may be
It is therefore required that:
• Local preachers should obtain a CRB disclosure prior to going on trial.
• For those local preachers currently on trial, a CRB disclosure should be obtained before
their accreditation can be completed.
Existing local preachers need to be CRB checked where they have developed a significant ministry
of preaching or teaching with children, young people or adults who may be vulnerable.
Tel: 0207 467 5216 | Email: : : : Web:

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Christmas is coming - official.

I have just heard on the radio that Harrods and Selfridges have opened their Christmas departments today and trade has apparently been quite brisk.
What a shame that we can not at least get the summer holidays out of the way before they start with Christmas - no wonder people are fed up with it by the time we get there.
I think I might ban the word until at least the 1st December.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Tragedy - Why?

Blogging has been very light here of late - mainly because I have not felt there was much I wanted to blog about but the news this weekend and conversations at work yesterday have brought me out of blogging sabbatical.
The question I heard yesterday in respect of the problems in Somalia, the killing in Norway and the death of Amy Winehouse was why? Some of my colleagues then sprung the where is God in these things and I have to admit I find myself agreeing with them in some senses. it is difficult to argue the concept of a loving God when such things happen and especially when the news seems to be saying the gunman is a 'Christian'.
I have to admit to not knowing the answer and just for a time being like Thomas because I am human and naturally wonder about these things.
Answers on a postcard perhaps?

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Hymn for today

Here is this weeks offering from the pen of Fanny J Crosby and as usual the tune can be heard over at  Cyberhymnal

Awake! Awake! the Master now is calling us,
Arise! Arise! And, trusting in His Word,
Go forth! Go forth! Proclaim the year of jubilee,
And take the cross, the blessèd cross of Christ our Lord.


On, on, swell the chorus,
On, on, the morning star is shining o’er us;
On, on, while before us,
Our mighty, mighty Savior leads the way.
Glory, glory, hear the everlasting throng,
Shout “Hosanna!” while we boldly march along;
Faithful soldiers here below, only Jesus will we know;
Shouting “Free salvation!” o’er the world we go.

A cry for light from dying ones in heathen lands;
It comes, it comes across the ocean’s foam;
Then haste! Oh, haste to spread the words of truth abroad,
Forgetting not the starving poor at home, dear home.


O Church of God, extend thy kind, maternal arms,
To save the lost on mountains dark and cold;
Reach out thy hand with loving smile to rescue them,
And bring them to the shelter of the Savior’s fold.


Look up! Look up! The promised day is drawing near,
When all shall hail, shall hail the Savior King;
When peace and joy shall fold their wings in every clime,
And “Glory, hallelujah!” o’er the earth shall ring.


Sunday, 3 July 2011

Hymn for today

Here  is this week’s offering from the pen of Fanny J Crosby. As usual the tune can be heard at Cyberhymnal


We’ll give our hearts to Jesus,
And learn His Name to praise,
The blessèd Bible tells us,
How pleasant are His ways.
We’ll give our hearts to Jesus,
In sunny childhood’s hours,
Where life is like the springtime
And full of buds and flowers.


And when we safely anchor
On Canaan’s happy shore,
To Him be all the glory,
And praise forever more.

We’ll give our hearts to Jesus,
Our best and dearest Friend,
He like a gentle shepherd,
Will guide us to the end.
In green and fragrant pastures,
His little flock will lead,
Beside the quiet waters,
Supplying all we need.


We’ll give our hearts to Jesus,
Who died that we might live,
Our hearts, though weak and sinful,
Are all we have to give.
The simple prayer of childhood,
Our God will ne’er despise,
A lowly contrite spirit
Is precious in His eyes.