Archbishop of York Statement on the Crown Nominations Commission for the next Bishop of Carlisle

“At the conclusion of a lengthy process of discernment, culminating in two days of interviews on 13 and 14 December, the Crown Nominations Commission considering the nomination of the next Bishop of Carlisle has, very sadly, not been able reach the level of consensus required to nominate a new Diocesan Bishop.

“Over the course of the next months, the Crown Nominations Commission will need to reflect, and make a decision about which stage it wishes to re-commence the discernment process. This is not likely to be before the Spring of 2025.

“Bishop Rob Saner-Haigh, the Bishop of Penrith, will continue serving as acting Diocesan Bishop alongside the senior leadership team in the Diocese of Carlisle.

“Please continue to hold the Diocese of Carlisle and the discernment of the Crown Nominations Commission in your prayers.” 


•    A Crown Nominations Commission (CNC) considers vacancies in Diocesan Bishoprics in the Provinces of Canterbury and York, and candidates for appointments to them.

•    Under the Standing Orders of the General Synod, a nomination cannot be made to the Crown to fill a vacant see unless it has received the support of at least two-thirds of the total number of the voting members of the Commission (10 out of 14) in a secret ballot.

•    The voting members of the Crown Nominations Commission for a vacant see are the two Archbishops (or a Diocesan Bishop acting on their behalf), 6 members elected from the Vacancy in See Committee of the Diocese and 6 ‘Central Members’ elected from the General Synod. The Archbishops’ Secretary for Appointments and the Prime Minister’s Appointments Secretary are non-voting members of the Commission.

•    Under the Standing Orders of the General Synod, if the Commission, having completed its considerations on a vacancy, does not select a name for submission to the Crown, it may direct that the process for filling the vacancy is to recommence at the stage which it specifies.

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