Christian CND is delighted that Stephen Cottrell, currently the Bishop of Chelmsford, will be taking over as Archbishop of York when John Sentamu retires later this year.
Bishop Stephen has been a long-standing opponent of nuclear weapons and supporter of Christian CND. At the Stop Trident demonstration in London in 2016 Bishop Stephen described the project to replace Trident as “an affront to God” whilst addressing the crowds in Trafalgar Square.
In addition to enabling us to attend the Church of England Synod Bishop Stephen also played a key role in securing the current Church of England position on the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Agreed at the York Synod in 2018, it calls on the UK Government to “respond positively” to the Treaty and outline plans for disarmament under the terms of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Bishop Stephen opened the debate on the Ban Treaty in York by saying that there were “no circumstances” in which modern-day Trident missiles can be used to justify the destruction they would cause.
“Therefore, the argument that they have worked as a deterrent is no argument at all. They exist. They could be used. We are prepared to use them. Others want to procure them. Our holding them only makes them seem more attractive to other nation states, often those with the most vicious and repellent governments.”
Bishop Stephen Cottrell, General Synod Debate – July 2018
Bishop Stephen suggested that the government’s response to the Treaty, which has now been signed by 80 states and ratified by 35, was “hugely disappointing” and “looks like complacency”. Following the debate the motion was overwhelmingly passed.
Please join us as we pray for Bishop Stephen and his family ahead of him taking up the new role, as well as thanking God for the work and service of Bishop John Sentamu ahead of his retirement.