The following media release was issued by the Synod of Bishops on 19 October 2012.
As has been made clear in earlier press releases, the Synod of Bishops has appointed a small team from among its members to work through the Report of the Task Team (appointed in terms of Canon 21.3 by the Archbishop, on the recommendation of the Synod of Bishops) and to address and take forward the recommendations it makes, in accordance with the provisions of Canon Law and with the church’s best pastoral practice. In doing this, the team are continuing to hold meetings with both the Diocesan Executive and the Representatives of the Cathedral Parish. The Report of the Task Team has been shared with both groups, with the clear agreement by all sides that it would remain confidential while the process continues, and would only be released after this has been completed, and then only by mutual agreement of all the parties.
It is therefore a matter of considerable regret that, either selectively or in totality, the contents of the Task Team’s Report has been made public and shared more widely in various ways. This is damaging of the creation and sustaining of an atmosphere of trust and good faith, which is so vital to the processes of mediation for which the courts have called, to which the parties have agreed, and which the Synod of Bishops is supporting through its team appointed to take forward the recommendations of the Task Team’s Report. The Synod of Bishops takes this opportunity to reaffirm its wholehearted commitment to continuing with this process, in an atmosphere of confidentiality appropriate to ensuring the integrity of its pastoral relationships and personal well-being of all concerned, and the interests of justice.