Bishop of Rochester to resign a decade early

One of the Church of England’s most outspoken bishops has announced that he is to resign a decade early to devote the rest of his life to work with Christians in Islamic areas.

The Bishop of Rochester, Dr Michael Nazir-Ali, the Church’s only Asian bishop, who is just 59 and could have stayed at Rochester until his 70th birthday, intends to use his expertise as an Islamic scholar to work in Pakistan where he was born and in the Middle East to build bridges between Christians and Muslims.

A conservative evangelical, he will step down in September after nearly 15 years in the diocese.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

12 comments on “Bishop of Rochester to resign a decade early

  1. Chazaq says:

    [blockquote]work with Christians in Islamic areas[/blockquote]Why not just stay in England and do that? More muslims attend mosque each week in England than there are Anglicans who go to church there. The ongoing Islamization of England is a wonder to behold. Pakistan gets a good man, though, and Nazir-Ali won’t have to waste so much time putzing around with the inanities of Rowan Williams and the COE. Lord, send a mighty angel to protect Bishop Michael. He’s gonna need it.

  2. robroy says:

    A tremendous loss for the COE.

  3. MySoulInSilenceWaits says:

    When the government of England and the ABC support the marginalization of the teaching and practicing of the faith; where those who have left the church outnumber those who have stayed and daily nurse their grievances — real and imagined –towards her; where the weak within the church will fall for anything; where the triumphal squeals of seculariists within the church pierce the heart of Christ; where there is love for the outer trappings of religiosity and little for God;and where all but a few are blind to history, what does one do?

  4. rugbyplayingpriest says:

    #1 I would suggest the reason he leaves England is becuase he is thoroughly fed up with the alienation he feels from the liberal ascendancy, coupled with the fact that I smell GAFCON writ large accross this whole news item.

    As a priest in his Diocese I blogged it this morning…and had the same sentiments as #3…

    The true story here is written between the lines…….

  5. AnglicanFirst says:

    I had the personal pleasure of listening to Bishop Nazir-Ali preach at Truro Church several years ago and had the opportunity to shake his hand after the service and to wish him well.

    This bishop is a true Christian who is leaving the comforts and privileges of being the Bishop of Rochester behind for the very real mortal dangers and spiritual tests of Muslim-dominated Pakistan.

    Too bad that ECUSA has few such bishops. Most of our bishops seem to be uncertain or hesitant or radical-progressives or borderline to actual disbelievers in the divinity of Christ or proclaimers of an impossible and God-less utopia-on-earth rather than Salvation through Christ or or all of the above or something else.

  6. A Floridian says:

    Charles’ assent to the throne will likely mean further erosion of the Church of England in England.
    She has more and more foes within and without.

  7. Spiro says:

    (Modified from my posting at StandFirm):

    Here is a man of good conscience, conviction, and integrity.
    I cannot imagine how it has been for Bishop Michael, working with Archbishop Rowan Yes-No-Yes-No-Yes-No Williams all these years. On top of that +Michael keeps getting constant attacks from both within and without the Church of England.

    Thank you +Michael for many years of faithful witness in a hostile secular world, and even with worse hostility from your fellow Anglican bishops in the UK and across the pond.

    I think +Michael may find his work as a retiree to be more productive in fighting for the Cause of Christ than what is going on in his present position. He certainly understands Islam far more than +++Rowan and all these other egg-heads who keep coming up with half-baked and stupid ideas on how to accommodate (read appease) Islam in our present world.

    Sometimes, in working outside the institution one accomplishes far much more.
    The godly bishop must have been at his wit’s end with all that is currently going on in the Anglican Communion.
    God Bless you +Michael.

    Fr. Kingsley Jon-Ubabuco
    Arlington Texas.

  8. azusa says:

    #4: His life will not be safe if he returns to Pakistan, but he faces threats in England anyway, a country where it is now against the law to criticize homosexuality, and where radical Islamists have threatened his life.
    I agree there is more to this story than immediately meets the eye.
    My own feverish suspicion: in the new Gafcon World Realignment of Anglicanism, Nazir-ali, now outside the Cof E, will bid fair to be the leader of the Global South. Stay tuned!

  9. austin says:

    There has also been speculation that, though leaning Evangelical, Bp. Nazir may return to the Catholic church.

  10. Jerod says:

    #8: As to your suspicion, I’d be wary of reading that into it.

    He will be a loss to CofE. I hope for a solid replacement.

  11. Jeffersonian says:

    This is a blow to the CoE, but only in the sense that Bishop Michael was a brake on the runaway train of revisionism within it. He wasn’t able to reverse its self-destructive direction, nor significantly cause a deviation from the now-inevitable doom of the Church and quite possibly Albion itself. I think it’s a brilliant move to take his faith to somewhere it will be heard and heeded.

  12. libraryjim says:

    I will be sad for the loss of a true prophetic voice in England, but he has to go where the Lord leads him. May God bless his new ministry!