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(a)the bishop of a diocese has executed an irreversible [F1instrument] of resignation as bishop or the bishop considers that he will be unable to discharge any or all of his functions by reason of illness or absence from his diocese [F2or by reason of his forthcoming translation to another see], and
(b)there is no person in episcopal orders in the diocese who is for the time being authorised to discharge the functions of the bishop,
the bishop may by an instrument under his hand delegate to a person in episcopal orders who is a member of the Church of England without the consent of the diocesan synod but after consultation with the bishop’s council and standing committee unless the bishop is unable to consult the bishop’s council and standing committee by reason of his illness such of his functions as may be specified in the instrument, except functions to which an instrument made under section 10 of the M1Dioceses Measure 1978 or a scheme made under section 11 of that Measure relates [F3and functions under any Canon made under section 9(2) of the Clergy (Ordination and Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure 1964 [F4and functions under section 2 of the Priests (Ordination of Women) Measure 1993].]
(2)The instrument made by a bishop under subsection (1)
above shall remain in operation for a period specified in the instrument F5. . . but which may be extended by the archbishop of the province.
(3)Where a see is vacant or where the bishop of a diocese is not able to, or does not otherwise, exercise the power conferred on him by subsection (1) above to delegate all of his functions which he may delegate, the archbishop of the province shall exercise the power in lieu of the bishop without the consultation with the bishop’s council and standing committee required by subsection (1) of this section; and if that archbishop is unable by reason of illness or absence from his province to exercise the power under this subsection or if the see of that archbishop is vacant the power shall be exercised by the senior bishop of the province.
(4)Such an instrument made under this section shall come into operation on the day after the day on which it is made or on such later date as may be specified therein.
(5)A power of appointment under subsection (1) or (3) above may be exercised by the appointment of two or more persons qualified for such appointment and by the division among them, whether territorially or otherwise, of the functions to be performed.
(6)Where a function which has been delegated under this section requires the application of the bishop’s seal to a document, the document shall be issued as though it were a deed and be executed by the person to whom the function has been delegated.
(7)A statement in a document issued by a person to whom a function has been delegated under this section that the function has been so delegated to him shall be conclusive evidence of that fact.
(8)An instrument made under this section may be varied or revoked by a subsequent instrument similarly made.
(9)On making an instrument under this section or on making an irreversible [F1instrument] of resignation the person making the document shall send a certified copy to the Church Commissioners and to the registrar of the diocese, and the registrar shall file it in the diocesan registry.
(10)The making of an instrument under this section shall not be taken as divesting the bishop of the diocese of any of his functions.
of the M2Ecclesiastical Offices (Age Limit) Measure 1975, section 3 of the M3Church of England (Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure 1976, section 43 of the M4Endowments and Glebe Measure 1976 and section 11(2) of the M5Church of England (Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure 1978 are hereby repealed.
(12)Any instrument made by a bishop before this section comes into operation relating to his resignation as bishop or relating to the delegation of his functions as bishop and which requires to be implemented, shall be deemed to have been made under this section.
(13)In this section—
“irreversibleinstrument” means [F1an instrument] duly executed and completed by the bishop which has been accepted by the archbishop of the province;
“senior bishop” means, in the province of Canterbury, the bishop of London and after him the bishop of Winchester and, in the province of York, the bishop of Durham and subject thereto the diocesan bishop who has held office as diocesan bishop in the province in question without interruption from any cause for the longest time.
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