Stressed Clergy Put Faith in the Power of Unions
By Kaya Burgess
December 4, 2017
|The Unite union has had a surge in ministers joining its faith workers division in the past year|
Priests and rabbis left psychologically bruised by their congregations are seeking outside help for counselling and advice on grievances.
Spurred by concerns over internal disciplinary procedures, religious leaders have been seeking guidance not only from God but from trade unions too.
The Unite union has had a surge in ministers joining its faith workers division in the past year. Almost 1,500, including priests, rabbis and a few imams, are members, a rise of almost 200, or 16 per cent, on the year before.
Clerics are unionising although many, including Church of England priests, have no rights under employment law. Priests are “office-holders” rather than employees and cannot have grievances heard by an employment tribunal.
The Times has seen anonymised data from the union’s helpline for…