Diocese of Oxford suspends two priests

Timothy Davis suspended for two years for “spiritual abuse” and Jonathan Wilmot for three years for adultery

Revd Canon Jonathan Wilmot | March 2018 | Penalty by consent

The Revd Canon Jonathan Anthony de Burgh Wilmot has accepted a penalty by consent for conduct unbecoming or inappropriate to the office and work of the clergy. This follows a formal complaint by the Archdeacon of Berkshire made under the Clergy Discipline Measure (2003).

Canon Wilmot accepted a penalty by consent relating to conduct amounting to adultery with a person in his pastoral care whilst incumbent of the benefice of Reading Greyfriars with New Hope Community Church (therefore amounting to an abuse of position).

The penalty to be imposed, determined by the Bishop of Oxford, is 3 years’ prohibition from exercising the functions of his Orders, effective September 2017. Should Permission to Officiate (PTO) be requested by him following the period of prohibition, a formal risk assessment will be carried out prior to his return to ministry.

Revd. Timothy Davis | March 2018 | Tribunal and penalty

In December 2017, the Revd Tim Davis was found guilty of conduct unbecoming or inappropriate to the office and work of a clerk in Holy Orders through the abuse of spiritual power and authority over a person then aged 15-16.

The penalty imposed on Tim Davis was that he should cease to hold office with immediate effect, and he now stands prohibited from the exercise of holy orders for a period of two years (as announced on Saturday 10th March). Should he wish to return to ministry after the period of prohibition then he will be required to undertake a formal risk assessment.

The findings of the tribunal are instructive for anyone still doubting that spiritual abuse exists, and we commend the young man and his family for their courage and grace throughout this process. The Diocese of Oxford continues to offer pastoral support to all involved.

Please note:

  • The tribunal findings were published in January
  • A formal record of the penalty will be published on the Church of England website  in the coming days.

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