Bishop of Oxford candidates fail to get enough votes

The Bishop of Oxford Image copyright Church of England
Image caption The Right Reverend John Pritchard retired as Bishop of Oxford in October after seven years

No one has been appointed to become the new Bishop of Oxford, the diocese has announced.

The Archbishop of Canterbury said the Crown Nominations Commission had "been unable to discern the candidate whom God is calling at this stage".

The See of Oxford vacancy will be not be re-considered until early next year.

The Right Rev Colin Fletcher will continue to serve as Acting Bishop after Bishop John Pritchard retired in October.

'Clearly disappointing'

The diocese, which covers Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxford, said interviews took place on 11 and 12 May.

But under the Church Of England election rules, no candidate received the required number of votes for nomination.

Bishop Fletcher said: "While it is clearly disappointing that the vacancy is being extended until later next year, it is of course vitally important that the right appointment is made."

The Most Rev Justin Welby said: "I will continue to keep the diocese in my prayers over the next months."

The Oxford Crown Nominations Commission will reconvene on 4 February, 2016.

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