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The H WordHallo again to all. Or ... Hullo? Hello? Hola?

Recently we were ever so gently criticised by one of our readers, who pointed out that we really ought to correct the misspelling of our salutation to 'Hello', which misspelling we were, somewhat obtusely, overlooking week after week. Cynthia replied quickly that she had, for better or worse, learnt 'hallo' in her English childhood and was certain it was an accepted variant of the more American 'hello', as is 'hullo'. But, Cynthia wondered, would other readers—most readers?—of AO think our almost four-year-old salutation a misspelling or, perhaps worse, some sort of PG Wodehouse throwback?

Dead bishops
Those pesky bishops...

Cynthia has brooded this week, along with Kathryn Hughes in 'Previous Convictions', about what happens when language loiters a little behind the times. Brian wants to make sure that, if we are going to deprecate words like 'hallo', that we consider doing the same to 'surplice' and 'fount' and 'misericord'. What to do? Let us know how you would solve our hallo-hullo-hello dilemma.

The complexities of our weekly salutation pale beside the complexities of getting bishops. Unlike the Roman Catholic or Orthodox churches, we Anglicans do not have a primate of the entire church. So the process by which our bishops are chosen is of particular importance. This week in Britain a commission, led by Baroness Perry of Southwark, have proposed radical changes to the process by which bishops are chosen in the Church of England. You can get a good idea of the process in North America by referring to our Episcopal Elections section, in which at the moment there are half a dozen searches publicised.

Stuttering bishops
Just can't get away
from them

Staying with bishops for the moment, in the News Centre there are plans reported to defrock a retired bishop from Uganda, to prosecute for murder a retired bishop from Rwanda, and to appoint an active Archbishop in Australia the governor-general of that country. Just before the convening of the Church of Ireland's General Synod this week, Ireland's Anglican primate has expressed his frustration at the Drumcree situation.

Does it peeve you to scan your service leaflet notice and see that you'll shortly be singing a hymn you quite dislike? If you think this isn't a matter for bishops, well, Archbishop William Temple once remarked exasperatedly about the text of FW Faber's 'Hark! Hark My Soul' that 'its existence is a minor but quite indisputable part of the problem of evil'*. Over at Ship of Fools, columnist Andrew Rumsey tackles the question of hymnology and just what it says about what we believe.

We welcome to the web this week a host of new and interesting sites, from the Diocese of Puerto Rico and Catedral de la Santísima Trinidad in Havana, Cuba to parishes in Canada, England, and the States. And we know that many of you have been waiting for the 39 Articles in their original Latin. Well, euromhn! And there are several good reviews and articles in our Worth Noting section. As always, you'll find everything that's new in New This Week.

See you next week. And keep celebrating the Feast!

Cynthia McFarland's signature
  Brian Reid's signature
Cynthia McFarland
  Brian Reid

Last updated: 13 May 2001

*Its imagery is dubious in the extreme, containing such lines as

Far, far away, like bells at evening pealing,
The voice of Jesus sounds over land and sea,
And laden souls, by thousands meekly stealing,
Kind Shepherd, turn their weary steps to thee.