We believe that this is good news for the whole Christian community.
In June 2007 the management of SSG announced that the bookshops would open on Sundays and Bank Holidays, including Good Friday. [http://timescolumns.typepad.com/gledhill/2007/05/why_christians_.html The Times] Mark Brewer, the Chairman, declared that this was sanctioned by Canon XXIX of the Synod of Laodicea, but controversy erupted over his interpretation since the ancient Epitome of Canon XXIX reads 'A Christian shall not stop work on the sabbath, but on the Lord’s Day.' [http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/content.asp?id=40458] It is not thought that this has become blanket policy.
erupted about the management of the Bookshops throughout 2007. A series of complaints arose about staff morale, working practices, and new contracts. [http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/content.asp?id=44403 ] There have also been concerns that promises to retain a breadth of stock have not been upheld. Sale of the Qu'ran was banned within a month of the takeover, and the Anglican organisation Affirming Catholicism has had its material withdrawn.[http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/content.asp?id=29834] As of 1 November 2007, 12 shops were without managers, and staff at both Exeter and York publicly walked out in October 2007 in protest at new contracts.[http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/content.asp?id=46788 ]
By November 2007, Bishop Michael Perham and Simon Kingston had resigned as SSG trustees, out of concern that there was now a 'conflict of interest' between the SSG management and the best interests of the SPCK. [http://www.thebookseller.com/news/47472-schism-develops-at-troubled-spck.html The Bookseller] The continued use of the SPCK name by the stores is now under review.