Second Church Estates Commissioner

In this section you can find out more about the role of the Second Church Estates Commissioner and about the current incumbent, Rt Hon. Caroline Spelman MP.

The Second Church Estates Commissioner provides an important link between Government and the established Church and whilst the position exists to maintain the statutory accountability of the Church Commissioners to Parliament, the position has evolved over the time of successive Second Commissioners to seek to provide a link between Government and Parliament on the one hand and the established Church on the other.

The Second Commissioner answers oral and written questions from MPs about Church of England matters, is a member of the Ecclesiastical Committee and steers Church of England legislation through the House of Commons.

He or she is required to be a confirmed lay member of the Church of England and is by convention an MP from the governing political party.  The post is a Crown appointment, made on the advice of the Prime Minister and whilst it is honorary and unpaid, the position of Second Church Estates Commissioner is included in the published list of Government members.

The Second Church Estates Commissioner is also an ex-officio member of the Church of England's General Synod.