Tributes have been paid to a leading lay member of the Church in Wales who retires at the end of the year.
His Honour Philip Price QC is retiring as Chair of the Standing Committee of the Church in Wales after 11 years’ service. He has been a member of the Governing Body since 1993 and has chaired many of its meetings during that time. In addition, Judge Philip has served the Church in a variety of other key roles. He chaired the Legal Sub Committee for 11 years, was the first President of the Church’s Disciplinary Tribunal, and served as an episcopal elector, a trustee of the Representative Body and Chancellor of the Diocese of Monmouth.
The Archbishop of Wales, Dr Barry Morgan, described Judge Philip as an “enormous attribute” to the Church. He said, “Philip has given of his time, gifts and of himself unstintingly in a variety of voluntary capacities and will be solely missed in the councils of the Church in Wales. He has been an enormous attribute to the Church. I thank him for all he has done and wish him every blessing for the future.”
The Bishop of Swansea and Brecon, John Davies, added, “Philip has steered the Governing Body through some memorable debates, for example he chaired the debate of the Bill to enable women to be consecrated as bishops. He was usually the ‘go to’ person whenever there was any matter that was particularly controversial or procedurally problematic – Philip would chair the Governing Body with authority for that part of the meeting.
“As chair of the Standing Committee, he served on the Business Sub-Committee, taking a very real and proactive interest in the business of the Governing Body. We wish him well in his retirement and say a sincere thank-you for all the work he has done.”
As well as his huge contribution to the life of the Church, Judge Philip led a prominent career as a barrister, Queen’s Counsel, practising in Cardiff and London, and served for 15 years as a circuit judge specialising in civil and family work. He is also President of the Mental Health Review Tribunal for Wales and President of LATCH, Wales’ children’s cancer charity.
He said, “It has been a great privilege to have worked with so many gifted and committed people on the Governing Body over the years and to have been part of an era which brought many changes to the Church in Wales. For me, the most significant of these changes has been women’s ministry – first as priests and now as bishops. I am glad to have been associated with that cause during the critical years and delighted to see it come to fruition this year with the election of our first woman bishop. That’s a terrific milestone and one which I am confident will enable the Church to grow in strength as it serves the people of Wales.”