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Tribunal urges ouster of C. of E. priest

Jan. 24, 2008 at 4:32 PM

LONDON, Jan. 24 (UPI) -- A Church of England tribunal has ruled unanimously a priest accused of being a bully should be dismissed from his parish.

The Rev. Tom Ambrose, who has been at the Church of St. Mary and St. Michael in Trumpington, just outside Cambridge, since 1999, accused church officials of failing to provide him with the help he needed, The Times of London reported. During hearings last summer, he said members of the parish turned against him when he tried to make necessary changes.

Before he became vicar of the Trumpington church, Ambrose was known as an effective communicator. He also attracted attention when he caught a thief in Newmarket, the ancient horseracing center near Cambridge, and held him for police.

"It is an old-fashioned divorce caused by irretrievable breakdown between a priest and his parish," said Justin Gau, who represented the parish. "Dr Ambrose is a square peg in a round hole. He has talent, he is intelligent and learned, but he is also a bully and a liar."

The tribunal's findings have been submitted to the bishop of Ely.

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