Reverend Mark Bailey, a Church of England pastor has been suspended from the clergy for two years for ‘dishonouring God’ after he had an affair behind his wife’s back.
According to Daily Mail, Reverend Bailey, who describes himself as a ‘family man’, quit his role at Trinity Church in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, in January when his secret relationship was exposed.
The disgraced 56-year-old, who is married to Karen, 54, has now been banned from using his powers as an ordained Church of England clergy member for two years.
But despite being ousted by the church Rev Bailey, from Cheltenham still seems to be enjoying family life.
A smiling photo of him on holiday with his wife and other relatives in Lagos, Portugal, was shared on Instagram earlier this week.
Pastor Mark Bailey and his wife
Bishop of Gloucester, The Right Reverend Rachel Treweek, who imposed the two-year penalty, described Rev Bailey’s behaviour as ‘dishonouring to God and the Church’.
She began investigating his ‘extramarital affair’ – which has now ended – in January after a meeting which he instigated.
Bishop Treweek asked him to ‘step back from his ministry as Team Rector of Trinity Cheltenham and St Paul’, which he did ‘of his own volition’.
The matter was then considered under the Clergy Discipline Measure.
Announcing her findings on Wednesday, Bishop Treweek said clergy are ‘expected to aspire to the highest possible standards of conduct within their ministry’.
‘In imposing this penalty I have sought to acknowledge God’s grace whilst also taking into account the importance of living with consequences,’ she added.
She also considered ‘the need for deep inner reflection with a commitment to address the underlying issues of personal behaviour’.
This smiling photo of the pastor on holiday with his wife and other relatives in Lagos, Portugal, was shared on Instagram earlier this week
Rev Bailey had been pastor at the church in Cheltenham, for more than 20 years and involved in ministry for more than 27 years.
He was appointed the national director for New Wine, a UK-wide Christian fellowship which is working to ‘change the nation’, in October 2013.
Rev Bailey grew up in a Christian home and his father was also a minister.
Speaking in a New Wine leadership video, he said his only focus in life growing up was rugby, until he was seriously injured and began reading Scripture while bed-bound.
He said: ‘I came across this character called Jesus who basically bore no resemblance to anything I’d come across in church before.
‘I realised that he loved me and I was in love with him.’
He added: ‘Basically, I’ve wanted to give back to the one who’s given me everything ever since then.’
After withdrawing as leader of New Wine in January, Rev Bailey announced he was taking a break from Twitter.
He wrote: ‘It’s time to put on my own oxygen mask now #pleasepray.’
He also shared a quote on Instagram, which reads: ‘Mistakes are proof that you are trying.’
His Twitter biography reads: ‘Putting on my own oxygen mask, grateful for grace, pursuing transformation, rebuilding life, married to Kari, family man.’
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