The Exhumation of Thomas Edward McKenna
The Consistory Court of the Diocese of Newcastle has given permission for the remains of Thomas Edward McKenna, who died in 1993, to be exhumed from a cemetery in Elswick, Newcastle.
The permission was granted by Chancellor Euan Duff in response to an application by the deceased's family.
In response to media interest in this case, we have released the following statement.
A spokesman for the Diocese of Newcastle said: "The Church of England will only grant permission to exhume a person's remains from consecrated ground in exceptional circumstances. Recent cases considered by the Consistory Court have laid out principles that each Chancellor should follow when considering an application for exhumation. These principles state that a Chancellor should consider each case on its merits and where there are reasonable grounds for a body to be temporarily disinterred, the case should be considered. Our Chancellor Euan Duff has followed these principles when considering this case, although he has been very clear that granting permission in no way supports the accusation being made against the deceased. It is recognition that the DNA analysis may help settle this matter once and for all."