May 26, 2020 12.59 pm This story is over 42 months old

Reverend resigns after affair with married woman

He also exchanged inappropriate messages

A Lincolnshire reverend has agreed to resign after a complaint regarding his affair with a married woman.

Reverend John Girtchen was the Vicar of the Benefice of Barrow and Goxhill, but he was suspended as a priest and remains suspended, since the complaint was received against him in February 2018.

The complaint related to his “sexual acts with a married person” and text messages of an “inappropriate nature” which they exchanged between them.

In a statement issued by the Acting Bishop of Lincoln, The Right Revd Dr David Court, said that Mr Girtchen had agreed to a penalty of resignation as the Vicar of the Benefice of Barrow and Goxhill.

The reverend has also agreed to a period of four years prohibition as a priest from May 31, 2020.

The statement read: “The complaint was in regard to sexual acts with a married person, with whom he had a professional relationship and was in a position of trust as a leader in the church.

“He also engaged with text messages of an inappropriate nature with the same person.

“These were acts which amounted to conduct unbecoming and contrary to the Church’s teaching on marriage and a failure to observe appropriate professional boundaries.”