SUPPORTERS of Bishop Michael Hough have defended claims all Anglican laity want him to resign.The calls follow comments made by laity spokesman Euan Thompson last week that there is "widespread belief" that the bishop's leadership has failed.He also said Bishop Hough should "put us out of our misery and go".A petition will be presented at the next Anglican synod in Portland on June 19 calling for the bishop to quit.Patricia McFadyen said many laity who attended the Anglican Church were distressed at Mr Thompson's comments."Mr Thompson is not authorised to speak on behalf of all the laity, nor is he authorised to take up a petition. His remarks reflect his own personal opinion and are likely to decrease numbers attending church," Ms McFadyen said.Ballarat Anglican posted on The Courier website that not all laity were against Bishop Hough."Some laity actually support Bishop Michael and wish him to remain as the Anglican Bishop of Ballarat".The Truth posted that they had never met a bishop who worked harder or cared more for his clergy. "... I struggle to see why a bishop who has fought to save a dying church is being attacked rather than praised ...".An Episcopal Standards Commission investigation into Bishop Hough has been under way for 18 months with no resolution.