DISGRUNTLED Anglican laity want Bishop Michael Hough to "put us out of our misery'' and resign.A petition will be presented at the next Anglican synod in Portland on June 19 calling for the bishop to quit.Concerned laity spokesman Euan Thompson said there was "widespread belief'' that the bishop's leadership had failed."He should just put us out of our misery and go,'' Mr Thompson said.An Episcopal Standards Commission investigation into Bishop Hough has been under way for 18 months with no resolution.Mr Thompson said he had written to the commission a few months ago to inquire about its progress."I titled my letter `justice delayed is justice denied' and I got a letter back headed `justice hurried is justice denied'."They're worried because whatever they do will set a precedent.''Mr Thompson said the reasons for the resignation call were:- Concern that many laity were leaving the church;- An ongoing exodus of good priests from the diocese; and- The number of parishes without a priest.Mr Thompson also claimed Bishop Hough had bullied clergy for not increasing numbers at church."He feels there should have been a huge turnaround in attendance and the churches should be groaning at the seams."When this didn't happen, he attacked his own clergy. It really amounts to bullying.''A statement released by the Anglican Diocese of Ballarat read: "The bishop believes it is inappropriate to comment publicly on matters of this nature which affect the life and mission of the church: these are rightly addressed from the floor of the synod''.The Courier's calls to the Episcopal Standards Commission were not returned yesterday.