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Letter from the Bishop – April 2016

It was the former Bishop of Ludlow, John Saxbee, who I first heard describe a Deanery Synod as a group of Anglicans waiting to go home.

Those of us who have attended our share of such meetings can, I think, be forgiven for understanding such a definition, and might want to extend it to Diocesan Synod as well. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – March 2016

There is some discussion taking place among major church leaders as to whether to change to a fixed date as with Christmas. Press coverage has noted that the Archbishop of Canterbury has shared in these discussions. However Easter remains at present a moveable feast linked to the full moons of the Jewish Passover as it has done for over 1000 years. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – February 2016

This time last year, I wrote some of my first impressions of the Diocese of Hereford. Here’s an update.

Some impressions remain the same, only more so: what I described as the “heroic, faithful and imaginative Christian ministry being exercised across the diocese, by clergy and laity alike”; the warmth and friendliness which Kay and I experience – I enjoy living and working here more than I would have thought possible, and thank God every day for that privilege. (more…)

Letter from the Dean – November 2015

Remembering our departed loved ones – thoughts for November – the month of ‘remembering’.

When Chaplains returned from the Front in the First World War, they came relating the most terrible experiences. They came also, perplexed that the Church offered them very little official encouragement to pray for those who had died. Relatives and friends of those whose lives had been so cruelly taken away in war desperately needed – in their confusion and perplexity – such re-assurance as prayer could give. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – September 2015

FOLLOW! I have been immensely heartened and encouraged by all the conversations that have been taking place under the overall theme of Follow!

By the time you read this, we will have had most of the Follow! meetings and gatherings. But it is essential that the conversation goes on, so that people right across the diocese can be part of a process whereby we build on our rich Christian inheritance in a way that is sustainable and realistic as well as inspired by faith and vision. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – July/August 2015

“God gives you better instructions than a sat nav.”

So read a church notice board I saw not long ago. It caught my eye and I reckon it was a lot better than some. (I can get quite worked up about out of date, boring notice boards, but that’s another story.) (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – June 2015

Following the General Election, we again have a single party with a small overall majority. The new landscape with Scotland almost entirely SNP and England Conservative brings with it a new landscape in respect of future devolution, the distribution of power and how government operate. We may be tired of the endless political chatter. Nevertheless now is a moment to reflect on power and indeed how so often we both take it for granted in so many places and then contrarily in other places focus endlessly upon it. (more…)

Letter from the Dean of Hereford – May 2015

When the General Election takes place on 7th May, I and 30 members of the congregation from the cathedral will be on pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady at Walsingham, and so we’ll have registered for a postal vote. You may think that there’s a sense of ‘getting away’ from the hurlyburly of politics in this clash of dates but the more I think about it, the more I reckon what we’ll be doing in Walsingham says rather important things about May’s vital decisions. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – April 2015

The evidence for the resurrection of Jesus is compelling – the empty tomb, the appearance of Jesus to his disciples and others, the transformation against all the odds of the bewildered, downcast and utterly defeated group of disciples to those who were to go out and share Christian good news across the world. (more…)

Letter from the Bishop – March 2015

Following the Fixed-Term Parliamentary Act 2011 the date of the next general election has been set as Thursday 7th May 2015. Why write about this in a March letter?

This month sees the formal end of the parliamentary session. Perhaps more than ever we need to be attentive to how our nation will be governed in the future. We have come to the end of a hung parliament and indeed are only just emerging from one of the toughest economic periods of austerity in living memory. Issues abound from reducing the national debt to how much we should expect from tax revenues and indeed where public money and priorities should reside. Now is the time to think about hosting events in our parishes and deaneries and indeed asking those standing for election how they will seek to serve the common good. (more…)

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