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UK news in brief

by
01 July 2022

Church of Ireland

The Ven. Adrian Wilkinson, who has been elected as the next Bishop of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory

The Ven. Adrian Wilkinson, who has been elected as the next Bishop of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory

Next Bishop of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory elected

THE Archdeacon of Cork, Cloyne and Ross, the Ven. Adrian Wilkinson, has been chosen as the next Bishop of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory in the Church of Ireland, it was announced on Thursday of last week. Archdeacon Wilkinson, who is 53, was ordained in 1994 and served his curacy in the diocese of Cork, Cloyne and Ross. He was then a Rector in the diocese of Meath & Kildare, before taking his current post in 2014. A consecration date has yet to be set. He said: “I am humbled and honoured to have been elected. . . I look forward to this new chapter in ministry.” The Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Michael Jackson, said: “Ahead lies a most fruitful time for the bishop to get to know the clergy and people of the diocese and to establish him in the wider community.”

 

New initiative for abuse survivors

THE diocese of Newcastle has launched a set of resources to help both victims of abuse and the people who support them, including family and clergy. The project, “If I Told You, What Would You Do?”, released on Thursday of last week, is partly funded by the charity Safe Spaces, and includes seven videos in which more than 50 people, including the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, read the words of survivors. Artwork and music made by survivors is also available. The Bishop of Berwick, the Rt Revd Mark Wroe, who is currently Acting Bishop of Newcastle, said: “We believe that one of the best ways we can help individuals and communities to respond well to abuse is through creative projects. This creates space for a conversation between those with lived experience and others in their communities.”

  

CEO appointed for Church Pastoral Aid Society

THE Vicar of St Thomas’s, Lancaster, the Revd Jon Scamman, has been appointed the new chief executive of the Church Pastoral Aid Society (CPAS), a mission organisation that provides resources and patronage for Evangelical churches across the UK. The Bishop of Chester, the Rt Revd Mark Tanner, who chairs CPAS, said on Monday that he was “delighted” to announce the appointment. He had, he said, recently discovered that the first Vicar of St Thomas’s, Lancaster, had left in 1845 to become “secretary” of the CPAS, and, as such, Mr Scamman was “following in his illustrious predecessor’s footsteps”. The CPAS is a patron of more than 700 English parishes. Last year, a church in north London expressed its intention to seek an alternative sponsor over differences between the church’s identity and that of the CPAS (News, 12 March 2021).

 

Welcome Course launched for Hong Kong arrivals

THE founder of UKHK, Dr Krish Kandiah, has created a free video course to help churches support and welcome new UK arrivals from Hong Kong. Hundreds of thousands of people from Hong Kong have chosen to move to the UK since the British Nationals Overseas (BNO) visa scheme was introduced in January 2021. The Welcome Course, released earlier this month, covers six topics over six weeks: moving to the UK, exploring British culture, making friends, enjoying well-being, solving problems, and valuing citizenship. It is presented by Dr Kandiah, Esther, who moved to the UK from Hong Kong in 2017, and Joanna, whose parents moved to the UK from Jamaica. He said: “Through the course, our church communities can get behind people, and walk with them as they get to grips with life in the UK. It’s not just about accepting new arrivals but integrating them into our culture.” www.ukhk.org

 

Volunteers wanted for final church bat survey

THE Bats in Churches project is appealing for volunteers to help with the final year of the National Bats in Churches Survey and the completion of its research into how and why bats are using churches. The survey opened in 2019 (News, 4 October 2019). So far, 13 species of bat have been recorded in churches, including one of the rarest mammals in Britain. The overarching project began a few years earlier, run jointly by the Government’s conservation agency Natural England, the Church of England, the Bat Conservation Trust, Historic England, and the Churches Conservation Trust (News, 24 February 2017). The training and surveys officer at Bats in Churches, Claire Boothby, said: “If you have an interest in churches, bats, or both, I’d encourage you to get involved. The surveys are something that everyone can do, even if you are new to the world of bat surveys.” batsinchurches.org.uk

 

CMS launches lay evangelism training

A NEW project in Birmingham to inspire and train lay people to evangelise has been created jointly by the Church Mission Society (CMS), the United Reformed Church (URC), the Congregational Federation, and Seedbeds. The Newbigin Pioneering Hub, named after the theologian Lesslie Newbigin, who was a bishop in the Church of South India and later Moderator of the URC’s General Assembly, “aims to reach the 85 per cent of people who say they will never, or are highly unlikely to ever, go to church”. In September, its first leaders will begin studying for the CMS certificate in pioneering mission, which includes modular learning and practical ministry in the community. It will be led by a URC minister, the Revd Dr Ash Barker, who said on Tuesday: “There is an urgent need for both greater relevance to local communities and faithfulness to the gospel that pioneer leaders can provide.”

 

Tyneside baby bank appeals to replace heating

A CHURCH in North Tyneside, St John’s, Percy Main, is appealing for donations to replace its heating system so that it can continue to offer a “baby bank” of supplies to new parents. The North Shields Baby Bank has helped more than 400 families with items including nappies, wipes, clothing, and baby formula since it launched last year (News, 26 November 2021). The Vicar of St John’s, the Revd Lee Cleminson, said this week: “People are really struggling with energy prices, food prices, the cost of petrol, and all sorts of other expenses. . . Parents . . . have been overwhelmed by the generosity and good quality items.” He said: “The heating system is absolutely essential to the administering of the baby bank, otherwise clothes and other supplies will get damp and volunteers will not be able to work here.” justgiving.com/crowdfunding/leejames-cleminson-3

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