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UK news in brief

17 June 2022

Chichester Cathedral

Bower: a floral display on the Arundel Tomb in Chichester Cathedral during its biennial four-day Festival of Flowers, which finished on Saturday

Bower: a floral display on the Arundel Tomb in Chichester Cathedral during its biennial four-day Festival of Flowers, which finished on Saturday


Support Ukraine this harvest, charity asks churches

THE Christian charity Transform Europe Network, based in Bristol, is appealing to churches and schools to hold a one-off fund-raising event for its “Harvest For The Hungry” appeal to support refugees from Ukraine. For the past 30 years, the Network has sent £2.5-million-worth of food parcels and hot meals to partner charities and churches in Eastern Europe. Its chief executive, James Vaughton, explained: “This harvest (September), we want to ensure that, as well as meeting our existing partner’s needs to their local communities, we can provide food aid, so refugees are well fed this autumn and winter.” ten-uk.org


Dean Kelly-Moore to chair Cathedrals Association

THE next chair of the Association of English Cathedrals is the Dean of St Albans, the Very Revd Jo Kelly-Moore, it was announced on Monday. She succeeds the Dean of Lichfield, the Very Revd Adrian Dorber, who stepped down at the end of the National Cathedrals Conference last month (Podcast, 20 May). Dean Kelly-Moore, a former solicitor, who was the Dean of Holy Trinity Cathedral, Auckland, in New Zealand from 2010 to 2017, said: “I hope that, together as the AEC, we can continue to support the cathedrals in this land to be best equipped for our ministry today.”


Archbishop backs campaign to save Channel 4

THE Archbishop of York is among the supporters of a new campaign to prevent the privatisation of Channel 4, whose headquarters are in Leeds. He cites the effects on creative opportunity and levelling-up investment for the North, The Yorkshire Post reports. Other faith leaders have joined production companies and a raft of celebrities to launch the campaign “Channel 4 Ain’t Broke”. The Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Revd Nick Baines, told the paper on Monday: “The plan to sell off Channel 4 is ideologically driven and therefore short-sighted and wrong. Channel 4 is the levelling up broadcaster, it’s good for our region. It ain’t broke — so the Government shouldn’t be trying to fix it.” The campaign is coordinated by We Own It, which argues that Channel 4 delivers £1 billion to the UK economy, returns profits of £74 million, and supports more than 10,000 jobs.


A Rocha UK appoints Eco Church officer for the north

THE Christian conservation charity A Rocha UK has created a new role of Eco Church officer for the North of England, appointing Lucy Foster, a conservationist and curate from Kendal, to the post. The charity plans to widen its reach in the North by helping more churches to join its Eco Church network. The post is supported by a three-year grant from the Benefact Trust, formerly AllChurches Trust. The church relations manager at A Rocha UK, Helen Stephens, said: “We are keen to promote and embed Eco Church regionally as well as nationally, recognising that there are unique challenges in different parts of the country.”


Stalking protection order imposed on pensioner

A PENSIONER has been banned from a church poetry group after harassing a female member. He had sent her 60 letters and other items over 18 months from February 2020, Uxbridge Magistrates Court heard. Edmund O’Brien, 76, from Ickenham, West London, was charged and, in January, convicted both of harassment and of breaching his conditions of bail after he followed the woman as she walked her dog and peeped at her from behind the pillars of St John the Baptist, Uxbridge, while she attended a poetry group. The District Judge Deborah Wright said: “The vicar spoke to him and advised him not to attend the church.” She also issued a stalking protection order that bans him from the church while the poetry group takes place.


Change of name for Barnabas

THE Barnabas Fund has changed its name to Barnabas Aid and opened a new warehouse in Swindon from which it will send supplies, including food, medicine, and blankets, directly to support persecuted Christians around the world. It has already sent 350 tonnes of aid to churches in and around Ukraine. The warehouse has been open for several weeks but was dedicated by Lord Carey, with Lord Reading, who chairs the trustees, on Saturday, attended by 200 supporters and staff.


Bishop to judge Jubilee poetry competition

THE Jubilee Literary Society in Ely diocese has opened a new poetry competition in honour of the Platinum Jubilee and to raise funds for the 900-year-old village church of St Margaret of Antioch, Wereham, in Norfolk. The Bishop of Huntingdon, Dr Dagmar Winter, is among the judges. Entrants (aged 16 and over) are invited to submit poems on the theme “Reflections: Life in the New Elizabethan Age”, or a Jubilee-related subject, by 29 July. Full details and entry forms are available online. www.jubilee-litsoc.org

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