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Thursday, 30 May 2013
Since last Friday, all computers, servers and telephones in Church House, Westminster, have been completely shut down. This has meant that the Europe Diocesan Office and my own office have been left with extremely limited capacity to respond to any messages or emails. (We have been able to get some messages in and out through our mobile telephones). It is not possible to access any documents or work stored on the servers.
Needless to say, this is an extremely frustrating situation, given that next week we are all in Cologne for the inside of a week at Diocesan Synod! Nerves are frayed, understandably. Meanwhile, the Diocesan Finance Officer, Mr Nick Wraight, is offering his colleagues comforting cups of tea. A classic English solution in times of hardship.
The IT department of Church House is working on this systems meltdown. We sincerely hope to be back to full operation by the end of today. We apologise for any delay in correspondence or in matters related to the work of the Diocesan Office or my office.
Monday, 27 May 2013
On 27th May, fifty two adults and thirteen young people of the Greater Athens Anglican Chaplaincy came together for a quiet day at the Uniate Convent of I Pammakapistos in the northern suburbs of Athens. We can certainly appreciate that with the upheavals in Greece, a time for prayer and reflection together was much appreciated. The Revd Canon Malcolm Bradshaw, the chaplain of Greater Athens reported that the weather was perfect, the grounds expansive, facilities excellent and the hospitality given by this small religious community was extraordinary. Sr. Frances Dominica of Helen and Douglas House led the Quiet Day. Drawing from her long experience within the Hospice movement she spoke on ‘Me’, ‘You’ and ‘God’. Both the tragedy and the joy in life were touched upon as well as living with unanswerable questions and the mystery of God.
The worship for the day was based on the shape of the Eucharist. It was closely inter-related with the theme of each session. Parallel to the sessions for the adults was a lively programme of art, story-telling and games for young people all built around the story of Moses. The young people gave a short presentation at the end of the Quiet day. There was a unanimous call for another such day next year.
Sunday, 26 May 2013
|Candidates renew their baptismal vows|
Great Feasts of the Christian calendar might get slightly displaced in Monaco if they happen to fall on the weekend of the Formula One Grand Prix. Road closures on Sunday morning mean that it is very difficult for people to get to Church. The main Sunday liturgy is thus celebrated on Saturday evening.
This year it was the Feast of the Holy Trinity which had to be "anticipated" on Saturday night. But it was still a major and joyful celebration which this year included confirmation of two members of St Paul's Monaco, and one from the neighbouring parish of St Michael's, Beaulieu. Fr Walter Raymond OGS, of St Paul's was joined by Fr Philip Robinson, the locum priest at St Michael's, in presenting candidates for the Apostolic Rite of Confirmation.
Thursday, 23 May 2013
|Doreen Cage, John Barker, Richard Gardiner, Matthias Grebe|
Sacred Order of Deacon
Sacred Order of Priest
|The Revd Dr Mary Styles, The Revd Dana English|
Wednesday, 22 May 2013
|Archdeacon Patrick Curran|
|Dr Harold Chipman, Mr Fred Grüber|
Tuesday, 21 May 2013
Friday, 17 May 2013
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the Coronation of Her Majesty the Queen who was crowned in the ancient ceremony which was held in Westminster Abbey on Tuesday 2 June 1953. Churches in the Diocese in Europe may want to mark the anniversary at services on Sunday 2 June. There will be a service from Westminster Abbey televised on BBC on Tuesday 4 June at 11.00 am British Summer Time.
The following prayer, which has the Queen’s approval, will be incorporated in the Service of Thanksgiving in the Abbey on 4 June. The Archbishops of Canterbury and York have commended it for use throughout the Church of England. It is available in both traditional and modern language, and I commend it for use in congregations of this diocese. Some local adaptation may be required in countries which are clearly outside the realm of England. It could be as simple as omitting the words "of our Sovereign Lady" before "Queen Elizabeth".
who through anointing with the oil of gladness at the hands of priests and prophets
dost strengthen thy chosen servants with the gifts of thy Holy Spirit:
be pleased to accept our joyful praise as with united voice
we give thanks for the long and glorious reign
of our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth;
and to receive our humble prayer that, by renewing thy blessings,
thou wilt pour upon her thy choicest gifts,
and upon all thy people the spirit of humility and service,
shown forth in the life and death of him who is the anointed King of all,
our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
at the hands of priests and prophets
you anoint your chosen servants with the oil of gladness
and strengthen them with the gifts of your Holy Spirit:
accept our joyful praise as with united voice
we give thanks for the long and glorious reign
of our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth.
Renewing your blessings, pour on her your choicest gifts,
and on all your people the spirit of humility and mutual service
shown in the life and death of him who is the anointed King of all,
our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
© Westminster Abbey 2013
Other liturgical resources to mark this anniversary can be found here.
Wednesday, 15 May 2013
Readers (that is Licensed Lay Ministers) in this Diocese in Europe, after selection for this ministry, train for approximately three years, studying various aspects of theology and biblical studies through St John's College, Nottingham. There is an additional module which the Director of Training, the Revd Canon Ulla Monberg, has instituted this year, on Anglicanism. This module will be run by the diocese itself and will be a residential weekend of lectures and discussion followed by an essay. The first Anglicanism module was held for 12 trainee Readers last weekend in St Columba's House, Woking.
|Director of Training, Canon Ulla Monberg|
|Senior Tutor and Advisor for Reader Training, the Revd Elaine Labourel|
|Deacon Frances Hiller leads session on Anglican Hymnody|
|Aiden Hargreaves-Smith, Diocesan Registrar instructs on Canon Law|
Saturday, 11 May 2013
On Tuesday 30th April Fr Peter Ford was licensed to serve in St James Porto by the Ven David Sutch, Archdeacon of Gibraltar in the presence of Bishop José Jorge Pina Cabral, the recently consecrated Bishop in the Lusitanian Church in Portugal, Fr Nigel Stimpson from Lisbon, Fr Bob Bates from the Algarve, Fr Michael Bullock OGS, formerly of Lisbon and Judith Murray, a Reader in Training, supported by Terry Weineck and Ian Sinclair, the Churchwardens.
St James's Porto can trace its history back to 1671. The parish website is here. We welcome Fr Peter to this new responsibility in this historic parish.
Thursday, 9 May 2013
|The Very Revd John Arnold, centre, with Fr Matthew Jones|
The Church of St Thomas Becket in Hamburg welcomed as its guest preacher at its Sunday Eucharist on 5 May, the former Dean of Durham, the Very Revd John Arnold. This Eucharist which celebrating the feast of Saints Philip and James, concluded the parish's extensive involvement over the days of Kirchentag in Hamburg and it was fitting that such a prominent ecumenist and distinguished European Churchman should be the preacher. Dr Arnold was in fact, one of the drafters of the Meissen Common Statement. He has also served as the President of the Conference of European Churches, and even had a hand in shaping our diocese at the time of the preparation of the Diocese in Europe Measure in 1980!
The Chaplain of St Thomas Becket, the Revd Matthew Jones, informed the congregation that over 1100 people had attended services at St Thomas's over the 4 days of Kirchentag, and many more people visited the church which was open for prayer each day.
It had been a busy time for parishioners, many of who helped as volunteers at the Kirchentag stalls for the Council of Anglican-Episcopal Churches in Germany (CAECG), and the Anglican-Lutheran Society. The parish, which marked 400 years last year with an active programme of celebration, now begins some major external works on the building itself, involving painting, new lighting and other improvements which will make our Church much more visible and identifiable in this great city. The website of St Thomas Becket is here.
Wednesday, 8 May 2013
The Revd Canon Janet Heil, the Chaplain of St Edmund's Oslo, is the parish priest of an international congregation in the Norwegian capital. At a recent parish visit on 29 April, I confirmed members that she had prepared from Kenya, Nigeria, Norway, and the USA. At a Church Council meeting I met other members from Zambia, South Africa, and even England! Worship at St Edmund's is in English, of course, but Canon Heil has also learnt Norwegian which does help our relations with our sister Church of Norway.
Canon Heil also oversees the work of daughter churches and their resident priests in Stavanger, Bergen and Trondheim.
Tuesday, 7 May 2013
|Bishop Weber in St Thomas Becket Church|
This year the Meissen service at the Hamburg Kirchentag was held in St Thomas Becket Church, our Anglican Parish in the city. Bishop Nick Baines of Bradford, the Anglican Co-Chairman of the Meissen Commission, presided. His EKD counterpart, Bishop Professor Friedrich Weber of Braunschweig was the preacher. St Thomas Becket parishioners provided a warm reception for the visitors after the packed service.
Monday, 6 May 2013
|Archdeacon Jonathan LLoyd with St Thomas Becket Volunteer at Kirchentag|
|Angela Merkel and Helen Clark|
I also attended an interesting panel discussion with the Revd Dr Olav Fyske Tveit, the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches and Archbishop Robert Zollitsch of Freiburg (who is also the President of the German Roman Catholic Bishops' Conference). The theme was Pope Francis and what he might bring to ecumenical life. Both the WCC leader and the Roman Catholic Archbishop were very optimistic about the ecumenical leadership of the Pope, particularly in a call for Christians to lead a more simple life, demonstrated in his own ministry to date. The hall was filled with 2000 mostly German Protestants, and they had some pointed questions for Archbishop Zollitsch, about the role of women and the future of ecumenical cooperation in Germany. The Archbishop was very candid in his responses. He said he was personally in favour of the ordination of women to the diaconate and was actively promoting a study of this issue. He also said, to the delight of the audience, that he recognised the German Protestant Church (EKD) as a church!
Over 130,000 people registered to be part of Kirchentag, with about 4,000 international visitors, bringing an atmosphere of celebration and Christian joy throughout the city. The Archdeacon of Germany and Northern Europe entered fully into that spirit!
Thursday, 2 May 2013
From time to time I spotlight a current vacancy for a priest in the diocese. There is one very interesting post which is currently open: the priest-in-charge of Emmanuel Church, Warsaw. The Church of England has a fascinating and long history in Poland, going back to embassy chaplains in the 16th century. After the ravages of WWII, for many years the communist regime resisted recognition of our historic work. The present congregation was reborn in 1995 and the Anglican Church in Poland is now a legally recognised Church.
This is a house-for-duty post, in a growing parish in an exciting and fast‐moving city at the heart of Europe. The congregation is international, with about 60 on the electoral roll, including citizens of the UK, USA, Nigeria, Australia and Poland. There are two honorary assistant priests with Permission to Officiate who will work under the priest-in-charge. Services are in English.
The priest's residence is a spacious four‐room apartment, centrally located and well served by trams and buses. This is an ideal post for someone with vision to grow a parish, harnessing the enthusiasm of a committed congregation, and to be part of the most exciting diocese in the Anglican Communion!
For more information about this post, please contact our Appointments Secretary, Catherine Jackson.
Wednesday, 1 May 2013
Sea Sunday is 14 July this year, and the Mission to Seafarers has prepared resources that will be useful for our parishes who wish to mark this day.
The Mission to Seafarers is one of the mission agencies of the Church of England which is active in this Diocese in Europe. There are port chaplains based in Gibraltar, Antwerp, Vlissingen, Rotterdam, Odessa and Dunkirk and honorary chaplains and ecumenical cooperation with other seafarers missions in many other places in addition. The Mission around the world serves the over 1.3 million seafarers, whose work is hard, often dangerous and involves long periods of isolation from their families.
The Sea Sunday pack is available for download from the Mission to Seafarers website. There are resources for liturgically use on 14 July, sermon notes and material suitable for children. The pack is available here: www.seasunday.org.