June 2012

Ad Clerum :
6ed Mehefin 2012 June 6th
Noswyl Corpus Christi
The Eve of Corpus Christi

Take hold of the life that is truly life (cf. 1 Timothy 6.19)
Gafaelwch yn y bywyd sydd yn wir fywyd (1 Timotheus 6.19)

In this Ad Clerum…

• The New Archdeacon of Montgomery

• Ordination Details

• Presentation to John Thelwell

• Sexuality & Listening

• Bishop John Simalenga’s Visit

• Becoming a Generous People

• Anti-Corruption

• Covenant Sunday

• Vacancy in Towyn

Annwyl Gyfeillion,

We have just enjoyed four days of holiday thanks to Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee. I presume that your reactions may well vary according to your views of monarchy, but we cannot but admire the stamina of an 86 year old lady, who has stood for long periods of the last few days and seemed indefatigable. We also hold her spouse of 65 years in our prayers at a time when his incapacity must have hit hard.

But we should not forget that the Jubilee is at heart a biblical concept, not only a celebration of past achievements but a setting right of wrongs. The Queen has played her part is being a focus for reconciliation, as with such things as her State Visit to Eire, and before the partying of the weekend entirely fades from view, perhaps we should take the opportunity to orient it towards the future, taking stock of sixty years as an opportunity to settle old scores, not in the obvious sense of “getting even” but in the more biblical sense of writing off debt and offering forgiveness. May the Church always lead the way in being a forgiving community.

Thank you on two fronts. First, for the feedback which I have received on the Ad Clerum. All the representations back to me are to keep with the current style, but as matters can get overlooked, it has been suggested that I offer a little summary box of the things which may require your attention and response. I hope that it may become a helpful aid to decoding the Ad Clerum, and drawing your attention to any matters which may need further action by you.

Listening at CMD

Thank you also for what I believe was a very worthwhile listening exercise on sexuality at the CMD day. I had asked for patient and respectful listening, and I think that was what we got. There were moments of profound personal honesty, and also the courage to offer personal or difficult perspectives. I am extremely grateful to everyone who participated. The different perspectives revealed the diversity of opinion that we have as a Church on this issue, but it also revealed the complexity of the matter – that any easy way forward is not going to be straightforward.

I believe that there remains work to be done, but that the next step is for us to do some work on the theological foundations from which we derive our understanding of God’s will on this matter. I am asking Alan Tiltman to organise a voluntary CMD event at which we will invite speakers to reflect on Scripture, Tradition, Reason and Experience and how they inform this debate. To assist Alan in making arrangements, please let him know if you are interested in participating.


I hope that you will already have the Petertide Ordination on 30th June in your diaries. We have five priest candidates: Phil Bettinson, Gwenda Cooper, Jane James, Alex Mayes, and Kate Tiltman, and two deacon candidates: Elaine Atack and Lesley Cooke. Please hold all these candidates in your prayers, and please also remember them in the public liturgies of your parishes. It would be good to know that they are upheld in prayer throughout the diocese as they prepare for this new chapter of ministry.

The service will begin at 1000hr. It would be good if clergy were present. Clergy and Readers are asked to robe in the Dean’s Library by 0940hr in alb or surplice with white stole. The Cathedral Chapter will be robing in the North Transept. Bishop John Simalenga will be joining me in the Ordination, and at the end of the service, we will be making a formal presentation of thanks to John and Meryl Thelwell, as John takes retirement. It will be his last day and the thirty-eighth anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. All the more reason to be present.

Visit of Bishop John & Martha Simalenga

The Bishop of our link diocese, Bishop John Simalenga and his wife, Martha, will be with us from Sunday, 24th June, until Thursday, 5th July. The outline programme for their visit is attached, and it would be good if as many as possible, both clerical and lay, took one opportunity to be present with them at an event, and to greet them.

Becoming a Generous People

I seriously commend to you the ‘Becoming a Generous People’ programme as it seeks to encourage us to be people who are generous, giving, visionary and thoughtful. The programme, which is designed to last in parishes over a number of years, will be providing resources to help us do this. I encourage you to take this seriously and to accept the invitation extended by Tracey White at our last CMD session to find out more. You are requested to attend with at least two lay people per parish at one of the following venues:

• 10 July – St Margaret’s Church Hall, Chester Road, Wrexham LL11 2SH at 1900hr
• 17 September – Gregynog Hall, Tregynon, Nr Newtown SY16 3PW at 1030hr
• 25 September – St Peter’s Church, Rosehill, Holywell CH8 7TL at 1900hr

and I really hope that we will all take this opportunity. Finance is truly one of the major challenges facing us as a diocese, but although it embraces finance, this programme takes a long hard look at our theology of generosity.

Anti-Fraud, Bribery, Corruption & Malpractice Policy
(incorporating ‘Whistle-blowing’):

Please find attached a template for a parish policy in connection with Anti-Fraud, Bribery, Corruption & Malpractice Policy (Incorporating ‘Whistle-blowing’). It doesn’t immediately strike one as the most urgent of issues, but it is actually an area about which it is important to be aware of best practice, and to ensure that were uninformed accusations to be made, you and your parish officers can be shown to be above suspicion. All churches are therefore now required to have a policy in place to comply with Charity Commission guidance on good practice.

The template attached has been helpfully issued by the Church in Wales at Cathedral Road. If there any questions relating to it, please direct them to that office on tel: 029 2034 8200. All that is required is that you fill in each blank space with the name of your parish find a place where a copy can be on display. I would also suggest that you table this item for your next PCC meeting, adopt the policy formally and give a copy to each member of your PCC. Matters of transparency in procedure and policy are more important than ever, and to ensure maximum protection in the event of any dispute, latest good practice should be followed and due diligence taken.

Hwyl a Helo

I am very pleased to announce that the new Archdeacon of Montgomery will be the Revd Dr Peter Pike, Vicar of Bridlington. Peter is married to Deborah, and they have three grown-up children, and they will be moving into the diocese in the Summer. Peter originally trained as a special education teacher, in which he worked for eight years, before being ordained in the Diocese of Blackburn. He has worked in various rural parishes in the north of England both in Blackburn diocese and in York, and been Area Dean in the two dioceses. His induction to Berriew will take place on Monday 10 September at 1900hr at St Beuno’s Church, Berriew and his installation as Archdeacon will take place during Choral Evensong in the Cathedral on Monday 01 October at 1800hr.

I am grateful for those who assisted in the process of interview and evaluation, and for those who applied for the post. We had ten very good applications, including a number from within the diocese, although very few from elsewhere in Wales.

Philip Clarke has returned to St Asaph after a sojourn in the diocese of Carlisle. Eric Owen, whom many of you will know, has taken up my Permission to Officiate. We welcome them both in these various ways back into public ministry in the Teulu Asaff.

We say a fond farewell and big thank to Ursula Jones, as she retires as Dewi Thomas’ assistant in the Diocesan Office. Ursula is ever patient, and has helped to look after us. We will miss her help, but are glad to welcome Rachel Cutler.

Dates for the Diary

10 June Covenant Sunday. Please find attached information about Covenant Sunday which is on Sunday 10 June produced by the Commission for the Covenanted Churches in Wales including a Covenant Sunday Collect and Preface for the Eucharist. You can download it in Welsh or English.

17 June 1100hr Choral Eucharist to celebrate Anniversaries of Ordination, at the Cathedral. Any nominations for clergy to participate should be submitted to Michael here at Esgobty.

24 June 1030hr Anglican-Methodist Joint Confirmation for Rydal Penrhos School, at St John’s Uniting Church, Colwyn Bay.

30 June 1000hr Petertide Ordination in the Cathedral. All clergy are requested to make this a priority to attend the ordination as we support the five new priests and two new deacons who, God willing, will be ordained that day. The retreat conductor and preacher will be the Revd Canon Kenneth Kearon, Secretary General of the Anglican Communion. The Ordination Service will also be a fitting opportunity for the Teulu Asaff to say farewell to John and Meryl Thelwell on what will be John’s final day in stipendiary ministry.

01 July 1500hr Confirmation at St Giles’ Church, Wrexham.

02 July Licensing of Neil Kelly as Assistant Curate of Mold and Stephen Sheridan as Assistant Curate of Shotton, at Esgobty.

08 July Sea Sunday. I warmly commend to you the work of the Mission to Seafarers and remind you that Sea Sunday falls on 8th July this year. The theme for this year is ‘Isolation’ as we remember ships’ crews far away from home for up to eighteen months at a time, and also the dangers they encounter including becoming victims of piracy. Resources are available at www.seasunday.org for your use to help us pray and support this important Anglican maritime ministry. I note in passing the sudden death of a good friend, Tom Heffer, who was General Secretary of the Mission to Seafarers. Tom was a young cleric of huge talent with a young family, who suffered heart failure following a car accident. In praying for the charity which he successfully led, please also remember in your prayers Tom, his wife and children.

10 July 1900hr : Becoming A Generous People. The Provincial roadshow arrives in St Margaret’s Church Hall, Chester Road, Wrexham LL11 2SH

16 July 1900hr: Licensing of the Revd Godfrey Chigumira as Team Vicar in the Rectorial Benefice of Rhos Cystennin and the Rededication of St. Michael’s Church, Llandudno Junction at St. Michael’s Church.

5 Septr 1800hr: Festal Evensong in the Cathedral to celebrate the visit of the International Commission for Anglican – Orthodox Theological Dialogue. The 2012 meeting of the ICAOTD is planned for this week to take place in the diocese, and we are planning to host a Sung Evensong for all the Anglican and Orthodox members of the Commission – an array of Metropolitans, Archbishops, Bishops and theologians, who conduct the conversations between our two traditions. It should be a great occasion of celebration, and a good supporting cast of diocesan clergy and laity would be very welcome, especially if you are interested in all things Orthodox.

17 Septr 1030hr: Becoming a Generous People arrives at Gregynog Hall, Tregynon, Newtown SY16 3PW

25 Septr CMD Day. The focus of the day will be Christian Initiation, and cover approaches to Baptism, Confirmation and First Holy Communion. There are a number of pastoral, liturgical and theological aspects to wrestle with on all these topics, and Bishop Robert Paterson, Bishop of Sodor & Man, will be leading us through the intricacies, and setting out some signposts to most effective practice. The day will begin at 1000hr and finish by 1530hr as usual, and include a synodical session in the last hour.

25 Septr The final chance to attend Becoming a Generous People in the diocese at St Peter’s Church, Rosehill, Holywell CH8 7TL at 1900hr

6 Octr Diocesan Conference, in the Llangollen Eisteddfod Pavilion.

Notes and Queries

Multi Parish Ministry Support Group
As mentioned at the last CMD day, any incumbent, with 3 or more parishes, who is interested in being part of an ongoing Multi Parish Ministry Support Group, is invited to come to a meeting at Gladstone’s Library, Hawarden on Tuesday 26 June at 9.30 for 10.00 until 12.00 followed by lunch. The meeting and lunch will be met from the CMD budget. Anyone wishing to attend should contact Adrian Copping by email or 01352 810936
by Monday 18th June.

Properties available
The Bangor Diocesan Housing Association for Retired Clergy currently has three properties which are available for occupation. The rules of the Bangor Diocesan Housing Association state that the properties are available for occupation by clergy who have served in The Church in Wales or dependents in necessitous circumstances. Please find attached details of the properties.

The Church in Wales allows me to approve up to three sabbaticals per annum. Those who wish to make an application for a sabbatical in 2014 can now request an application form from my chaplain. Completed applications need to be submitted to me by the end of March 2013.

The Samaritans are now inviting applications to join the Samaritans Cymru Board especially from people with skills related to mental health policy or research and those with skills related to fundraising. 2012 is an important year for Samaritans in Wales as they launch their first ever Samaritans Cymru Board which will drive the strategic work of Samaritans in Wales over coming years. An Application Form and Role Description can be downloaded here.
Alternatively please email or call 029 20 222008. Completed applications should be sent to scb@samaritans.org by Monday 11 June. Interviews will take place on Saturday 7 July 2012.

Society of Catholic Priests
SCP is holding a day conference on Wednesday 3 October at Southwark Cathedral entitled ‘Loves Labour: Catholic Vocations, Catholic Evangelism’. For more information please contact Father Johannes Arens by email or 0116 261 5364.

As Stephen Lowe and Clive Southerton’s period of transition ministry comes to a close, we are looking for a strong pioneer ministry to succeed to the renewal ministry undertaken in Towyn. The plan is to form a cluster of parishes co-operating: Towyn with Abergele and St George and Llanddulas and Llysfaen. If you are interested, or know a good candidate, then please speak to Archdeacon Chris.

With my warmest regards for your ongoing ministry and service,

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