Ad Clerum – March 2014

Bishop_Gregory_Arms-in-colo.gifAd Clerum :
3edd o Fawrth 2014 March 3rd

Y Flwyddyn o Bererindod 2013-14 The Year of Pilgrimage
Dilynwch Fi, medd yr Arglwydd: Follow Me, says the Lord

Annwyl Gyfeillion,

Mae Gŵyl Dewi wedi dod ac wedi mynd unwaith eto a phenwythnos nesaf byddwn yn wynebu her y gêm yn erbyn Lloegr. Wrth gwrs, rydym yn dymuno’n dda i’r bechgyn! Gobeithiaf hefyd fod ein cenedlaetholdeb yn rhywbeth amgenach na chefnogi’r bechgyn yn y crysau coch (yn enwedig pan y meant yn wynebu’r bechgyn yn y crysau gwyn). Gobeithiaf ei fod yn cynnwys hefyd, meddwl am gyflwr ein cenedl, a’n bywyd cenedlaethol. Mae’r Ad Clerum yma yn cael ei gyhoeddi ar yr un amser ag adroddiad Comisiwn Silk a’i awgrymiadau ynglŷn â dyfodol datganoli. Dim yn unig hyn, ond rydym hefyd yn disgwyl y bydd yna adrefnu eang o lywodraeth leol yng Nghymru. Llawer i feddwl amdano: mae dyfodol ein cenedl yn y fantol. Dydy datganoli, yn fy marn i, ddim wedi bod yn llwyddiant ysgubol. Mae yna berygl ein bod yn dechrau llusgo ar ôl Lloegr ym meysydd Iechyd ac Addysg, ac ymddengys bod tueddiad i’r Cynulliad yng Nghymru ddiffinio ei hun yn erbyn San Steffan yn lle gweithio mewn partneriaeth i adeiladu’r dyfodol.

Hyderaf eich bod yn cymeryd sylw o beth sydd yn digwydd ym mywyd ein cenedl, yn gweddïo dros ein gwleidyddion (yn San Steffan ac yng Nghaerdydd) a hefyd yn lleol. ‘Rwyf yn gwerthfawrogi cysylltiad yr Esgobaeth efo gwleidyddion o bob plaid, a hefyd y deialog a gawn gyda hwy. Mae hyn yn bwysig i bawb ohonom. Gadewch i ni sicrhau hefyd bod llais ffydd yn cael ei glywed yng Nghymru. Dydw i ddim yn ofni Cymru amlddiwylliannol na Chymru aml-ffydd, ond mae ein hanes a’n presenoldeb a’n cenhadaeth, wedi ei ymddiried ynom gan Dduw, yn rhoi i ni’r hawl a’r cyfrifoldeb o gael gwrandawiad.

The Feast of David has come and gone once again, and next weekend we’re facing the challenge of the match against England.  Of course, good luck to our boys!  I hope, however, that our nationalism goes beyond supporting the boys in red (especially when they face the boys in white).  I hope that it goes on to a concern for the nation, and our national life.  This Ad Clerum will co-incide with the publication of the Second Report of the Silk Commission today, with its proposals on the future of devolution.  Not only that, but we’re being told to expect a large scale re-organisation of local government in Wales.  So there’s a lot to think about: the future of our nation hangs in the balance.  Devolution, in my opinion, has not been an unalloyed success.  There’s a danger that in Health and Education we are starting to lag behind England now, and there seems to be a tendency for the Assembly in Wales to define itself against Westminster rather than to be partners in building the future.

I trust that you are taking note of what is happening in national life, and praying for our politicians, at both national levels (Westminster and Cardiff) and at local level.  I appreciate the links that the diocese has with politicians of all parties, and the dialogue that we have with them.  It is something in which we should all be investing.  Let us ensure that the voice of faith is also heard in Wales.  I’m not afraid of a multi-cultural multi-faith Wales, but our history and our presence and our mission, entrusted to us by God, give us the right and the responsibility of being heard.


I would like to encourage as many as possible to be joining me every day during Lent at Morning and Evening Prayer, and especially at 1800hr every evening or the nearest suitable moment if possible to be praying corporately for our common life.

O Dduw ein teithiau, ‘rwyt yn ein galw, fel y gelwaist Abraham, i adael cysur a chynefin ac i deithio gyda thi mewn ffydd;
cawn ein bendithio gan y cwmni sydd yn ein cyfarfod ar y ffordd a chan syndod y gras annisgwyl sydd yn ein croesawu adref.
Helpa ni i ymddiried yn dy bresenoldeb di wrth deithio ac i wybod na all unrhyw beth ein gwahanu oddiwrth dy gariad, a welwn yng ngwyneb ffrind a dieithryn, ond yn fwyaf oll yn Iesu, ein ffordd.    Amen

God of our journeys, you call us, like Abraham, to leave the comfort of the familiar and to journey with you in faith;
you bless us with the company of others whom  we meet along the way, and surprise us with the unexpected grace that welcomes us home.
Help us to trust in your presence with us when we travel and know that nothing separates us from your love, shown to us in face of friend and stranger and above all in Jesus, our Way. Amen

I would also like to see this prayer in active use around the diocese in Lent – duplicated on our notice sheets, used in our services, entering the bloodstream of our corporate prayer life.  It would contribute, I believe, to our sense of belonging together, and our sense of seeking God’s guidance as the one on whom we depend for our diocesan life.

You can find the prayer online at

Please feel free to print copies of the prayer card and to use them as widely as possible.

Chrism Eucharist

I look forward to keeping this feast with you at 1100hr on Maundy Thursday in the Cathedral at the Eucharist for the Blessing of the Holy Oils together with our renewal of commitment to diaconal, priestly and episcopal service.  You are requested to robe in alb or surplice with white stole in the Translators’ Chapel and then take your seat in the nave by 1050hr.  As usual retired clergy, Readers and parishioners are particularly welcome to be with us.

Lunch will again be served afterwards to which everyone is warmly invited.  You will be asked to confirm numbers attending from your parish with your area dean beforehand and more directions will be provided in next month’s Ad Clerum.

Sunday, 4th May & the Year of Pilgrimage

As we approach the Feast Day of St Asaph once again, so we come to the conclusion of our Year of Pilgrimage.  My profound thanks go to Shirley Griffiths and all of the Pilgrimage Year Steering Group for all that they have co-ordinated in the life of the diocese.  It has been inspirational to see the way in which the Year has been adopted by parishes, deaneries and schools.

To mark the end of the year, there will be a major Service in the Cathedral, Sunday, 04 May at 1530hr, to which we are hoping all parishes and clergy will send representatives.  I should be grateful if you could ensure that this event is entered into your and parish diaries now.

Hwyl a Helo

Vera Lewis has indicated to me that she wishes to resign from her House for duty ministry at Henllan before the end of the year.  Vera has been a faithful servant of the diocese throughout her ministry, and has given generously over the last few years in this added service.  We wish her well on her second retirement!

Changes to the Permission to officiate list.
Trefor Davies is relinquishing his PTO, and PTO is being given to Richard Hughes, in Llanrhaeadr Ym Mochnant, Robert Parker, formerly of this diocese, and now living in Oswestry, and Alan Tiltman, now living in Rhosymedre.

Congratulations to Chris Potter and to Jenny, on the birth of a new grandson, Arthur, in the last few weeks.  We hope that the entire Potter clan continue to flourish.


The vacancies for a Team Rector in Rhos Cystennin, a Vicar for Gwersyllt and a Priest-in-Charge for Buckley are being advertised from today.  You will find adverts for all three posts in an appendix to this Ad Clerum, and full details and the appropriate application packs are available online:

Rhos Cystennin and Gwersyllt fall to the Diocesan Nomination Board.  Applications should be submitted Monday, 17 March, with interviews scheduled on Wednesday, 26 March.  The post at Buckley is a Bishop’s appointment and applications should be submitted by the end of the month.

You may also be interested to receive information concerning an external post:

Wales Homes for Veterans is an initiative of the Alabaré charity who currently provide housing support to male and female veterans who are homeless or facing homelessness and struggle with the transition into civilian life. Having secured funding from the Armed Forces Covenant (LIBOR) Fund, they are extending their established and highly successful supported housing service to Wales, including in Wrexham. A Chaplaincy Leader is needed to recruit and lead a team of Volunteer Chaplains to provide pastoral support to the vulnerable and marginalised with whom Alabaré works, together with the staff and volunteers who serve them. Building on work that has already started, the Chaplaincy leader will to continue to recruit Volunteers from a variety of Churches and then to provide the guidance and support they need to fulfil their role.  The post is 15 hours a week with a salary of £25,000 per annum, pro rata.   Alabare are also looking for Volunteer Chaplains for this service.  Please telephone 01722 344479 or email for an application pack quoting the Reference number 12.  Closing date Monday 24th March 2014.

Dates for your diary

Tuesday, 4 March    Visitation to St Asaph Deanery, Christ Church, Prestatyn, 1900hr
Monday, 17 March    Induction of Sue Huyton as Rector of the Bangor-Is-y-Coed Group of parishes and Commissioning as Mission Area Leader of Dee Valley at St Dunawd’s Church, Bangor-is-y-Coed, 1900hr.
Sunday, 23 March    Installation of Pam Powell, Quentin Bellamy and Kathy Collins as Canons in the course of Evensong, at the Cathedral, 1530hr
Tuesday, 25 March    Induction of Richard Hainsworth as Vicar of Northop, at SS Eurgain & Peter’s Church, Northop, 1900hr.
Tuesday, 1 April    Visitation lunch and meeting with Chapters of Dee Valley, Alyn & Wrexham deaneries, St Margaret’s Church Hall, Wrexham, 1300hr
Visitation to Dee Valley Deanery, St Mary’s Church, Chirk, 1900hr
Thursday, 17 April     Chrism Eucharist & Renewal of Ordination Vows at Cathedral, 1100hr
Saturday, 19 April    Easter Vigil and Diocesan Confirmation at the Cathedral, 1900hr
Thursday 1 May    St Asaph Retired Clergy Association meeting at the Church of St Martin of Tours, Llay, 14.00hr
Sunday, 4 May    To be kept as the Feast Day of St Asaph, and the culmination of the Year of Pilgrimage
Tuesday, 6 May        Visitation to Alyn Deanery, St Mary’s Church, Minera, 1900hr
Tuesday, 13 May:      CMD with the Revd. Dr Beatrice Brandon, Archbishops’ Advisor for the Healing Ministry – ‘The Ministry of Healing’.
Visitation to Wrexham Deanery, St Giles Church, Wrexham, 1900hr
Tuesday, 10 June    Visitation Lunch and meeting with Chapters of Denbigh & Dyffryn Clwyd deaneries at St Mary’s Church, Denbigh, 1300hr
Visitation to Denbigh Deanery, St Mary’s Church, Denbigh, 1900hr
Saturday, 14 June    Readers’ Day at Gresford, starting at 1100hr with the Eucharist.
Sunday, 15 June    Confirmation for Alyn Deanery, St Tudfil’s, Coedpoeth, 1500hr
Sunday, 22 June    Eucharist with Thanksgiving for Anniversaries of Ordination, Cathedral, 1100hr.
Saturday, 28 June    Petertide Ordination at Cathedral 1000hr
Sunday, 29 June    Confirmation for Dee Valley and Wrexham deaneries, St Giles Wrexham, 1500hr.
Wednesday, 2 July    Visitation to Dyffryn Clwyd Deanery, St Peter’s Church, Ruthin, 1900hr
Sunday, 6 July    Confirmation for Denbigh & Dyffryn Clwyd deaneries, St Peter’s Church, Ruthin, 1530hr
Tuesday, 9 – Friday, 12 September:  Residential Clergy Conference at St Anne’s College, Oxford – ‘Pressing on with the Gospel’.
Sunday, 5 October    General Confirmation at St Nicholas’ Church, Montgomery 1100hr
Saturday, 11 October     Diocesan Conference in the Llangollen Pavilion.
Sunday , 16 November    General Confirmation, St Matthew’s Church, Buckley 1530hr
Wednesday, 03 Dec     Diocesan Confirmation, Cathedral, 1830hr

Notes and Queries

Anniversaries in Ministry
On Sunday, 22 June I would like to invite those who will be celebrating a significant ordination anniversary during 2014 to join me for a special celebratory Eucharist at the Cathedral at 1100hr – anniversaries such as 25 years and the subsequent ‘0’ anniversaries thereafter.  If you have a special anniversary this year that you would like to celebrate with us on June 22nd then please contact my office at Esgobty by 19 May.

Bible Reading Fellowship (BRF)
The North Wales representative of BRF, Anne Jackson, recently came to meet with the Bishop’s staff and to talk about the range of material that BRF produce to aid Christians engage effectively with the scriptures.  There is a great deal of accessible material, which can be explored at, but Anne herself is available to come to talk to Church groups about BRF books and ministries.  She can be contacted at

Roger Brown
has published a monograph on Bishop Thomas Vowler Short, who served in the mid-nineteenth century.  A very interesting read (36 pages), copies are available from Roger at £2.50 each, post free of charge.

End Hunger Fast
No one should go hungry in Britain. More and more people are just one unexpected bill away from facing bare cupboards. This is a national and moral crisis and by pledging to join the fast on 04 April you will add your voice to the call
•    that the welfare system provides a robust last line of defence against hunger in Britain
•    that work pays enough for working people to properly provide for their families
•    that food markets function, promoting long term sustainable and healthy diets with no one profiteering off hunger in Britain

For more information please visit:

Fairtrade Province
Eighteen months ago, the Governing Body passed a Resolution supporting the aim of the Church in Wales becoming the first Province of the Anglican Communion to become a Fairtrade Province.  In order to do so, 70% of our parishes have to pass the resolution set out below.  So far, St Asaph has been doing fairly well on the sign up stakes, but Bangor has become the first diocese to pass the 70% threshold.  I am asking all parishes that have not passed this resolution to consider the resolution at their next PCC meeting, and I’ll ask the Area Deans to check up on progress.  If you don’t know whether you’ve passed the resolution or not, then you can pass it again.  If you passed it once for the Diocese to become a Fairtrade diocese, then I’m afraid that you have to pass it again to qualify for the current drive.

The resolution reads ……

This PCC commits itself/re-commits itself* to supporting the principles of Fair Trade.
In particular, we will:
1. Use Fairtrade tea and coffee at church events, and in all meetings for which we have  responsibility.
2. Try where possible to use other Fairtrade products such as sugar, chocolate, or fruit (where there is no locally-sourced alternative available).
3. Advertise our use of Fairtrade products, and encourage the use and sale of Fairtrade products locally.
4. Through the inclusion of prayer, worship and study on Fair Trade themes, develop  our witness in the area of global justice.
This commitment applies to the following churches for which we are responsible:
List name(s) of church(es)

Real Easter Egg
The Real Easter Egg is the only one which tells the Easter story, gives money to charity and is Fairtrade. This year, a cooperative in Bethlehem is making tens of thousands of olive wood crosses for a special edition of the Real Easter Egg. It is the first time a cross has featured as part of a mainstream Easter gift. The special edition egg is one of three new designs available, the other two being a Sharing Box – with 20 smaller eggs and 20 Easter story booklets in the box (an idea which came from churches themselves), and the blue boxed egg which comes with a 24 page Easter story book and some Chunky chocolate buttons.  You can read more at

I have six Easter eggs to give away to parishes that could use them as prizes in forthcoming fundraising events.  Please contact my office if you would like to claim one for your fundraiser.

Diocesan Train Pilgrimage, 5 May, 2014
Thank you to all those who have been in touch with Phil Atack in the last month to book places on this special train journey to Glasgow.  Please do make contact as soon as possible with Phil if you would like to come but have not yet booked your seat.   We will be delighted to have the company of the Mayor and Mayoress of St Asaph as they join us as civic representatives as we celebrate our common link with St Kentigern / Mungo with our visit this vibrant city on the Clyde.

Order of St Asaph
A reminder that nominations are now invited for the Order of St Asaph as we seek to recognise and honour the outstanding contribution of lay persons at diocesan level, particularly at an appropriate point on the completion of service in a particular way or in a particular role.
All members of the Teulu Asaff, whether clerical or lay, are encouraged to make nominations, which can also be submitted through any diocesan council or committee.  Nominations forms should be submitted to me at Esgobty by the end of April.  Application forms were circulated in the March ad Clerum and can be downloaded from:

Same Sex Marriages
Such marriages become legal on March 29th and I remind you that, in relation to the Church in Wales, solemnization of these remain illegal and clerics are not permitted to conduct them or to offer public Liturgies of Blessing, nor does the Church in Wales have an authorised rite for the blessing of same-sex partnerships.

South West Tanganyika
Please hold our link diocese in your prayers this month as they begin the process of electing a successor to John Simalenga.  On March 9th, all parishes are entitled to nominate the name of a priest who they feel would be worthy of election.  On 12th March, the Electoral Committee meet to submit a short list to the House of Bishops of the Province for final approval.  The election will be held on 8th August, and the Consecration is planned for 12th October.

Bishop’s Second Visitation
The completed Articles of Inquiry for the forthcoming Visitations to Dee Valley, Alyn and Wrexham deaneries should be returned to me at Esgobty no later than March 13th please.  The Registrar will shortly be sending out the Citation and papers for the Deaneries of Denbigh and Dyffryn Clwyd as I draw my cycle of Visitations to a close.   Details can also be accessed from the Visitation webpage:

I take this opportunity to wish you all well for your observation of the Holy Season of Lent, and I trust that your devotions will refresh and renew your faith.  I will also be praying for every blessing upon all Lent study courses, and prayer groups.  May it be a time when we grow as family and as disciples of Jesus Christ.

With every blessing,






Download the Ad Clerum in Word: Ad Clerum 140303



RECTOR for the Rectorial Benefice of RHOS-CYSTENNIN

Applications are warmly invited from serving clergy within the Diocese of St Asaph for the position of Rector in the Rectorial Benefice of Rhos-Cystennin.

We hope that you will:
•    Have the energy and vision, as an experienced priest, to make the church a transforming presence in the communities that it serves in line with the Church in Wales 2020 Vision
•    Be able to relate to families and young people as well as more traditional congregations
•    Be willing to work with stipendiary and lay colleagues: a team player who is able to delegate, encourage, nurture and facilitate, so building the ministry and gifts of others
•    Someone who will enable our congregations to become more spiritually aware, deepening their faith through preaching, teaching and innovative use of music, liturgy and worship

We can offer:
•    A warm welcome from  congregations committed to explore new ideas with you
•    A comfortable and well maintained five-bedroomed vicarage  in Llandudno
•    A supportive  group of colleagues within the Deanery and Archdeaconry
For an informal conversation regarding this role, please contact the Archdeacon of St Asaph, the Venerable Chris Potter, on 01352 720915 or by email

Applications should be received by Monday, 17 March 2014 and interviews will be held on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 at the Diocesan Office in St Asaph

VICAR for the parish of GWERSYLLT

We are seeking an inspiring and enabling priest who will work with and encourage lay and clergy colleagues in developing a vision to extend mission and ministry in this lively parish on the edge of Wrexham town.

Gwersyllt is a busy parish with a population of approximately 11,000. Holy Trinity Church is already an important focus for the community and the parish is keen to develop this role further in the future. The Parish of Gwersyllt is part of the Alyn Deanery where clergy and laity work together closely and effectively in mission and ministry.

For an informal conversation regarding this role, please contact the Archdeacon of Wrexham, the Venerable Bob Griffiths, on 01492 876152 or by email

Applications should be received by Monday, 17 March 2014 and interviews will be held on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 at the Diocesan Office in St Asaph

PRIEST-IN-CHARGE for the parish of BUCKLEY

We are seeking an inspiring and encouraging priest who will join us at this exciting time of change and development for our parish.  Our vision is to extend mission and ministry as part of our local Mission Area by building closer links with our neighbouring parishes and with our ecumenical partners. There is a hard-working and committed congregation that is looking forward to supporting your ministry.

Buckley is a lively parish with a population of approximately 6,000 that lies approximately 10 miles from both Chester and Wrexham. The parish has two churches, St Matthew’s and the Church of the Good Shepherd, and both are well maintained and in a good state of repair.

For an informal conversation regarding this role, please contact the Archdeacon of Wrexham, the Venerable Bob Griffiths, on 01492 876152 or by email

Applications should be received by Monday, 31 March 2014 and interviews will be held during April in St Asaph.

Further information and application forms for these posts can be obtained from:
Mrs Diane McCarthy, Secretary to the Board of Nomination,
Diocesan Office, High Street, St Asaph LL17 0RD
01745 532591
or from the diocesan website