Bishop’s Ad Clerum – October 2014

Unlocking our potential bilingual logoAd Clerum :
1af o Hydref 2014 October 1st

Bydd wrol a dewr iawn! (Josua 1.7)
Be strong and very courageous! (Joshua 1.7)

Annwyl Gyfeillion,

Hwyl a Helo

We will be giving a formal farewell to Archdeacon Chris Potter at the Diocesan Conference on Saturday, October 11th. Chris has served this diocese with distinction in two of its highest offices, as Dean (2001-11) and Archdeacon of St Asaph (from 2011). To both these positions he has brought flair and creativity, and we wish him and Jenny every happiness now in retirement in Llangollen.

I have previously announced the appointment of Canon John Lomas as the new Archdeacon of St Asaph. The date for John’s installation as Archdeacon has now been fixed for Monday, 1st December in the course of Evensong in the Cathedral at 1800hrs. I hope that a good many of us, particularly those of the Archdeaconry of St Asaph, can be there to support him.

I am delighted to welcome Jonathan Smith as the Mission Area Leader for the new Wrexham Mission Area. Jonathan will take up this ministry as John completes his twelve month transition ministry in Wrexham at the end of the year. With Jonathan’s Induction into this new role, the old Wrexham Rectorial Benefice will be dissolved, and the new Mission Area created. The date for Jonathan’s induction in Wrexham has been set for Thursday, 8th January in St Giles.

With the retirements of Kathy Collins, Bernard Thomas and Peter Wykes, all three honorary canonries have become vacant, and I have nominated, Adrian Copping, Ian Day and Trish Owens to succeed to these positions. As you know, I use the honorary canonries to mark long service to the diocese, or service which cannot normally be recognized by appointment as a cursal canon.

Adrian has been in turn Area Dean in Bangor and Mold deaneries, and is giving positive leadership to Mold in this time of transition. Ian has served the diocese faithfully for 39 years, including as Area Dean of Mold, and edits the Diocesan Intercessions leaflet. Trish is an outstanding example of NSM ministry, and currently serves on the Governing Body of the Church in Wales. They will all be installed in the Cathedral at Evensong on Monday, 10th November, at 1800hr. I am sure that they would welcome the support, not only of chapter, but of all their friends and colleagues among the clergy.

John Bernard Jones has given me notice that he intends to retire at the end of the year. John has served the Nercwys and Treuddyn parishes with faithfulness since 1991 including a stint as Area Dean of Mold. Lloyd Hughes has also indicated that he now wishes to retire and we thank him for his faithful and much appreciated ministry in Caerwys and Bodfari.

Chris and Lloyd have received formally my Permission to Officiate, as have Bernard Thomas and Carol Evans, both having crossed the formal border to retired bliss in recent days.

Rome Study Pilgrimage, February 2015

I am planning a Study Pilgrimage to Rome between Monday, 2nd February and Friday, 6th February next year. The Pilgrimage is intended for any interested member of the diocese, but primarily for those in licensed ministry.

The provisional programme is to travel out to Rome on the Monday, to visit some of the earliest Christian sites on the Tuesday, including the Scavi, or excavations under St Peter’s, the Colosseum and the Basilica of St Clement’s, an extraordinary church built over the remains of an ancient Mithraic Temple. We will attend the General Audience with Pope Francis on the Wednesday, and visit the Anglican Centre in Rome, and then tour the sites of renaissance Christianity on the Thursday, including St Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican museums and some of the other major sites. I hope also to include visits to the Sant Egidio Community, and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. There will also be times of prayer, worship and study, and free time and a chance to visit the ecclesiastical suppliers of Rome, and other places.

We will be accommodated in the Domus Internationalis Paulus VI, in en suite accommodation provided for visiting clergy by the Vatican at the heart of the historical centre of Rome near the Pantheon. Flights will be to and from Manchester. The cost of providing the accommodation and flights will amount to c.£570, and if we include a generous allowance for all expenditure including meals, entrance fees, and transfers I estimate that the total cost should amount to not more than £625.

I am pleased to say, however, that the Isla Johnston Trust has agreed to underwrite the participation of up to twenty clergy or licensed ministers of the diocese with a grant of £500 each, and, for those clergy who have not yet applied for another purpose, a clergy allocation grant (£200) is also available. Under new rules, even lay ministers and others may apply for an allocation grant in 2015. This should make the visit very affordable.

When I originally floated this idea in an Ad Clerum a little while back, a number of people registered an interest. Could they now confirm if they wish to participate in the pilgrimage, and could any other interested parties contact Ian Day by email as soon as possible to register their wish to participate? Places are limited, and early booking is advised. I attach a booking form. A deposit of £100 is payable when booking. Grants will be paid directly to pilgrims on receipt of applications. Ian will supply the necessary forms on registration.

CMD & Training Together

There are still some spaces left on the courses by the Province run by QA training, all coming up soon at the Ramada Hotel in Wrexham. The information can be accessed here. The dates are:

Tuesday, 14 Octr Making Meetings Work, 0930hr – 1630hr (coffee available from 9am)
Friday, 17 Octr Leading Successful Change, 0915hr – 1600hr (coffee available from 9am)
Monday, 1 Decr Leading Successful Change, 0930hr- 1630hr (coffee available from 9am)

The courses are open to lay leaders as well as clergy, and have been laid on partly in response to requests generated in Clergy Reviews. Please contact Manon on 01492 516728 or to book a place. Names for all courses need to be in 12 days beforehand so it is important to book as soon as possible. There is also a cap on each course of 10 places each.

There are also two CMD days held before the end of the year. They need to be booked through Sian Connelly at the Diocesan Office :

  • Tuesday, 21 Octr Doing Church Differently Fresh Expressions, Church in a Circle and other ideas with trainers Guy Elsmore and Martin Batchelor at the Beaufort Park Hotel, Mold.
  • Tuesday, 11 Novr How to deal with conflict with trainers David Miller and Gaynor Jones, 1000hr – 1600hr at Gladstone’s Library.

We are looking forward to launching the new Training Together Prospectus at the Diocesan Conference. There you will find details of all of the different courses on offer throughout 2015 from ministry skills and theology to practical training. It is expected that all clergy will choose a minimum of two courses to attend. Please also bear in mind that the Province will be running mandatory Safeguarding Training for clergy in 2015 (one of which can be counted towards your allocation of 2 if you wish).


There are three vacancies for which we are looking for the right priest at the moment:

  • House-for-Duty appointment in Llansanffraid Glan Conwy in the Llanrwst Group, working alongside Sarah Hildreth. This is still being advertised, and if you know anyone who could be interested in this role, then please contact the new Archdeacon of St Asaph, John Lomas.
  • Vicar of Guilsfield, Buttington and Pool Quay in the Archdeaconry of Montgomery. This is a re-advertisement, and will appear in the Church Times later this month. Please speak to Archdeacon Peter if you wish to show an interest, and make a recommendation.
  • Transition Missioner with Vicar of Bwlchgwyn and Brymbo. This is a new appointment, and is being advertised within the diocese. The post is being developed from the role which John Lomas has undertaken, and will have more of an orientation towards assisting the diocese with “Unlocking our Potential” and 2020 Vision. It is seen as 60% diocesan and 40% parish.  A full information pack is available from Esgobty.

Dates for your diary


Wednesday, 1 Octr Retired Clergy Association Eucharist & lunch, St Asaph, 1130hr
Sunday, 5 Octr Confirmation at St Aelhaiarn’s Church, Guilsfield, 1100hr
Saturday, 11 Octr Diocesan Conference in the Llangollen Pavilion 1030hr-1700hr


Monday, 10 Novr Installation of Canons at Choral Evensong at the Cathedral, 1800hr.
Wednesday, 12 Novr Induction of Val Rowlands as Vicar of Llandyrnog & Llangyfan and Vicar of Llanrhaeadr & Nantglyn at St Dyfnog’s Church, Llanrhaeadr yng Nghinmeirch, 1900hr
Wednesday, 19 Novr Induction of Elaine Atack as Rector of Bala at Christ Church, Bala, 1900hr
Sunday , 23 Novr Confirmation, St Matthew’s Church, Buckley 1530hr
Tuesday, 25 Novr Area Deans / MAL Consultation, St Margaret’s Church Hall, Wrexham, 0930hr – 1600hr
Monday, 1 Decr Installation of John Lomas as Archdeacon of St Asaph at Choral Evensong in the Cathedral, 1800hr.
Wednesday, 10 Decr Nicholastide Confirmation, Cathedral, 1830hr


8 January Commissioning of Jonathan Smith as Mission Area Leader of Wrexham, St Giles’ Church, Wrexham 1900hr
20 January Clergy Synod Day, Beaufort Park Hotel, Mold
9/10 March Area Deans / MAL residential, Foxhill, Frodsham
2 April Chrism Eucharist, Cathedral, 1100hr
13 June Readers’ Day, Gresford
27 June Ordination, Cathedral, 1000hr
29 September Clergy Synod Day, venue to be confirmed
7 October Retired Clergy Association Eucharist & lunch, St Asaph
10 October Diocesan Conference
11/12 November Area Deans / MAL residential, Foxhill, Frodsham

Notes and Queries

Advent Calendars
It is hard to think that it is nearly time to start thinking about Christmas again. I’ve already received my chocolate Advent Calendar, a sample of “the Real Advent Calendar” that has been produced once again. Further details are available at, and I am told that Tesco will be stocking them in good time for Christmas.

Diocesan Conference
The Diocesan Conference should never be regarded as just another meeting. It is the time when the family takes responsibility for its common life, and those who serve at diocesan level give an account of their work. We also take counsel for the future of our Church.  Our Communication Officer, Phil Topham, reminds us that details of the Conference can be found on special pages of the website. Phil also will also be tweeting from the event using the hashtag #StAsaphDC as in previous years.

Mary Jones World, Llanycil, Bala
There is a warm invitation from the Bible Society to visit the new state-of-the-art visitor and education centre which will give people the opportunity to discover the story of Mary Jones and Thomas Charles, and learn about the Bible’s impact not only in Wales but the rest of the world. There are special welcome days on 11, 18 and 22nd October between 1000hr and 1600hr. There will also be special welcome days in April 2015 when the centre will be reopened for the new season. For more information, to make special arrangements to reserve places on one of the welcome days, or to make special arrangements for a visit between November and March please contact: Nerys Pritchard, Education Officer and Centre Manager on 01793 418100 / 07810 750983 or by email.

Society of St Martha and Mary, Sheldon
I am sure you are well aware of the valuable ministry of this small lay Christian Community supporting those in ministry. Their 2015 programme is available offering retreats along with more specific resources for times of particular need. Full details are available from and the Society offers a 20% discount for clergy.

It was a delight to share in an excellent few days at the Oxford Clergy School with so many of you, and an excellent range of speakers. My thanks again to the hardy team who organised the event, and gave us much to enjoy, reflect upon and be challenged by. The fellowship was very good, and I trust that you have been refreshed and renewed by our time together.

My warmest good wishes now for your ongoing ministry,

Bishop Gregory Signature






October 2014 Ad Clerum


Diocesan Transition Missioner
and Vicar of Brymbo and Bwlchgwyn

We are looking to appoint a senior priest to act as an inspiring and dynamic agent of change in the diocese, assisting deaneries and mission areas to grow into the 2020 Vision for the diocese as set out in the “Unlocking our Potential” documentation and who will be expected to coordinate the work of transition mentors in the diocese. The post holder will also have pastoral responsibility for the parishes of Brymbo and Bwlchgwyn.

Further information and an application form can be obtained from:
The Bishop’s Secretary, Sian Sweeting-Jones
Telephone: 01745 583503
or from the diocesan website

Applications should be received at Esgobty by 12 noon on Monday, 27 October 2014
and interviews will be held on Thursday, 13 November 2014

Brymbo & Bwlchgwyn Role Description
Brymbo & Bwlchygwyn Person Specification
Christ Church Bwlchgwyn Profile
St Mary’s Brymbo Profile
Transition Missioner Job Description
Transition Missioner, Brymbo & Bwlchgwyn Application Form