I want to take this opportunity to say how pleased I am to be succeeding Bishop Anthony Priddis as President of the Local Ministry Network. His will be a hard act to follow, but I am as convinced as he that Local Ministry (capitalised or not) is vital – not just for the Church but, more importantly, for God’s world. Those of you who are aware of the thrust of my ministry here at St Albans will know I am passionate that, in all we say and do, each church shows God’s love alive in his world – that, as we say in this diocese, we are actually Living God’s Love. That ‘living’ happens, not just in structures or schemes, important though they are, but in the day-to-day real life of individuals experiencing loving Christian ministry and service where they are – locally.
A new name in the letterhead certainly doesn’t mean that everything has become new! [2 Corinthians 5:17]. I shan’t be making great changes. But I want to assure you of my commitment in support of the Network and of your Steering Group as we all strive to foster and further the development of local ministry from our smallest parish to our largest diocese.
I wish you all well in this great adventure upon which we have been set.
+Alan St Albans