Diocesan News (Page 2)

Bishop’s Lent Appeal

The Bishop in Europe: The Right Reverend Dr. Robert Innes  This year, the Bishop’s Lent Appeal hopes to aid the plight of unaccompanied child migrants in the Calais area. These youngsters have been reduced to sleeping rough in the open since the closure of the refugee camps last year. They are extremely vulnerable. We hope two projects will benefit: Firstly, a safe house and outreach ministry to child migrants run by an Old Catholic monk…

Bishop Robert’s Christmas Message

The Bishop in Europe: The Right Reverend Dr. Robert Innes The message of Christmas is so much bigger and better than the trappings of Christmastime! As I write these words, the temperature is about 23 degrees. The red hot poker and bird of paradise are in flower and large bunches of bananas are hanging from the trees. I am visiting the island of Madeira – a thousand miles away from the land of Charles Dickens…

Bishop’s Advent Appeal 2017

The Bishop in Europe: The Right Reverend Dr. Robert Innes October 2017 Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, This year’s Advent Appeal aims to support homeless refugees and asylum seekers in Rome with humanitarian assistance (a daily, cooked breakfast and essential items for personal dignity and warmth) for 6 months. We are doing this through a well-established and well-run project established by our Episcopal sister church of St. Paul’s Within the Walls.  The Joel Nafuma…

Report on the Synod: Passion, Prayer and Fellowship

This contribution was written by Sandra Sue From the 5th October tot he 7th October seven of us from Holy Trinity Church Utrecht attended the Archdeaconry Synod for North West Europe (i.e. Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) in Belgium. They were fathers David and Grant and the archdeaconry reps Maria Koppenol, Adrian Los, Sandra Sue, Simon Urquhart and Nora Westerbeek van Eerten. (If you are wondering why I do not mention All Saints Amersfoort, it…

Pastoral Letter





The Bishop in Europe:

The Right Reverend Dr. Robert Innes

July 1st 2016

Pastoral Letter

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The UK’s Referendum on EU membership is one of the most significant political events of our time, for British people and for Europeans more generally. For some it is seen as an opportunity, for many others of us it has generated profound feelings of sadness, grief and shock. These feelings may exist within the membership of our chaplaincies and if so need to be recognised. We encourage you to talk to your clergy about what has happened, and to seek mutual support and understanding.

We know that many with British connections in our diocese are fearful and uncertain about the future. There are concerns about health care, pension rights, residence rights, employment rights. In fact none of these rights will change in the short to medium term. If the leaving process (‘Article 50’) is invoked by the UK Government this autumn then the arrangements for the UK’s future relationship with the EU are unlikely to be sorted until the end of 2018. And there are several alternative models for a new relationship. Those of us with influence can do what we can to keep the situation of those UK nationals who are relatively vulnerable in the public eye in forums such as General Synod and the House of Lords. Meanwhile we encourage an attitude of patience, wisdom and the avoidance of hasty decisions.

We have had English-speaking chaplaincies on the European mainland for over 400 years. That is not going to change, and the Church of England remains fully committed to this her Diocese in Europe. Our ecumenical partners have reacted with dismay to the UK’s referendum result. It is now more important than ever that we reassure our brother and sister Christians at a local level of our unwavering commitment to our partnership with them. We believe it is also right that our churches re-double their efforts to demonstrate the unity which transcends national and political boundaries, and their social commitment to the places and projects in which they are involved locally.

One of the least attractive features of the Referendum campaign has been the intolerance – racism even – that it has seemed to encourage. This is a worrying feature of contemporary Europe more generally. So we emphasise that our churches are open and inclusive places where all are welcome.

We exhort you all to pray. Pray for political leaders across Europe as they seek to maintain European cohesiveness. Pray that the UK may be a generous and outward looking country that contributes to human flourishing around the world. Pray also for church leaders that we may enable the Christian family to model that harmony and unity which is the vision of God’s kingdom, in the midst of a fractured world.

Faith is the powerful antidote to fear and uncertainty. As Christians, we believe in a God who holds the destiny of the nations in his hands. So at an uncertain time in Europe’s history, we pray for and invoke the providential guiding and leading of God in the hearts of us all and upon every nation.

Yours in Christ,

+Robert Gibraltar in Europe       +David Hamid

Bishop’s Lent Appeal

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, Rationale My last two appeals have been for aid for migrants coming into Italy and Greece. They related to work in our own diocese. This appeal, by contrast, is for the education of Palestinian children in the Holy Land. It relates to our neighbouring diocese of Jerusalem and the Middle East. Education is of vital importance in attempts to secure a peaceful future for the Middle East. Education makes…

Bishop Robert’s Christmas message

Read  the Bishop’s Christian Message or watch on youtube The nine lessons and carols service from King’s College Cambridge is listened to by millions of people all over the world. It is one of England’s most distinctive and successful religious exports! For me, the service has especial resonance, because this was the college where I studied as an undergraduate and so the distinctive sound of the treble voices and fulsome reed organ stops brings back happy memories of my student life.…

Bishop’s Advent Appeal: The Sant’Egidio Programme

Every year our Bishop choses a worthy cause for chaplaincies to consider contributing to as a whole for Advent.  We contribute to it through the blue bag at our collection during the service. Bishop Robert Innes has written the following appeal… One year after the tragedy off Lampedusa I am writing this letter on the anniversary of the Lampedusa migrant shipwreck. On 3rd October 2013, a 20 metre fishing boat carrying migrants from Africa caught…