Newcastle welcome Winchester link diocese

First published on: 24th March 2022

By Nic Denyer, Lay Ministry Development Officer and Ce Pacitti, Continuing Ministerial Formation Officer

The trip was a huge success, thanks to the people who welcomed and spent time with Helen, Ian, Mo, Debbie, Richard, Anni, Chris and the group leader Faith Bailey (WSM)

Newcastle Diocese has been linked to the Diocese of Winchester since 1988. This was as a result of the ‘Faith in the City’ report when Bishop John V. Taylor challenged the Diocese of Winchester to raise an equivalent amount to its parish share for needy dioceses.

Newcastle was one of the beneficiaries of this very generous gesture and the money has been a huge blessing to the mission of the church in the Diocese. In more recent times the link has evolved to be more about developing relationships and providing opportunities to share and learn from each other.

In February, Newcastle Diocese welcomed seven ordinands and one reader in training from the Winchester School of Mission (WSM), who spent three days travelling around our Diocese, exploring what mission and ministry looks like across our diverse and beautiful part of the world.

The group were staying in Heaton and were welcomed daily to morning prayer at St Gabriel’s Heaton by Revd Jonathan Lawson, before beginning their explorations.

On Monday, the group travelled to Embleton where they met Alison Hardy and Christine Hunter, who gave us a fabulous insight into multi-parish ministry in a rural coastal area. They also met Judith Sadler, who provided them with an overview of the theology of wellbeing and welcome through the work of TCT (Transforming Communities Together Tyne to Tweed).

On Tuesday, we travelled to Holy Island, and it was a privilege to see what this place of history and prayer meant to our guests. They were warmly and generously welcomed and fed by Revd Sarah Hills and Revd Sam Quilty, and spent the day in the company of the Northern Saints, which was profound and wonderful.

The final day of the trip was spent at MINE, St Silas, where they were hosted by Revd Helen Gill, Reader Matthew King and Dave Johnson, youth and children project co-ordinator. Some of the group joined the mid-week Eucharist as St Silas, and others walked through Byker to St Michaels, where they saw the plans for the Lighthouse Project. The group saw and heard first hand authentic collaboration, and were inspired by the MINE model and approach to mission and ministry.

The link between our two dioceses has been strengthened by this visit, and it was clear that the travellers set off back to Winchester with their hearts and heads full of inspiration and love for our place and diverse contexts.

It is hoped that we might be able to plan a return pilgrimage to Winchester at some point in the future, as we look forward to learning more about the mission and ministry of all God’s people in Newcastle and Winchester.

Powered by Church Edit