Category : * Anglican – Episcopal

News and Commentary about the Anglican Communion

(Insidetime) An interview with Bishop Rachel Treweek–‘Unique individuals behind every statistic’

You previously led the Church’s work with women’s prisons. How do you find men’s prisons different?

What strikes me straight away when I go into female prisons is the very obvious vulnerability and how many women are in there for non-violent crimes. We know so many of those women have been victims of abuse themselves. That makes it sound like men aren’t vulnerable, and of course every prisoner is vulnerable in a different way. A lot of men are in prison for more violent crimes, for more serious crimes, but there are those who don’t need to be in prison.

The Government is proposing to build 20,000 new prison places, including 500 for women. It could take the prison population in England and Wales up from 80,000 to 100,000. How do you feel about that?

I’ll be brutally honest here; I would say the criminal justice system is broken. That doesn’t mean there aren’t lots of good people working in it – I’m not being negative about everyone. But I think that saying we’re going to create lots of new places, for men and women, is a big admission that we haven’t got this right.

I heard a story the other day of a man in prison who is willing to say he has anger issues, but in two years he hasn’t been able to access any anger management. We’re not coping with the rehabilitation and education part of prison even as it stands. How is adding a whole load of new places going to reduce reoffending?

For me, it’s about how we are really looking at the issues causing these problems in the first place.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Prison/Prison Ministry

Archbishop Justin Welby awards Lambeth Doctorate to Canon John Rees

The Archbishop awarded Canon Rees a Lambeth Doctorate of Civil Law last night in recognition for his erudition and distinguished service as Provincial Registrar. The award was given during a service of Evening Prayer at Lambeth Palace, in the company of Canon Rees’s family, friends and former colleagues.

For over 20 years, Canon Rees held the offices of Registrar of the Diocese of Oxford, Registrar of the Province of Canterbury and Legal Adviser to the Anglican Consultative Council. He was a founder member, treasurer and, latterly, chairman of the Ecclesiastical Law Society. The Anglican Communion has benefited from his wisdom and knowledge through, amongst other things, the Windsor Report in 2004, and his role as Convenor of the Legal Advisors’ Network which published Principles of Canon Law Applicable to the Churches of the Anglican Communion for the Lambeth Conference in 2008.

Canon Rees has advised upon, assisted and enabled the ministry of the church at every level from individuals to parishes and dioceses, national churches and international bodies, assisting the Church in the fulfilment of the call to preach the gospel in season and out of season (2 Timothy 4. 2). Throughout this, as an ordained priest he has continued to minister in his local parish.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Law & Legal Issues, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Windsor Report / Process

(Church Times) Evangelicals encouraged to engage in soul-searching after abuse

The Church of England Evangelical Council (CEEC) has published material intended to initiate conversations about “issues of culture, power and abuse” within its constituency.

The materials, published on Wednesday, are “designed to help Evangelical churches review, repent and reshape their cultures on the back of the recent Thirtyone:eight independent reviews into two prominent Evangelical churches and their leaders”, a press release says.

The reviews to which it refers are those of Emmanuel Proprietary Chapel, Ridgway, in Wimbledon and the Revd Jonathan Fletcher (News, 26 March), and the Crowded House, a non-denominational Evangelical church in Sheffield, at which “some instances of emotional and/or psychological abuse took place as a result of persistent coercive and controlling behaviour”.

The resources include an introductory film and a “liturgy of lament” for churches to use. There is also a booklet, Church Cultures Review Questions, which contains more than 100 questions for churches.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), Ethics / Moral Theology, Evangelicals, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Theology, Violence

(C of E) ‘Virus knows no national boundaries’–The Bishop of Durham calls for vaccine equity

Asking a question in the House of Lords, Bishop Paul Butler said the omicron variant showed that the virus “knows no national boundaries.”

He said: “In the light of the new omicron variant that has dominated the news over the weekend, my colleague Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of Cape Town urged those of us in rich countries to do better at narrowing inequality of vaccination rates, which are 7% in Africa and 70% in Europe.

“We must acknowledge that this virus knows no national boundaries and will spread, mutate and return to us in the way that we are seeing, so we need a global approach, not simply a bilateral approach.

Read it all.

Posted in Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, Globalization, Health & Medicine, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology, South Africa

(C of E) Next Bishop of Barking announced

It has been announced that the Reverend Lynne Cullens will be the next Bishop of Barking, succeeding the Right Reverend Peter Hill, who retired earlier this year.

Lynne is currently Rector of Stockport and Brinnington in the Diocese of Chester, where she has served since July 2019. She is also a trustee and the Chair of the National Estate Churches Network.

Speaking about her appointment in a message to churches in the Barking Area, Lynne said:

It has been the most delightful and humbling surprise to have been called to this role and to Chelmsford Diocese. I am very much looking forward to joining you and to meeting with, and learning from, people, communities and partners across the Barking area.

It will be a privilege to serve God alongside you and to support Bishop Guli as she leads our continuing discernment of his will for our diocese and his Church”.

Read it all.


Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

(BBC) Storm Arwen: Falling stone damages Worcester Cathedral

Repairs are under way at a cathedral after part of its roof was damaged during Storm Arwen.

On Friday, a piece of masonry fell from a tower at Worcester Cathedral and pierced the north choir aisle roof.

A team of experts is conducting investigations and weather-proofing the damaged area, the cathedral said.

Dean of the cathedral, the Very Reverend Peter Atkinson, said the repairs to the medieval building would require “a great deal of care”.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Climate Change, Weather, Parish Ministry

(C of E) Some of the nation’s largest landowners make unprecedented pact to jointly tackle the climate and nature crises

  • Some of England’s biggest landowners, who collectively own and manage around 30 percent of England’s land, sign pact to tackle climate change
  • Signatories include farmers, charities and private landowners, vow to work together alongside nature to use land effectively
  • Commitment made to coincide with outcomes of COP26 to show what can be done at home to tackle climate change
  • Joint principles include backing nature to tackle the climate crisis, reducing carbon and adapt to changing circumstances

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Climate Change, Weather, Ecology, Energy, Natural Resources, Religion & Culture

(Telegraph) Rowan Williams: technology has ‘disabled us intellectually – we’re forgetting how to learn’

When I meet Rowan Williams at the Southbank Centre in late October, there is much going on. The Church of England, of which he was once Archbishop of Canterbury, stands accused of trying to close churches to save cash; a famous bishop has converted to Rome; and Williams is waiting for his daughter to give birth (the boy, his first grandchild, will arrive a few days later).

Although he’s been lampooned for being wishy-washy, I find Williams’s language to be economical and exact, and though he is thoroughly loyal to his successors in the clerical hierarchy, buried beneath his metaphors is a cutting critique of where we’re at. “There was a loss of nerve in the 1960s,” he says of Anglicanism. “Like St Peter walking on the water”, the Church seemed to “look down at the wrong moment” and lose its footing.

Now, Williams believes, we are seeing the legacy of that “pervasive and paralysing anxiety about the role of the Church in society”. Amid “a general cultural tide flowing away” from Christianity, we have to ask: what if the Church “is no longer a given….”?

Information has become abundant, he says, yet “the process of acquiring that information” – ie scrolling through one’s phone – “has disabled us intellectually… We are increasingly forgetting how to learn. We assume that knowledge can be distilled and communicated and transferred just like that… a tick box approach which is found in clergy training.” What knowledge we inherit, we take for granted, yet “the absolutism of some modern social morality” – the idea that right and wrong are obvious – “did not drop from heaven. We learnt to see things this way.”

Read it all (subscription).

Posted in --Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, Books, Church of England (CoE), Poetry & Literature, Theology

Prayers for the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina This Day

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

Bp David Hamid–Was Ecumenical history made in Palermo?

On 7 November, I believe that ecumenical history may have been made when the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Palermo, Corrado Lorefice, preached the sermon at the installation of the new Chaplain of Holy Cross, the Revd Dr James Hadley. Certainly this is a first in this diocese and in the Church of England itself it may well be unprecedented for a Roman Catholic Archbishop to take such a significant role in the installation of an Anglican parish priest!

Many other local clergy were present for the mass, including the Orthodox Archimandrite for Southern Italy, representing Metropolitan Policarpo of Italy.

Read it all and enjoy the pictures.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecumenical Relations, Europe, Italy, Roman Catholic

(C of E) Church opens “baby bank” lifeline as new parents struggle to make ends meet

A vital service offering support to new parents who are struggling to afford essentials for their babies is being run by a church.

The North Shields Baby Bank, based at St John’s Church Percy Main, in North Tyneside, has helped more than 60 families since its launch in the summer with items including nappies, wipes, clothing and baby formula.

Revd Lee Cleminson, Vicar of St John’s, said: “We’ve all heard of food banks and know what a valuable lifeline they are for people struggling.

“However, as a result of parents discreetly contacting the vicarage, asking for help, there was a clear need for a similar scheme which supplied basic baby items.

“One mother who came to the church for help explained that she was having to choose between charging her electric meter and buying nappies for her beautiful newborn baby boy.

Read it all.

Posted in Children, Church of England (CoE), Marriage & Family, Parish Ministry, Poverty, Religion & Culture, Stewardship

(FWI) Archbishop urges openness to counter farmers’ mental health challenges

Farmers and those living in rural areas have been urged to seek help and open up if they are suffering feelings of isolation, emptiness or despair, accepting that mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of and is highly treatable.

Answering questions at the NFU’s annual Henry Plumb Lecture, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, spoke candidly about his own experience of depression.

“I take anti-depressants. I see someone quite regularly,” he said. “For quite a long time my behaviour became so complicated that even my colleagues noticed it as being unusual.

“I made a joke of it, but depression is not a joke and is the most frequent form of mental illness, and is treatable for most people most of the time.”

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), Health & Medicine, Psychology

(Guardian) ‘Rogues or idiots’: Justin Welby condemns TV portrayal of clergy

It became an instant hit with viewers for its female vicar, quirky cast of village characters and the gentle fun it poked at the Church of England.

Almost three decades after the first episode was aired, the Vicar of Dibley, starring Dawn French, is still a staple of Christmas specials and fundraising telethons. The Rev Geraldine Granger even made several broadcasts to the nation during lockdown.

But the archbishop of Canterbury has cast aspersions on Dibley’s vicar and other television clergy, saying they portrayed vicars as “rogues or idiots”, whereas in reality they are “hard-working, normal people, caring deeply about what they do”.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, England / UK, Ministry of the Ordained, Movies & Television, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture

New Bishop of Willesden announced

The Revd Canon Lusa Nsenga-Ngoy, currently Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Mission and Ministry Enabler in the Diocese of Leicester, has today been announced as the Diocese of London’s next Bishop of Willesden, covering the boroughs of Brent, Ealing, Harrow and Hillingdon.

The official announcement from Downing Street came while Canon Lusa visited Twyford School, a leading Church of England School in Acton, students from which played a role in deciding his appointment. The Sixth Form students, who judged sermons from shortlisted candidates, this morning welcomed Lusa and the Bishop of London, Sarah Mullally, at a special assembly, with Alice Hudson, Executive Head Teacher of Twyford CofE Academies Trust.

As part of today’s introduction to the Willesden Area, Canon Lusa will meet clergy and interfaith leaders from the local community.

He will be consecrated in January 2022, and will join the College of Bishops in the Diocese of London. He succeeds the Rt Revd Pete Broadbent as Bishop of Willesden, who served as Bishop for 20 years.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

(C of E) ‘I was fighting it’ an AI scientist’s 12-year journey to ordination

Henry Akingbemisilu was ordained as a Deacon earlier this year. He serves as a Self-Supporting Minister in Thamesmead, London, in the Diocese of Southwark – alongside working in Data Science.
Henry is shown in his clerical robes smiling
Henry was born in Nigeria, coming to the UK to study mathematics and computer network engineering. His journey to ordination started in 2008, but it was only in 2015 that he finally started the official discernment process with Southwark Diocese.

In the years that preceded this, he was involved in his church – in the choir, in prayer ministry groups and as Church Warden for eight years but felt a ‘calling’ to do more.

“You know, when God is calling, you just won’t be at peace with yourself until you give in,” he explained.

“It took me so many years.

“I asked myself is this God or is it me making things up?

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Science & Technology, Seminary / Theological Education

CS Lewis on CS Lewis Day (I)–His description of his own Conversion

You must picture me alone in that room in Magdalen, night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England. I did not then see what is now the most shining and obvious thing; the Divine humility which will accept a convert even on such terms. The Prodigal Son at least walked home on his own feet. But who can duly adore that Love which will open the high gates to a prodigal who is brought in kicking, struggling, resentful, and darting his eyes in every direction for a chance of escape? The words “compelle intrare,” compel them to come in, have been so abused be wicked men that we shudder at them; but, properly understood, they plumb the depth of the Divine mercy. The hardness of God is kinder than the softness of men, and His compulsion is our liberation.

–C.S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy (Harcourt Brace, 1956), p.228

Posted in Apologetics, Church History, Church of England (CoE)

A Prayer for the Feast Day of C S Lewis

O God of searing truth and surpassing beauty, we give thee thanks for Clive Staples Lewis whose sanctified imagination lighteth fires of faith in young and old alike; Surprise us also with thy joy and draw us into that new and abundant life which is ours in Christ Jesus, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Posted in Apologetics, Church History, Church of England (CoE), Poetry & Literature, Spirituality/Prayer

Prayers for the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina This Day

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

(Church Times) Faith groups were sidelined at COP26, says Bishop of Norwich

The Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Revd Graham Usher, has criticised the Government for its lack of engagement with faith groups at the COP26 climate summit and urged it to make climate change a priority over the coming year.

Bishop Usher, who is the lead bishop on the environment, was at the UN talks in Glasgow which ended on Saturday, when countries had agreed to phase down coal use, end fossil-fuel subsidies, and come back next year to strengthen their commitments. But the promised financial support for poor and vulnerable nations remained lacking.

Bishop Usher said on Tuesday evening: “There was a powerful sense of solidarity across the faith groups and denominations at COP26. All faith traditions value the sanctity of creation, and before the summit many of us met at the Vatican to present our call to COP26 President Alok Sharma, where there was probably 85 per cent of the world’s population represented.

“In Glasgow, it was disappointing to see no space for faith groups at the summit. The Anglican Communion delegation struggled to find spaces to meet. It was a great shame the British Government didn’t put more emphasis on the role of faith communities.”

Bishop Usher applauded the efforts of Mr Sharma, however. He said: “I want to praise the commitment of Alok Sharma and his team, who have worked incredibly hard. The UK has the presidency of the COP for the next 12 months, and I would like to see them making use of this in the lead up to COP27 in Egypt.”

Read it all.

Posted in --Scotland, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecology, Energy, Natural Resources, Ethics / Moral Theology, Science & Technology, Stewardship

The Latest Edition of the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina Enewsletter

December 8 Hearing; Prayer Vigil Organized

The importance, for the Diocese and its Parishes, of the December 8 South Carolina Supreme Court hearing cannot be overstated. For that reason, the clergy and people of the Diocese are strongly encouraged to keep the coming hearing in your prayers as the date approaches. Pray first for the shielding of Mr. Runyan and his legal team as they prepare for this hearing. Pray also that they be granted divine wisdom in preparing their arguments. Pray finally for the Justices (Donald W. Beatty, John W. Kittredge, John Cannon Few, George C. “Buck” James) that they be granted divine clarity in their preparations, in the hearing and, in their final ruling. Read more about the hearing.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Media, Parish Ministry

(Guardian) Justin Welby admits he was wrong to say there was a cloud over George Bell

The archbishop of Canterbury has apologised for saying there was a “significant cloud” over the name of one of the most venerated figures in the Church of England who was accused of sexual abuse.

In a move that may end a protracted and acrimonious battle within the C of E over the reputation of George Bell, a bishop of Chichester and a leading 20th-century figure, Justin Welby issued a personal statement admitting his earlier position had been wrong.

In a remarkable volte-face, Welby said a statue commemorating Bell as “one of the most courageous, distinguished Anglican bishops of the past century” would be erected at Canterbury Cathedral.

In 2015, 57 years after Bell’s death, the C of E paid compensation and issued a formal apology to a woman who alleged that Bell had sexually abused her when she was a child.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Anthropology, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church History, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ethics / Moral Theology, Pastoral Theology, Theology

Personal statement from Archbishop Justin Welby on Bishop George Bell

What I say today that is new and should have been said sooner is this: I do not consider there to be a ‘significant cloud’ over Bishop George Bell’s name.

Previously I refused to retract that statement and I was wrong to do so. I took that view because of the importance we rightly place on listening to those who come forward with allegations of abuse, and the duty of care we owe to them. But we also owe a duty of care to those who are accused. I apologise for the hurt that my refusal to retract that statement has caused to Bishop Bell’s surviving relatives, colleagues and longstanding supporters. They have all raised this issue, often powerfully, and I have recognised my error as a result of their advocacy.

Bishop Bell was and remains one of the most courageous, distinguished Anglican bishops of the past century, committed to the peace and hope of Jesus Christ in a time of conflict and war. The debt owed to him extends far beyond the Church that he served and is one that we share as a society. I am delighted that the statue to him that was planned will be erected on the west front of Canterbury Cathedral, where he served as Dean, as soon as the extensive repair and maintenance works are complete.

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church History, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ethics / Moral Theology

(C of E) Nearly 400 ordinands on course to take up stipendiary curacy posts in 2022

The Church of England has confirmed that 400 stipendiary curacy posts – both full and part time –will be available for ordinands expecting to take up stipendiary title posts from 2022 after leaving theological training.

Of these, 290 posts are fully funded by the dioceses while the Strategic Ministry Fund (SMF), administered by the Strategic Ministry Board, will support an additional 110 posts.

The SMF was set up in 2019 to help ensure that dioceses are able to support additional curate numbers as part of the drive to increase the number of candidates for ordained ministry.

The Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, Martin Seeley, who is Chair of the Ministry Council, said: “Stipendiary ministry remains core to the work of the Church of England and our Vision and Strategy for the future.

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York joint Presidential Address to Synod

We are walking into uncharted territory:

The uncharted territory of living with COVID-19.
The uncharted territory of climate crisis
The uncharted territory of rapidly changing cultures, and the questions those cultures pose
The uncharted territory of our own continuing numerical decline and all the challenges, not least financial, that go with it.

We don’t have a map.

There is a clue in the title. It is uncharted territory.

Our job together is to draw the map, to work out what it means to be the Church of England in and for this day and in this age.

But we do have a compass: an utterly reliable source of comfort and guidance, by the Holy Spirit, the one who has told us that he himself is the way (see John 14. 6).

Read it all.

Posted in --Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Archbishop of York Stephen Cottrell, Church of England (CoE)

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Hugh of Lincoln

Holy God, who didst endow thy servant Hugh of Lincoln with wise and cheerful boldness, and taught him to commend the discipline of holy life to kings and princes: Grant that we also, rejoicing in the Good News of thy mercy, and fearing nothing but the loss of thee, may be bold to speak the truth in love, in the name of Jesus Christ our Redeemer; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Posted in Church History, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Spirituality/Prayer

‘We must now keep up the moral pressure so that pledges are urgently turned into measurable action’: Bishops respond to COP26

Graham Usher, the Bishop of Norwich and the Church of England’s lead bishop for the environment, and Olivia Graham, the Bishop of Reading, have spoken at the conclusion of COP.

In a statement they said: “At COP we called for keeping global warming to below 1.5 degrees, ending fossil fuel subsidies, and securing finance for the world’s most vulnerable people who are already effected by climate breakdown.

“Progress was made in all these areas, plus cutting methane emissions and halting deforestation. We were particularly inspired to hear powerful testimonies from young people and representatives of indigenous peoples.

“We pay tribute to the work of Alok Sharma MP, the COP26 President, and his team.

“Negotiations always have some compromises and disappointments. These impact the world’s economically poorest the most. We must now keep up the moral pressure so that pledges are urgently turned into measurable action….

Read it all.

Posted in Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecology, Energy, Natural Resources, Ethics / Moral Theology, Globalization, Science & Technology, Stewardship

(ADOSC) The Rt. Rev. Alex D. Dickson, Jr. (1926–2021)

From there:

Bishop Dickson was consecrated as the First Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee on April 9, 1983. Prior to his consecration as Bishop, he served 10 years as a parish priest in the Diocese of Mississippi; four years at Rolling Fork and Hollandale; six years in Jackson; and then he served as Rector and Headmaster of All Saints School in Vicksburg for 15 years.

In 1995, after he retired as Bishop of West Tennessee, he began Mission Work in Southeast Asia and Africa. At the time of his death, he was serving as Bishop in Residence at St. Michael’s Church in Charleston, SC. He was also Chairman of a mission to a leprosy colony in Liberia. His greatest passion was to bring people to a deep faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. He loved to work with people in small groups, teaching them to pray the Scriptures. He was working in this ministry until the day of his death.

During World War II, he served on a destroyer in the Pacific during the Battle of Okinawa.

He was born on September 9, 1926, on New Africa Plantation near Alligator, Mississippi. He married Charnelle Perkins of Glen Allan, MS on October 7, 1948. They have three sons: Alex III (now in heaven), Charles in Sylva, NC, and John in Memphis, TN; six grandchildren, and 13 great grandchildren. God is good! Charnelle died on October 16, 1995. He married Jane Graham Carver of Charleston, SC on January 2, 1999. Jane has three children and six grandchildren. God is good!

“I am the resurrection and the life, saith the Lord; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live; and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.”

Memorials may be given to G3 Ministry (led by his stepson), The Rev. Graham Schuyler, 76 Westfield Drive, Pawleys Island, SC 29585.

Posted in * South Carolina, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Death / Burial / Funerals, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, TEC Bishops

Anglican Bishop Alex Dickson RIP

Posted in * South Carolina, Anglican Church in North America (ACNA), Death / Burial / Funerals, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Prayers for the Anglican Diocese of South Carolina This Day

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, Parish Ministry, Spirituality/Prayer

(Churchman) J I Packer–Expository Preaching: Charles Simeon and ourselves

[Charles] Simeon himself is our example here. The feature of his preaching which most constantly impressed his hearers was the fact that he was, as they said, “in earnest”; and that reflected his own overwhelming sense of sin, and of the wonder of the grace that had saved him; and that in turn bore witness to the closeness of his daily fellowship and walk with his God. As he gave time to sermon preparation, so he gave time to seeking God’s face.

“The quality of his preaching,” writes the Bishop of Bradford, “was but a reflection of the quality of the man himself. And there can be little doubt that the man himself was largely made in the early morning hours which he devoted to private prayer and the devotional study of the Scriptures. It was his custom to rise at 4 a.m., light his own fire, and then devote the first four hours of the day to communion with God. Such costly self-discipline made the preacher. That was primary. The making of the sermon was secondary and derivative.”

Read it all.

Posted in Church History, Church of England (CoE), Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Preaching / Homiletics