A thank you message from Bishop Rachel
It’s very good to have finally arrived! On a number of occasions in recent weeks I have found myself asking that familiar childhood question, ‘Are we there yet?’ Of course the reality is that ‘there’ is only one of many points along the journey as we join in with God’s work of transformation and growing the Kingdom of God. But I am very glad to now be in the Diocese and to be ‘Journeying Together’ with you.
Over the past few months life has been marked by endings and new beginnings. I’m delighted that I am beginning my ministry here in September as this month always seems to me to be much more of a new beginning than January. It comes from all those many years of starting the new term, although I haven’t yet bought a new pencil case or sharpened the pencils!
Thank you for all the many cards, gifts and messages of welcome and support which have continued to pour in ever since the end of March. They have meant a lot to Guy and me. Thank you too to all those who were able to be at my consecration in Canterbury. For me it was a day full of joy and hope and I found it both profound and deeply humbling. I am now looking forward to being with as many people as possible in Gloucester Cathedral on September 19th for my inauguration as we celebrate our shared ministry and our calling to serve Jesus Christ together in this Diocese.
I am eagerly anticipating encountering new people and places. I know that everyone in a new post always says they want to listen, but it truly is my intention to do just that as I gradually meet people and visit the parishes, chaplaincies, schools, fresh expressions and other places where people are engaging in mission and ministry. I am greatly looking forward to experiencing the rich diversity of church tradition, and the many different ways people are being and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ in a variety of contexts. I am aware that meeting you all and visiting everywhere is going to take time, so I hope you will be patient with me.
I am also aware that as well as being exciting; times of transition can be unsettling. It is therefore important to me that there is a climate in which people can be open and honest about their thoughts and feelings as we seek to deepen relationships with God, each other and those amongst whom we live and work.
I hope that you will find me accessible and approachable. I am going to trial a new system such that the emails for the Bishop of Gloucester are only read by me in the first instance. Please note the new email address, firstname.lastname@example.org. This will operate from September 20th and the existing bshpglos email address should no longer be used. Email addresses for JP, Di and others in my office will remain the same.
This seems a good point to say a huge ‘thank you’ to Bishop Martyn, the staff team and all at College Green, Church House and the Cathedral who have given me such a warm welcome and offered me so much support. I am particularly grateful to JP for delaying his move to Winchcombe until January – his wisdom, knowledge and support is already greatly aiding my settling in.
This comes with my thanks and prayers.
Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:19-21