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Transforming the communities of Essex & East London through Christ’s presence

Church reform and renewal are needed but so is discipleship says Bishop

Don’t miss the point of the work going on to reform and renew the church, the Bishop of Chelmsford Stephen Cottrell has told Chelmsford Diocesan Synod:

that the gospel of Jesus Christ be shared effectively and lived joyfully.

Besides the separate measures making up the national reform and renewal package,

A renewal of prayer and a reform of theological vision…will be the main tools of our participation with God in the renewal and reform of his church,

the Bishop said. It is the "very local," 

the local church which is you the individual follower of Christ, the place where the Holy Spirit has chosen to dwell, the one for whom Christ died and rose again 

which really matters. For,

Unless each one of us is prepared to be reformed and renewed in our discipleship the church will not grow and we will have inhibited the hand of God.

Bishop Stephen announced that the next Synod will put this at the heart of the agenda.

Download the full address.

Picture: Canon Dr Susan Atkin, who was presented with the Order of St Cedd on her retirement as Chair of the House of Laity of the Chelmsford Diocesan Synod.

Presenting the Award, Bishop Stephen said:

"Sue has been a key person in the life of this diocese for more than a quarter of its history, helping us shape our strategy and put it into practice.

"Above all she has shown us what a Christian disciple looks like, using her time, gifts and talents in the service of the gospel."

More information

  • The Chelmsford Diocesan Synod met on Saturday June 6 at Chelmsford Cathedral. The Synod is the regional parliament of the Church of England in East London and Essex.
  • The Bishop thanked members for their service on the present Synod. The process of electing a new Synod is under way. 
  • The national reform and renewal work streams are focused on evangelism, missionary discipleship, leadership development, resourcing ministerial education and simplification.
  • Also at Synod was a discussion of an interim report containing proposals for a new parish share scheme. A wide-ranging consultation will now begin.