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22nd June 2018

Diocesan Bishop looks forward to an exciting week of events

The Church of England in Lancashire is about to embark on an exciting week of events and the Diocesan Bishop, Rt. Rev. Julian Henderson, Bishop of Blackburn, recently wrote to parishes across the County anticipating what lies ahead.

In the space of one week, the annual ordinations of Priests and Deacons will take place alongside the Consecration and Installation of the new Bishop of Lancaster, Rev. Dr Jill Duff.

Bishop Julian recently wrote to all parishes reflecting on the celebrations to come. He wrote:

“From June 27, those to be ordained to the Diaconate and Priesthood will be entering into Retreat at Whalley Abbey. The Bishop of Burnley, Rt. Rev. Philip North, and I are co-leading the Ordination Retreat this year and are basing our talks on the letter to the Philippians, a wonderful epistle of joy written in a prison cell."

“On Friday June 29 at 11am, Jill Duff is consecrated a Bishop in the Church of God in York Minster and I hope many in the diocese will make the journey to York to share in that wonderful celebration of ministry and to show our prayerful support for Jill, Jeremy and their two boys.”

“The next day, June 30, witnesses the ordination of men and women to the diaconate and priesthood in our Cathedral Church in Blackburn.”

“A total of eight deacons will be ordained at 10.30am and eight priests at 2.30pm. It would be wonderful to see as many of you as possible at either or both Ordinations as we celebrate the call of God to ordained ministry.”

“On the Sunday and Monday evenings – July 1 and July 2 - there are two additional ordinations on the grounds of our commitment to mutual flourishing and the five guiding principles.”

“I will ordain a conservative evangelical and Bishop Philip will preach at All Hallows, Bispham. The next day Bishop Philip will ordain a traditional catholic and I will preach at St Anne’s, St Anne’s.”

“And even then it’s not over! On Tuesday July 3 we will gather again with great joy welcome Jill Duff as Bishop of Lancaster as she is Installed in our Cathedral Church.”

“The Service of the Word, with interview and testimony, will be at 7.30pm and Jill will be the preacher. This will be the formal start of her ministry among us, though she is appearing at different gatherings before then, as part of her informal induction and preparation for the start of her episcopal ministry.”

“What a week! It would be lovely to see you as much as possible, as we enter into the joy and celebration of God’s call to those whom he is sending to be part of the team here.”

“And pray that there may be some who through those special moments themselves hear God’s call to a new form of service. As we celebrate vocation may His voice be heard; “Follow me and I will make you…”

  • All parishes received specific communications about arrangements for both the Consecration and the Installation services and should have actioned as appropriate by now.
  • For more on all the above events as they happen keep an eye on the Diocesan website for the latest news and links to pictures and videos.
  • For a video greeting from Rev. Dr Jill Duff to the Diocese, visit our YouTube channel – search online for ‘YouTube’ and ‘Blackburn Diocese’.


Ronnie Semley

22 June 2018