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Diocesan Bishop, Rt Rev. Julian Henderson, has appointed The Venerable David Picken, currently Archdeacon of Newark in the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham, as the new Archdeacon of Lancaster.

Archdeacon David joins The Church of England in Lancashire (Blackburn Diocese) at an important time as we continue to move forward with our Vision 2026 Healthy Churches Transforming Communities. 

He will be installed as the new Archdeacon of Lancaster in a ceremony at Blackburn Cathedral on February 4, 2020. His predecessor, The Venerable Michael Everitt, left the Diocese in the summer to become Canon Pastor of Durham Cathedral. The announcement has also been made in South and Nottingham Diocese.

David, who was installed as the Archdeacon of Newark in 2012, was born in Hednesford, Staffordshire, in 1963 and was educated locally. In 1984 he graduated with a BA Hons in English Literature and Religious Studies from London.

The following year David completed a PGCE (teaching qualification) and married Cathy, also a teacher. After a short teaching career David went to Lincoln Theological College to study for the priesthood.

In his spare time David enjoys cricket and football and is a Manchester United supporter, but takes a keen interest in Mansfield Town FC as well. Full biography at end of story.

Archdeacon David said today: “I am delighted to be asked to become the next Archdeacon of Lancaster. While there are many exciting things happening in Southwell and Nottingham Diocese, I felt a clear sense of calling when this new role was drawn to my attention.

“I will be sharing in the work on missional growth in churches; in particular with children and young people. I will also work very closely with the schools in the diocese and will be the Chair of the Diocesan Board of Education, a role I have fulfilled latterly here. Taken together, these are opportunities I simply could not resist.”

Speaking about the Diocesan Vision 2026 Healthy Churches Transforming Communities he said: “The Vision provides clear priorities, through making disciples, being witnesses and growing leaders for Jesus Christ. I look forward to working with colleagues on the Bishop’s Leadership Team, and clergy and laity from across the Diocese, to further Vision 2026 work.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to my predecessor, The Venerable Michael Everitt, and give thanks to God for his service to the Diocese in Lancashire.”

Archdeacon David added: “I am looking forward to getting to know people in parishes across the County. We have family connections in Lancashire and I’ve been a lifelong fan of the County Cricket Club. My childhood hero was Clive Lloyd, LCCC and West Indies Captain.”

David Picken will be one of two Archdeacons in the Diocese. The Venerable Mark Ireland is the Archdeacon of Blackburn. More information on the role of an Archdeacon in our Diocese can be found at the end of story.

Bishop Julian said today: “I am delighted that David, together with his wife Cathy, will be joining us here in the Diocese of Blackburn. Alongside my colleagues on the Bishop’s Leadership Team I look forward to working with him.

“David brings a wealth of experience and we will all benefit from his skills as our work towards Vision 2026 continues at what is a real time of God’s favour for our Diocese in terms of the work that many people are doing. There are numerous examples of encouragement that can be seen across the Diocese.

“Please remember David and Cathy in your prayers as they prepare to leave Southwell and Nottingham Diocese.”

The Bishop of Lancaster, Rt Rev. Dr Jill Duff, also welcomed the new Archdeacon of Lancaster, saying: “I am so much looking forward to working with David. I am impressed by his deep catholic spirituality, his heart for mission and his passion for education and rural ministry. He brings a wealth of Archidiaconal wisdom from Southwell and Nottingham for the flourishing of the Lancaster Archdeaconry in this new season.”

And David’s new Archidiaconal colleague, Archdeacon Mark, added: "David's knowledge and experience from his time in Southwell and Nottingham will be invaluable to help hit the ground running in this Diocese at what is a busy and exciting time. 

“I'm delighted to welcome David to the team here in our Diocese and I am really looking forward to working with him. In the meantime, I will be praying for David and Cathy as they prepare to make the move."


Biographical information

David, who was installed as the Archdeacon of Newark in 2012, was born in Hednesford, Staffordshire, in 1963 and was educated locally. In 1984 he graduated with a BA Hons in English Literature and Religious Studies from London.

The following year David completed a PGCE and married Cathy, also a teacher. After a short teaching career, including a time in Retford, David went to Lincoln Theological College to study for the priesthood. In 1990 David was ordained deacon and served as a curate in the Worth Team Ministry in Chichester diocese.

In 1993 he became a Team Vicar in Wordsley in Worcester Diocese. Here he pioneered a church plant and was a half-time hospital chaplain. In 1997 David was appointed Team Rector within the same team and became Area Dean in 2001.

In 2004 David moved to High Wycombe as Team Rector. He served as Area Dean until moving to Southwell and Nottingham and was made an Honorary Canon of Christ Church in Oxford in 2011.

In his spare time, David enjoys cricket and football and is a Manchester United supporter but he also takes a keen interest in Mansfield Town FC as well.

His wife Cathy is a nationally accredited practitioner for ‘Godly Play’. She is also a Trustee of Lighthouse, an annual Children’s summer event attended by more than 1000 children.

David will be installed as the Archdeacon of Lancaster on February 4, 2020 at Blackburn Cathedral.


Further background information

The Church of England in Lancashire is split into two 'archdeaconries' - the Archdeaconry of Blackburn covers the south of the region, while the Archdeaconry of Lancaster covers the north of the region. Each Archdeaconry is sub-divided into 'Deaneries'.

Archdeacons also take particular responsibility for buildings, including church buildings; the welfare of clergy and their families and the implementation of diocesan policy within an archdeaconry.

In his new role Archdeacon David will work closely with churches from the following Deaneries: Blackpool, Garstang, Kirkham, Lancaster and Morecambe, Poulton, Preston and Tunstall as well as serving the whole Diocese as a key member of the Bishop's Leadership Team.

 

 

Ronnie Semley, October 2019