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At a busy Lancaster Priory at the weekend the Anglican Bishop of Lancaster, Rt Rev Dr Jill Duff, launched her new book 'Lighting the Beacons'. 

The launch was attended by many from parishes across the County and beyond, alongside the new Bishop of Blackburn-designate, Rt Rev Philip North; the Roman Catholic Bishop of Lancaster, Paul Swarbrick; the Archdeacons of Lancaster and Blackburn, David Picken and Mark Ireland and the Dean of Women's Ministry for the Diocese, Rev Anne Beverley. 

Behind the scenes organisation was by the Vicar of Lancaster and Assistant Archdeacon of Lancaster, Rev Leah Vasey-Saunders and attendees enjoyed glasses of Prosecco and jazz music as they gathered for the evening. 

Bishop Jill wrote the book during a period of study leave in early 2022. 

It will be published this month by SPCK and you can read more about it and pre-order your copy via this page of the Diocesan website

At the Priory launch, Bishop Philip sat down with Bishop Jill for a Q and A session about how the book came about and what it contains. He began by asking his episcopal colleague: "Why beacons?" 

Bishop Jill responded: "Beacons captured my imagination at an early age when my Mum explained that Rivington Pike, near our home in Bolton, was the site of a beacon which signalled the arrival of the Spanish Armada in the English Channel.

"I love the way that God’s Holy Spirit inhabits our imaginings, and this image of chains of light has resonated with me over the last 10 years; ever since I started praying in earnest for the renewal of faith across the North West."

The book is intended for a wide audience as Bishop Jill explained: "Quite simply, I hope my book will light beacons; fire faith in hearts. Whether readers are new to faith, disappointed or bruised by faith, or aspiring to be a giant of faith."

'Lighting the Beacons' can also be used as a resource in parishes across Lancashire.

"I hope that my book could be used in mid-week groups, book groups in homes or pubs. It’s written in 12 easy-read chapters; each with questions at the end to get the conversation started," added Bishop Jill.

Watch a taster clip of Bishop Jill's Q and A with Bishop Philip's here on Twitter or on Facebook and below is the full Q and A session in a video recorded at the Priory on the night of the book launch. 

Captions from top to bottom for pictures by Ronnie Semley for Blackburn Diocese:

  • Bishop Jill and Bishop Philip pictured at Lancaster Priory after the Q and A session
  • Bishop Jill signing copies of 'Lighting the Beacons' at Lancaster Priory
  • Bishop Jill with her new book, Lighting the Beacons'
  • There was a real buzz as people arrived at Lancaster Priory and prior to the start of the event