FiF Director and Secretary in Australia

Stephen Parkinson, Forward in Faith’s National Director, is away from Faith House at present and will not be back until Monday 6th August. He is visiting Australia, where he will be speaking at the Diocesan Conference of the Diocese of The Murray, at a series of meetings of Forward in Faith Australia Diocesan Branches and at the Forward in Faith Australia National Conference in Brisbane at the end of this month. Following that, he will be taking the opportunity of observing the meeting of the Australian General Synod, as it meets to discuss the proposal to consecrate women to the episcopate in the Anglican Church of Australia. In between times, he hopes to take a short holiday as well! During his absence, his assistant, Colin Niblett, is in charge at Faith House. Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, Stephen is able to see and deal with any letters etc which need his attention, but he will naturally be pleased to be spared all but the most urgent correspondence until his return to London.

He will be joined in Australia later this month by Forward in Faith National Secretary Fr Geoffrey Kirk, who will be spending three weeks undertaking a similar programme, aimed at rallying Forward in Faith members down under in the run-up to the Australian General Synod.

Edenham Regional House

Fr Andy Hawes, Chairman of Forward in Faith Lincoln, writes:

‘I wonder if through your column in New Directions I could thank readers for their very generous response to the Edenham Regional House Appeal, which was launched, with the help of Bishop Edwin, in November 1999. I am pleased to say that we have reached out first target of £80,000 and that the first two phases of the work are now complete. Thank you too to all those involved in the Catholic Charities who have supported us this far!

‘Readers will be very welcome to come and see and use the new facilities here. We now have four en-suite bedrooms, two twins and two singles. There is also in the ‘upper rooms’ a separate bathroom (of luxurious proportions), a kitchen, dining room and a sitting room. Anyone wishing to use them should telephone me on (01778) 591358 or write to me at: Edenham Regional House, Church Lane, Edenham, Bourne, Lincolnshire PE10 0IS. As most of the labour is voluntary, we have very reasonable rates!

‘We are now going out to tender for the last phase of our development which is the provision of disabled facilities; the one draw back of the ‘upper rooms’ is that they are located up two flights of stairs! I hope to welcome many FiF folk to Edenham in the months and years to come! Thank you again.’

Subscriptions are due!

Many thanks to all our members who have responded so promptly to May’s subscription reminder. It would be good if all those who have yet to respond did so without any further delay; each year, we have sent second reminders out to numbers of members in November and last year it was good to note that that particular print-run was the smallest ever! What would be even better would be for it to become totally unnecessary, but that state of affairs will only be reached when every single member responds to our renewal form when first it appears!

National Assembly

Letters went out last month to all Registered Parishes and to all Dioceses, asking for the names of their delegates to the Seventh National Assembly, to be held on Friday 12th and Saturday 13th October, at the Emmanuel Centre, Marsham Street, SW1. Registration Forms and the draft programme will then be going out to delegates and the more names we have in place when we do that, the easier that whole exercise will be. One large mailshot is much less time-consuming that thirty small ones, so the sooner those of you required to submit names do so, the easier Colin Niblett’s task at Faith House will be!

The National Assembly Solemn Eucharist will take place in the Church of Christ the King, Gordon Square at 9.30 am on Saturday, 13 October – the Feast of St Edward the Confessor. The principal celebrant will be the Bishop of Fulham and the preacher will Fr Michael Melrose, Rector of St Giles, Reading and Forward in Faith Regional Dean for Oxford.

Other details of the Assembly timetable will emerge in due course, but one thing to which we can look forward will be the opportunity, hopefully on the Saturday afternoon, of saying au revoir to a Flying Bishop and his Flying Buttress! We plan to make a presentation on behalf of Forward in Faith to Bishop Edwin and to Jane, as they enter into their well-deserved and, we trust, long retirement in Lymington.