News

Please find all the latest news from the Diocese of Bristol

Parties in the park

First published 11th May 2015

In the last couple of years,Churches Together in Greater Bristol (CTGB) have helped set up three city-wide gatherings in the open air, under the banner of Together for Bristol.


Bishop Mike licenses new church centre

First published 11th May 2015

At a special celebration service on Sunday 10 May, Bishop Mike dedicated and licensed a new church centre in Stoke Gifford for public worship, marriages, baptisms and funerals.


Yate away day for people with learning disabilities

First published 11th May 2015

On Saturday 9 May at St Nicholas Family Centre in Yate, Prospects ministry groups from across the west came together to celebrate Jesus resurrection with a day of workshops and celebrations.


Ecumenical prayer of disabled people

First published 11th May 2015

Thanks to Auriol Britton for supplying this ecumenical prayer of disabled people.


Disability Sunday 2015

First published 11th May 2015

Disability Sunday is a fantastic opportunity for us to highlight issues around disability and to encourage what it means to be a truly welcoming Church.


Podcast: interview with Bishop Mike

First published 11th May 2015

There is an issue with the morality of all pornography but while there is pornography for so-called consenting adults, don't be fooled into thinking that children will not access it online.


My Wild Crafty Cathedral

First published 5th May 2015

On Wednesday 27 May, Bristol Cathedral will host Crafty Cathedral a fun day for children and families to get arty and creative during the half term holiday.


Bristol church raises over £8,000 to help feed hungry children

First published 29th April 2015

More than 8,000 has been raised by a Bristol church to help feed hungry children in its parish.


Bishop's Letter: Protecting our children: the dark arts of negative influence…

First published 28th April 2015

My heart skipped a beat when I heard on the radio earlier today that 10% of 12-13 year old children fear that they may have an addiction to pornography and a similar proportion have actually taken part in a sexually explicit video clip.


Discerning your vocation: God's calling

First published 24th April 2015

Sunday 26 April 2015 is Vocations Sunday. Revd Nicola Stanley reflects on how we might discern a call to ministry, and importantly how we can might help others recognise their own gifts.


Trinity Sunday

First published 20th April 2015

The Trinity is the key idea of Christianity - that God is revealed in the three persons of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.Teaching the Trinity Collective worship resources


Shavuot

First published 20th April 2015

Shavuot, also called 'The Feast of Weeks', is the Jewish festival celebrating the time God gave Moses the Torah - the biblicalbooks ofGenesis, Exodus, Leviticus Numbers and Deuteronomy.Information on how Jews celebrate


Pentecost

First published 20th April 2015

Pentecost is celebrated 40 days after Easter when Christians remember the descent of the third person of the Trinity - the Holy Spirit.


Isra and Mi'raj

First published 20th April 2015

These are the Muslim celebrations of the Prophet Muhammad's 'night journey' from Mecca to Jerusalem on an amazing horse and then up to heaven.


Ascension

First published 20th April 2015

Ascension Day is one of the main Christian Holy Days. It celebrates the human body of Jesus (God the Son) going up to heaven to join God the Father 40 days after the Resurrection.


Peace Education

First published 16th April 2015

Peace education covers a range of work with young people, from inner peace and mindfulness to an understanding of issues of global justice, and is inextricably linked to the fundamental British values of the rule of law, mutual respect and tolerance.


Faith and dance

First published 16th April 2015

Want to offer pupils a different way to engage with faith?


Bishop Lee serves the homeless at Swindon Night Shelter

First published 13th April 2015

As part of the Church of England's Wash day initiative, Bishop Lee Rayfield spent the evening of Good Friday with guests and volunteers at the Swindon Night Shelter.


Is God calling you to something new?

First published 13th April 2015

Ahead of Vocations Sunday on 26 April, Revd Dr Emma Ineson considers how Jesus called Peter and how this might shed light on how he might call you.


The desire for meaning

First published 4th April 2015

While the story of Jesus has been there in the background, it was never anything more to me than a story. I guess thats not altogether surprising as the daughter of an agnostic and an atheist.When I think about it, the story of Christ has been a fain


Uniting our sufferings

First published 3rd April 2015

It was the realisation that they were both potty about God that brought them to a new and wonderful place in their own relationship. For 'God is Love, and those who live in love live in God and God lives in them.'Can there be a point to suffering? Wh


Practical love: Bristol Noise 2015

First published 2nd April 2015

Every May bank holiday weekend, something extraordinary happens in Bristol. Hundreds of Christians from dozens of churches come together to serve their communities over three packed days of social action.


Bishop's Letter: Science, faith and the resurrection of Jesus

First published 2nd April 2015

Bishop Lee describes the place the resurrection holds for him as a scientist and disciple of Jesus.


Follow me - but where Lord?

First published 2nd April 2015

How does it feel for a wife with two young boys, recently moved house and well settled in a community, to hear her husband say God has spoken to him?This is my third go at producing a piece for 10,000 Voices.


Easter update on the Children's Ministry in the Church of Uganda

First published 1st April 2015

Richard Rukundo, Provincial Children's Worker from the Church of Uganda, visited Bristol in 2014.


God calls us all

First published 1st April 2015

Vocations Sunday is the day for churches to encourage everyone to reflect, discover and recognise God's call to them. The next Vocations Sunday day is 26 April 2015.


Hope and doubt

First published 1st April 2015

Doing this helps me ask some of the questions that Ive had in my own mind for a long time.Faith has always been part of the landscape. I was brought up in a family of faith, went to church, Sunday school, wed quite often have clergymen round for brea


Bishop Lee swaps washing feet for washing dishes

First published 31st March 2015

Its a great way to show that Christians are not afraid of getting their hands dirty in the service of others and demonstrating what loving your neighbour really means.


Our Journey to the Cross 2015

First published 31st March 2015

Revd Howard Jameson built on the Experience Easter at his local primary school by matching the Stations of the Cross with photographs of familiar local places.


Wilderness times

First published 31st March 2015

Throughout all of his illness, he never lost his faith, his confidence in God, his desire to serve God, or even his sense of humour. When his physical strength had gone, he remained a strong man; finding his strength in God alone.Growing up in a Chri


Easter: Just a story?

First published 30th March 2015

Anita Dobson, Family Worker at Christ Church Downend, reflects on the 'story' of Easter...As I was thinking about the Easter story, I was aware how uncomfortable that word sounds.


With Jesus beside, before and behind

First published 30th March 2015

It's not easy but underneath it all I can keep an optimism. I'm working to try to give back a little of what I've received, especially to those whom society tends to ignore.


A hound of heaven

First published 28th March 2015

Finally, in despair, I phoned a retired teacher friend saying I was going mad. Her response was simple: she chuckled, saying, You have a hound of heaven on your trail...I had survived the stormy waters of adolescence as an adopted child and had sudde


A Church for this generation

First published 27th March 2015

The Church of England faces great challenges but it is also a time of opportunity.


I looked back and realised

First published 27th March 2015

One day I looked back over the previous few weeks and realised.Having grown up in a non-churchgoing family in the Midlands, church was not something that impinged on my life at all until we moved to Bristol in my late 20s. Peter, my husband, had been


When I am weak I am strong

First published 26th March 2015

But one day it hit me how much I was loved by God - in a personal way, warts and all.I grew up in a loving Christian family. My father is a priest in the Church of England and we moved to several parishes in the Chichester Diocese when I was young.I


Be still, my soul

First published 25th March 2015

My favourite hymn is called Be still, my soul. It points to the fact that we all, whether we like it or not, most of us, have crosses to bear. There are things to deal with that we carry throughout our lives.Its been there ever since childhood, as lo


Seeds were sown

First published 24th March 2015

At that very moment it was quite clear, like the proverbial bolt from the blue, that I was being called.My teenage years were spent in the 1960s and so I was greatly influenced by the huge changes to society, the do as you like, never had it so good


Dedicated to the cause

First published 23rd March 2015

All the pain, betrayal, hate and everything else that I had bottled up over the years vanished like a popped balloon.I was raised in a Christian family and although my childhood was happy I was incredibly shy. In my teenage years, my closest friend m


Spritz of destiny

First published 21st March 2015

I realised once you accept the blessing you can understand God's rest, his peaceA few years back I was mega stressed and basically refused to let God talk to me. I got into the mindset of hating myself and this quietly spiraled over a few months to t


Stop, just breathe

First published 20th March 2015

My world of thought had taken me back to my pressing questions of the time. I had been ordained for some years and I had been reflecting deeply on purpose and place, both big and small questions about life. My life. Questioning my vocation. Thinking


Encouraging engagement between science & Christians

First published 19th March 2015

The Bishop of Swindon, Rt Revd Lee Rayfield has warmly welcomed the announcement of a three-year programme to help promote greater relationship between faith and science.


The barrel of the spear gun

First published 19th March 2015

I certainly believe that God is sovereign and knows whats going to happen and has a plan. But I dont think Ive ever really felt strongly "that is a thing I should do or a place I should go." Yetwith hindsight I can really see how God has used past ex


Report on Bristol's response to food poverty

First published 18th March 2015

A recent report released by the 5K Partnership provides an review of food poverty across Bristol, reflecting the position in 2014.


Quietly, bringing peace

First published 18th March 2015

I have never felt such joy and peace and I know that God was truly in my life and that I was filled with His Spirit.A few years ago I had the most amazing experience. Two people from another church were praying over me that I would be filled with the


Making the jump

First published 17th March 2015

The chance to have a home cooked meal was a great help for making the initial jump, as student food at our flat was as bad as you might think!I am from a non-practising Christian family - Christmas, Christenings, weddings and funerals were as much ch


Made welcome

First published 16th March 2015

I had attended the local Congregational Chapel until my my teens and then, like so many young people, gradually drifted away. Work and a busy social life had squeezed out any thoughts of church.It all began with a marriage proposal, where it will end


A member of the family

First published 14th March 2015

As most of us find, life has not been easy. Hardship, divorce, loss of loved ones - all proved difficult to cope with and my prayers often contained the question why? and tears often accompanied prayers. But my faith was like a crutch, and I never fe


Acceptance

First published 13th March 2015

I have experienced both God's healing and felt His power in my life. I trust him.Some years ago I developed a bad back. I prayed, tried physio and a chiropractor in vain. A very good friend suggested that I went to Harnhill, a local centre for Christ


A mid-life crisis?

First published 12th March 2015

It was a confusing time. Its a big decision, it changes ones life completely. Its a sacrificial calling; I knew that it was my calling but my family would be the ones to make the sacrifice.I think we were what would be called nominal Christians my p


An opened door

First published 11th March 2015

And I thought, What am I waiting for? This is the opportunity I want, this is the way to step forward.I was born in the fifties when everyone always went to Sunday school but my journey into faith began in about 1989 when the good Lord God in his inf


A place of belonging

First published 9th March 2015

The sharing of experiences and learning about other peoples stories has helped me and, I hope, others too.My journey to rediscover my faith started just under two years ago after the unexpected loss of my youngest son. I was lost and not sure where t


Rocking the boat

First published 7th March 2015

Why would I want to rock the boat? Why would I want to change things now? Why, when everything seemed to be going so well, would I possibly want to consider becoming ordained?It's been a long road to travel, and I won't lie, at times it's been really


The deep joy of knowing Him

First published 6th March 2015

My prayers of despair to God included a complaint that if this was the job He wanted me to do, then perhaps he could have prepared me better.My wife and I have been Christians since the age of 16. We were both brought up in loving but non-church goin


Exploring our faith: stories from our churches

First published 5th March 2015

The conversations about our faith instigated by our diocesan theme of Creating Confidence in Evangelism and further inspired by the visit of the Archbishop of Canterbury.


Confidence in our Church's Mission

First published 5th March 2015

Revd Dr Michael Lloyd, Principal of Wycliffe Hall attended Diocesan Synod on 28 February and gave a fascinating, insightful and at times extremely humorous address on why he has continued confidence in the mission of the Church.


General Synod Report March 2015

First published 5th March 2015

Revd Chris Dobson reports on February's General Synod, which opened with a moving address from Archbishop Bashar Warda, Chaldean Diocese of Erbil in Iraq.


A loyal and trusted friend

First published 5th March 2015

Because of some past experiences I always felt guilty and not a very good person although I tried hard to be nice and please people. But God knew what I needed was encouragement, love and acceptance.Back in the 1950s most children went to Sunday scho


Becky Watts: statement from Bishop Mike

First published 4th March 2015

Statement from the Rt Revd Mike Hill, Bishop of Bristol, in response to the latest developments in the tragic Becky Watts investigation.


Swimming in deep mystery

First published 4th March 2015

For me, faith is all about asking questions. Its not a kind of house you build and then you move in and there are the walls and the door and it all feels safe. It's much more like swimming and not knowing where the bottom is...its constantly mysterio


Bringing in the bacon

First published 3rd March 2015

Retired priest, John Ware, recounts how a link visit in 1985 was the start of a 30 year friendship with a final twist in the tail.


The big pang theory

First published 3rd March 2015

Life was good to me well, until I turned 15. I left home and started this journey of discovery, trying to find the true meaning of our existence. I was born in the 60s and maybe it was something to do with the time did the people that spoke of peace


Voices: God's outstretched hand

First published 2nd March 2015

I realise now that not everyone has to go through a marriage breakdown like me to come to know God - but I do know that if you truly turn to Him, He will be there for you.Id like to think that the hand of God was on me from the beginning. I was born


Taking refuge under His wings

First published 28th February 2015

Some six years on from diagnosis, the pathology results suggest the cancers are still there, but to me and I am not in some false denial they have just become numbers.I set my heart on becoming a doctor at the age of 12 years. I missed a lot of the


Changing priorities

First published 27th February 2015

I now realise that real faith is a transformation - I now look at everything in a different way.I have always had some faith but I didn't used to really understand what that meant. I occasionally attended church but always felt a bit out of place and


The reality of Jesus Christ

First published 26th February 2015

A new heartwas given to me and have been following Jesus ever since. That does not mean I am always happy, but day to day I know a joy that no suffering or circumstance can take away.I happened to walk into a church one sunny September morning and he


The spark

First published 25th February 2015

I resigned from my job which was making me thoroughly unhappy. I had nothing lined up but I knew I had to take a leap of faith. People thought I was reckless, but when I answered with my leap of faith explanation I knew in my heart it was the right d


A tough choice

First published 24th February 2015

So we ended up sitting in their service, singing songs that were alien to me, a communion service, body and blood whats all that about? But he preached a message and the message was that in Christ you can have a new start. I thought, I so badly need


An eye-opener

First published 23rd February 2015

For a fleeting instant I had a feeling of warmth, peace, welcome and belonging. It was so brief that afterwards I wasnt sure I had actually felt it, so I soon dismissed it from my mind, assuming Id imagined it.My wife Wendy joined our local church, S


Faithfulness

First published 21st February 2015

But God was not finished with me; he sent a man called Paul to be His physical, supportive presence with me.So where do I begin to tell the story of my faith? I dont remember a time when I didnt go to church, even at the age of 12 I felt called by Go


The whole armour of God

First published 20th February 2015

I decided to pray and ask God, if He existed why did I feel so down and what did I need in my life to take away all the negativity that was surrounding me?Even though I believed in God, I didn't have any trust or faith in Him, and experimenting with


Keeping children safe online

First published 18th February 2015

CEOPs website www.thinkuknow.co.uk is a brilliant resource for children, young people, parents, carers and teachers on everything that is online.


Shiny, happy people

First published 18th February 2015

The first time I went to church... It was full of young people and they were kind of shiny and I felt very threatened indeed. They were clapping and happy and I wasnt happy and didnt want to clap.If I ever came across a Christian, Id be as unpleasant


Punchline preachers stand up for Jesus

First published 12th February 2015

Clergy from across the South West took part in a special, one-day comedy workshop at the Christian Resources Exhibition in Exeter.


What is mission shaped ministry?

First published 5th February 2015

The Diocese of Bristol in partnership with other local organisations is planning a new mission shaped ministry course to start locally in the autumn.


Roofbreakers

First published 5th February 2015

Last month the Christian disability charity Through the Roof launched its new Roofbreakers scheme.


How accessible is your church?

First published 5th February 2015

Our Diocesan Disability Adviser, Revd Alice Kemp, is here to help all churches in the Diocese assess and improve their accessibility, particularly for people with disabilities.


Youth ministry in Uganda

First published 4th February 2015

Diane Paddon, a youth worker from Christ Church Downend, reports on her recent trip to Uganda where she got first hand experience of youth ministry in action.


Supporting church leaders in Uganda

First published 3rd February 2015

Bishop Mike led a small team from the Diocese of Bristol to deliver a four-day conference on Christian leadership for delegates from the Church of Uganda in January 2015.


Bishop's Letter: Addressing the deficit

First published 28th January 2015

With Lent in view, this month Bishop Lee turns the spotlight on our vocation to discipleship.A year ago I heard Paula Gooder speak on the subject of discipleship.


Seeking perfection?

First published 24th January 2015

My current favourite joke: A chicken farmer is dismayed to see that his favourite chicken has stopped laying eggs. He tries everything he knows to fix the problem but no success.


God has taken care of the past and the future

First published 16th January 2015

On the day I was baptised, I was in the privacy of my room, speaking aloud to myself saying How do I really know I am forgiven?Suddenly I heard a voice speaking with authority.Do you forgive your father?I come from a broken troubled family with a vio


Diocesan Synod Report - Dec 2014

First published 14th January 2015

The Diocesan Synod met on 6 December 2014 at Holy Trinity Bradley Stoke and was challenged by Bishop Mike to bridge the gap between what we do in our churches and those living and working in our wider communities.


A tribute to Carol Stone

First published 6th January 2015

She was both loved and valued by her ordained colleagues, but equally was loved by the people she served within and beyond the Church.


Revd Carol Stone 1954-2014

First published 5th January 2015

It was with great sadness that people in the Diocese learned of the death of Revd Carol Stone on Saturday 27 December, following a short battle against pancreatic cancer.


The challenge of being humble

First published 5th January 2015

One of the phrases that comes up reasonably regularly in the bible is The Word of the Lord came to... followed by the name of a person.


Stephen Parsons awarded MBE for service to education

First published 1st January 2015

Stephen Parsons, a Director of Diocese of Bristol Academies Trust, has been awarded an MBE in the Queens New Years Honours in recognition of his services to education and the community.


MBE for first female lay minister

First published 1st January 2015

Margaret Williams, who became the Diocese of Bristol's first ever female lay minister 40 years ago, has been awarded an MBE in the Queens New Year Honours for 2015.


Dean's Letter: Epiphany 2015

First published 1st January 2015

The Very Revd Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Bristol Cathedral, writes to the Diocese at the beginning of the new year.Just by the Roman Forum there is a marble arch, nearly 2,000 years old.


#ChristmasMeans 2014: Expect the unexpected!

First published 21st December 2014

The Ven Christine Froude, Archdeacon of Malmesbury, brings us our final #ChristmasMeans reflection. Don't forget toshare your thoughts on Twitter on 24 and 25 December using the #ChristmasMeans hashtag!He was born as a babyTo an ordinary teenage girl


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : God in human form

First published 20th December 2014

Our #ChristmasMeans seriescontinues today with this reflection by Matthew Rushton from Chippenham. It is loosely based onIsaiah 7, particularly verses 11-14.The world is a complicated place. Some days, it shows off with breathtaking beauty a perfect


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : Ssekukkulu… Amazaalibwa…

First published 19th December 2014

During December, different people arereflecting on what Christmas means to them. Here,Martha Nakiranda tells us about Christmas in Uganda.I would like to say that everything I do at Christmas is centred on celebrating Christs birth. My mother tongue


Letter from Uganda

First published 19th December 2014

Richard Rukundo with Dan Jones, Bristol Diocesan Youth Adviser, in the Bristol Diocesan office in 2014.


A quiet but historic day

First published 19th December 2014

The announcement earlier this week of the appointment of Rev'd Libby Lane as Bishop of Stockport is wonderful news for the Church of England and for our wider society.


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : Giving  

First published 18th December 2014

Throughout December, we are sharing different people's reflections on what Christmas means to them. Today youth worker Ysica Savage shares her thoughts.I remember as a child getting so excited about birthday parties. (Didnt we all?) Especially when i


Rome wasn't built in a day

First published 18th December 2014

God loves you the way you are, but He loves you too much to leave you that way. (Quote from an ordination service)I fell in love with Jesus at the age of ten, and I have always had a strong awareness of His presence in my life.Approximately 20 years


Revd Austin Thomas 1923-2014

First published 18th December 2014

People across the Diocese have learned of the sad death of Revd Austin Thomas


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : Happy birthday Jesus!

First published 17th December 2014

Our #ChristmasMeans series of reflections continues with this piece written by Steve Jones, aLay Assistant at Holy Trinity Church in Westbury on Trym.For me the season really starts with the fresh Christmas tree being collected and then spending the


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : Enjoying life at its simplest

First published 16th December 2014

Throughout Decemberdifferent people are reflecting on what Advent and Christmas mean to them. Here, Patience Busingye tells us aboutChristmas celebrations inUganda,with whom the Diocese of Bristol enjoys strong partnership links.When I think of Chris


#ChristmasMeans 2014 : In the bleak midwinter

First published 15th December 2014

This month we are asking people across the Diocese to reflection what Advent and Christmas mean to them. Here, Dan Jones, Diocesan Youth & Children's Adviser, tells us about his favourite Christmas carol.


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