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Archbishop of York Visits the Diocese of Bradford

Diocese of Bradford

Tuesday 26th November 2013

Next week, The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, will spend two days in the Diocese of Bradford, visiting church schools, meeting faith and civic leaders and seeing for himself some of the innovative ways in which communities are being served by local churches.

Next week, The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, will spend two days in the Diocese of Bradford, visiting church schools, meeting faith and civic leaders and seeing for himself some of the innovative ways in which communities are being served by local churches.


The Bishop of Bradford, the Rt Revd Nick Baines, says, “The Archbishop of York will bring a very particular perspective to the life of this diocese – especially at a time of transition and uncertainty. I look forward to introducing him to some wonderful people and places and expect the encouragement to be mutual. We welcome him to the Diocese of Bradford."


On Thursday 5 December, Archbishop Sentamu is paying a return visit to Bradford Academy (a CofE school with pupils from ages 3 to 18), which he opened in 2008. Then, before meeting at the Cathedral with civic and faith leaders, he’ll visit St Stephen’s, West Bowling and its Shine Community Project, which puts on many wellbeing activities in this Muslim majority area.
In the afternoon, at St Aidan’s Buttershaw, he’ll learn about ‘Jesus Shaped People’ - a church development programme particularly for churches with social housing estate communities. And in the evening he’ll encounter 'The Feast', a Christian charity which works in Keighley to promote community cohesion between Christian and Muslim young people, and empowers them to become peacemakers and to spearhead social change. He’ll then spend the rest of the evening with ‘Inn Churches’ a charity which provides emergency winter shelter in churches for homeless and vulnerable people in the Bradford area. He’ll meet the guests and volunteers (who provide food, beds and support) at this week’s host venue, the Light Church in Little Germany.

On the morning of Friday 6 December, he’ll visit Austwick Church of England Primary School, which is part of an unusual confederation of three church schools who share one headteacher. The other schools are Clapham CE Primary School and Horton-in-Ribblesdale CE Primary School, and children from all three schools will be present as the Archbishop gives a talk, listens to the Confederation orchestra, meets pupils and staff – and stays for lunch.


In the afternoon, he’ll visit Rolls Royce in Barnoldswick, where he will meet managers and shop floor workers for a tour of the facility and will hear about how Rolls Royce supports the local economy.


He’ll then move to Holy Trinity Church Barnoldswick to meet local people for conversation and refreshments. The Archbishop will also bless a foundation stone, presented by children from Barnoldswick CE Primary School, for their proposed new school building.



Media are particularly welcome at Bradford Academy, St Stephen’s, Inn Churches, Austwick School and Barnoldswick visits. Please contact Alison Bogle (07768 110175) if you’d like attend.


Thursday 5 December

9am                        Bradford Academy

The choir will sing a Ugandan greeting song, the Archbishop will meet students who’ve completed the Archbishop’s Young Leaders Award and he’ll bless the ‘Sacred Space’ in the primary part of the school. (The reception and blessing service will be live-streamed to students around school).

10.45am                St Stephen’s West Bowling & Shine Community Project
The church has recently become a centre for Bradford Credit Union – the first church in Bradford to do so. Sarah Hinton, St Stephen’s Community Engagement Co-ordinator, says, “We wanted to respond to the problems and suffering caused by debt and loan sharks, so now people can come into St Stephen’s and sign up to become Credit Union members. The Shine Project also provides a CAP Job Club and  access to computers to look for employment. Many in this area don’t have a computer or IT skills (which they’ll need to access Universal Credit in January), so these sessions provide useful support and training in a pleasant and friendly environment.”

Shine has also started a gardening and environmental project, including ‘grow and eat gardening’ whereby unused pieces of land are made to be productive. The council has given the church permission to take over some old brick planters to grow vegetables and herbs. (A group of Gurkas who live locally attend many of the wellbeing activities at the church. Sarah Hinton says, “Many aren’t aware of the Gurkas who’ve lived in Bradford for a long time; we’re delighted that this church is one of the few places that they feel comfortable coming.”)

Lunchtime             Cathedral meeting with leaders from faith groups, community organisations, education and civic life.
Dean Jerry Lepine says, “I hope that the Archbishop will get to know a lot about Bradford in a short space of time and will also experience the real sense of commitment and desire for improvement that there is in Bradford.”

2.30pm                  ‘Jesus Shaped People’, St Aidan’s Buttershaw.

The programme was developed by Canon Gordon Dey, the retired Vicar of Tong & Holme Wood, and now 25 churches across the country have adopted the model.

6.30pm                  The Feast, Bishopscroft


8pm                        Inn Churches - The Light Church, Jubilee Centre Jermyn Street (off Stott Hill) Bradford BD1 4EJ. 


Friday 6 December

8.30am                  ‘Leading your Church into Growth’ breakfast with Canon Robin Gamble.


11.15am                Church Schools Confederation – Austwick, Clapham and Horton


2-3pm                    Rolls Royce, Barnoldswick (Bankfield Site)
Meet with managers and shop floor workers for a tour of the facility and to hear about how Rolls Royce supports the local economy.


3.10pm                  Holy Trinity Church Barnoldswick for a Q&A session with local people, including ecumenical group, Hope Barlick.  Blessing of Barnoldswick CE Primary School Foundation Stone.


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