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Bishops visit South African churches

The Bishop of Whitby, the Rt Revd Paul Ferguson and the Bishop of Selby, the Rt Revd Dr John Thomson. Photo by Kippa Matthews.

Thursday 17th September 2015

The Bishop of Whitby, the Rt Revd Paul Ferguson and the Bishop of Selby, the Rt Revd Dr John Thomson, will be visiting clergy and churches in South Africa from 26th September to 4th October. The Diocese of York has a long relationship with the church in South Africa, and is twinned with the Dioceses of False Bay, Saldanha Bay, and Cape Town.

Bishop Paul will be visiting the Diocese of False Bay, accompanied by the Diocese’s Lay Training Advisor the Revd Canon Angela Bailey, and the Revd Pauline Percy, curate at Kirklevington and Crathorne.  Bishop Paul, Angela and Pauline will visit diocesan projects, rural communities in the Diocese, and the prison where Nelson Mandela spent his last months in captivity.  They will take part in the Diocese’s Ordination service and lead a lay training day and two clergy training seminars.

Bishop Paul said, “This will be my first visit to Cleveland’s link diocese of False Bay, returning the visit of Bishop Margaret Vertue who was here a few months ago.  I am very pleased that Canon Angela Bailey and the Revd Pauline Percy will form a team with me, bringing their special gifts including expertise in education and training.  I look forward to joining the ranks of people from the Diocese of York who have been inspired and learned much from being with our partners in South Africa.”

Bishop John will be visiting the Diocese of Saldanha Bay, accompanied by the Diocese’ Director of Vocations, the Revd David Mann and Children and Youth Work officer the Revd Andy Bowden.  They will be leading a clergy conference to explore Anglican character, vocation, witness and mission, and a training day for lay people.

Bishop John said, “I am delighted to be returning to South Africa where I spent time as a trainee priest and on the staff of the seminary, St Paul’s College, Grahamstown. I am looking forward to meeting up with old friends and seeing how we can learn from each other as Christian companions on a common journey in very different contexts.”

Both Bishops hope to be Tweeting about their experiences in South Africa: you can follow Bishop Paul on Twitter @pjf1307 and Bishop John @john59thomson.


For further information please contact Eleanor Course, York Diocese Communications Officer:

01904 699530, 07946 748702.


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