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St George’s News - Waterlooville’s Parish Magazine

The Website for St George’s Church, Waterlooville and its Parish Magazine St George’s News

Easter 2017 issue

From the Vicar

It was announced on Sunday February 19th that I am to retire as Parish Priest of St. George’s Church at the end of June.  With my age no secret, some members of the congregation had half expected this announcement, and some had asked when it’s likely to be, but it still came as a bit of a shock. After 13 years here, Lynda and I are moving in the summer to a house in Lee-on-the-Solent - an area we don’t know very well but one in which we hope to get involved. For us the move is a mixture of sadness, excitement and very terrifying as we have to move away from our friends at St. George’s and say good-bye to Waterlooville. It’s been a great place to live and a real privilege to worship with you – we will miss you very much indeed.

As far as the Church is concerned - what happens next? The Churchwardens have already met with the Archdeacon, who has assured them that I will be replaced, but it won’t be straight away. The PCC is now drawing up a Parish Profile, which will be used by the Bishop when he advertises the post or offers it as a Bishop’s Nominee. The Profile is extremely important as it lays down what the PCC is looking for in a new incumbent and it helps any potential incumbent to decide if St. George’s is the place to minister.  After Easter the PCC will meet with the Area Dean to approve the Profile and to decided how the appointment process will work. The post can be advertised in newspapers like The Church Times. This opens the post to any Priest from across the country. A short list would then be drawn up and the candidates interviewed. There are usually at least two PCC representatives on the interview panel along with the Bishop and the Archdeacon.  These reps may or may not be the Churchwardens. An alternative and shorter way for an appointment to be made is for the PCC to ask the Bishop for his nominee. After considering suitable priests known to him, the Bishop will invite a priest to meet with the Churchwardens who can either accept of reject the nominee. If necessary they can ask for further nominees or can decide to begin advertising.  

It will take time and a lot of prayer for an appointment to be made. It’s really important that the right priest is appointed – someone who will respect the Catholic style of worship and who will be happy for the Church to be used for community, school and musical events. In the meantime the services will continue of course, and the Area Dean is to work with the Churchwardens and Fr. Ray in drawing up a list of available clergy. Although there will be some changes and may be some challenges ahead, St. George’s is a vibrant and happy place to live and worship. Please pray for the Bishop, the Churchwardens and all those with responsibility for making a new appointment. Please pray too for Lynda and myself as we move to the next stage in our lives feeling both lonely and anxious.

Fr. Mike