Some of you will have already heard, one way or another, that from the autumn, I am to be the new Warden of Launde Abbey and will therefore be leaving the Lordsbridge Team in September. Diocese of Ely | Departure Announcement: The Revd Canon Alison Margaret Myers (elydiocese.org)
For those that don’t know, Launde Abbey is a retreat house of national spiritual and historic importance, settled in a fold of the Leicestershire countryside near Rutland Water. My brief is to bring it out of the pandemic, to develop its vision and to ensure its future as a place of prayer and hospitality and as a centre for extended Christian community that resources many. You can find out more about the place and what it does at www.laundeabbey.org.uk . This is a senior post in the diocese of Leicester and I will also be expected to be active in the diocese of Peterborough.
Leaving here, however, will not be easy. I have lived here with my family and been part of the Lordsbridge Team from its inception 11 years ago, first as a Team Vicar and then for the last 4 ½ years as the Team Rector. During that time, I have participated in the richness of church life with many fellow pilgrims and now friends. As Team Vicar, but more particularly as Team Rector, I have had the privilege of leading and developing a team of experienced and creative ministers, and of working with a group of dedicated church wardens. We have served our local communities together and have grown as the people of God in this particular time and place.
Although I will leave in September, this team of lay and ordained ministers and other volunteers remains the same. The vision of the Lordsbridge Team remains the same too – that collectively we are a network of worshipping communities each rooted and engaged in its local context in mission and service; that within this network some of these worshipping communities are largely traditional and some are newer and more experimental, reaching beyond the usual constituency, including now, the digital; and that by sharing and acting together we can do things which could not be done alone.
Over the next few weeks, the core team and I, with the ministry teams in Hardwick and Dry Drayton, will work out the interim provisions for the vacancy. And I hope that once I am installed at Launde you will come to visit. In the meantime, however, I am praying these words from the Lordsbridge Team Collect: ‘Call us onward into your purposes and growth’.