Wednesday 9 May 2012

Moving on from the wonderful city of Bradford!

Some of you will be aware that last Tuesday I accepted a job offer as the Chaplain to the University of Sunderland,and Associate Minister for Sunderland Minster. After seven years of work at SoulSpace and JustSpace, I had felt it was time to move on, and put some of the skills you have taught me to good use in another gritty, down to earth Northern city!

SoulSpace and JustSpace have been simply the most amazing spiritual and community experiences one could ever hope to experience in ministry. It has been a privilege to have been a part of it for all these years and I look forward to seeing it develop in the coming years.

There is great news that the post in Bradford will definitely be replaced with another Chaplain to the Uni/City centre - and I'm certain that because of the reputation we have built up, this will attract someone with all the qualities SoulSpace expects, an inclusive and progressive priest who will move things forward alongside those who are already involved.

Last night we saw the swearing in of two great new Church wardens, Clive Barret and Helen Appleyard who will work alongside Bishop Nick and Archdeacon in the appointment of a new person. We say goodbye to the wonderful Nina and Anna as churchwardens, what a good job they have done over the years keeping me in check!

I have been in love with the city of Bradford for 23 years, and it will always be my 'hometown' - the place my faith and ministry grew, the place I met Catriona and saw both Angela and Clara come into the world. For all the love and care you have shown me and my family, I am grateful to all of you. Watching many of you grow in spiritual maturity has been a great joy, and watching hundreds of you put your faith into action has made any hardships worthwhile.

I am grateful for all your support and prayers over the last few months as I have been working out what God might be asking of me in the future. I ask that you continue to support us in prayer as we prepare to move on to this exciting and challenging new post (Leaving Bradford in August) - and do make plans to come and visit us in Sunny Sunderland (we will be near a beach!) 

Support each other - show solidarity by supporting SoulSpace and Desmond Tutu House, so they remain a beacon of Christ's liberating love for all.

We have a few month's before we leave, so watch out for farewell services and goodbye walks and parties. I would love people to make up A4 sheets that we can collect into a scrapbook, full of stories of how we met, stories of things we've done, big and small, photos etc - that would mean a lot to us as a family!

If you can make it to our last Christian Aid week 'Beer and Hymns' this Tuesday at the Beehive pub 8pm - that would be a great start!

May the God of justice and peace be always with you!


Rev Chris Howson
Desmond Tutu House
2 Ashgrove

1 comment:

  1. Great to hear about your amazing journey. Thanks for sharing and for all you do. All the best for your new ministry. Love Irenee & family in Lancaster.