Delegates to the XX Synod of the Diocese of the United Kingdom in Central Hall, Westminster, London, on Saturday 12th March, heard how the membership of the Church had risen by 12% in 2010.
Dr Roy Fidge, Diocesan Secretary, submitted a report based upon data taken from the annual return forms from the parishes and missions of the Diocese.
Delegates also heard that although the number of services held throughout the church had actually decreased in 2010 (due to ill health among some of the clergy) attendance had increased significantly especially in non ACC members who are not counted in the 12% increase in ACC Members.
Bishop Mead, commenting upon these figures, urged a slight caution, explaining that because we are numerically small the actual number of people isn’t huge. But nevertheless this figure represented a significant upturn in Church Membership and was a cause for rejoicing.

Those Delegates staying in or near London on the night of Friday 11th, gathered at the Strada Restaurant opposite St Paul’s Cathedral for our Pre-Synod Meal.

The Synod began with the Bishop celebrating a Pontifical High Mass to celebrate the Feast of St Gregory the Great. Fr Howard Marsh (Bolton) deaconed the Mass and Fr William Campbell (Scunthorpe) sub-deaconed.

The Bishop preached and quoting St Gregory the Great’s own words, in his Sermon on the Mystery of the Resurrection, that had Our Lord, through the taunts of those who crucified Him, “… yielding to their insults, then come down from the Cross, He would not have proved to us the power of patience …” and that ” … He continued patient, and evoked our admiration; and He Who refused to descend from the Cross, rose again from the sepulchre.” Reminding his listeners that Patience was a Fruit of the Holy Ghost and that it engendered stability in those who practiced it. That our work as Christians both individually and collectively in the Church was a response to God calling us and expecting us to trust in him and respond with patience despite the difficulties and hardships we must endure. He closed his sermon with the word “we are working to God’s time plan not our own as we do his work as his people.”

In other news the Statement of Accounts were presented by the Treasurer Fr Howard Marsh who reported that total Diocesan Income in 2010 was £27,673 and expenditure £27,003 (Including grants to Missions and Parishes totalling £22,254.)