Friday, 20 July 2012

The Bishop, the sun and Southwark

The Needlemakers Company is very fortunate in our Chaplain, Rt Revd Christopher Chessun.  He has been Chaplain to the Company for over 20 years and is much respected and loved by the Livery. We were delighted when he was confirmed as Bishop of Southwark in January 2011 and enthroned at Southwark Cathedral in March 2011.

When he offered to hold an informal reception at his house during my year it is no exaggeration to say that I grabbed at it.  Clearly others felt the same as it was the fastest sell out of any event we have had. If you are thinking grand palace, you are mistaken. It is a large and pleasant house, right in the heart of Streatham and reflects the thoughtful and down to earth quality of the man.

Clearly he has a hotline to somewhere as the sun shone and we were able to stand out in the garden until time to eat a delicious cold buffet.  I tasked my Consort (aka John) to buy the wine and judging by the smiling faces his choices were popular!

It was a very joyous evening. Even more pleasant was to be able to hand over a cheque from the Company towards the creation of new copes for the bishops in the diocese.  We were also delighted to meet the Dean of Southwark, the Very Reverend Andrew Nunn and he has invited us to meet the broderers at Southwark Cathedral in due course – and of course to see the finished articles.

Something about Southwark: Southwark Diocese was formed in 1905 and now covers 317 sq miles, including Kingston, Woolwich and Croydon and just under two and half million people live within its borders.  Bishop Christopher is also the lead Bishop for Urban Life and Faith for the Church of England. This offers him an opportunity to contribute to debates and discussions on the importance of the Church’s contribution to urban and public policy within society.

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