The Bishop of Chelmsford has just announced that he has appointed me as a non-residentiary Canon of Chelmsford Cathedral, which begs the question: ‘Is he planning to fire me?’ Six non-residentiary Canons have been appointed and the details are published here. It is an honour and I believe it reflects the importance that Bishop John places on lay education and training for ministry in the Diocese. I used to attend Chelmsford Cathedral as a young boy while at Chelmsford Cathedral Primary School. In those days the Cathedral was a very dark, dusty, gloomy place and my memory is of miserable Thursday morning BCP Morning Prayer; it’s a miracle I ever went near a church again. I was ordained in the Cathedral in 1987 and by then it had become a light, airy and attractive worship space, the old pews had gone and the only items from the old days that I remember are the rather tatty flags, now kept well out of the way. I was licensed to my present role in the Diocese in the Cathedral in 2001.
Unfortunately, I can't attend the collation and installation on August 16th so Bishop John will be licensing me in his chapel on 21st July and then the installation by the Dean will take place at Evening Prayer in the Cathedral on 24th August. My dad Sam is an honorary Canon of St. Edmundsbury Cathedral so we'll get to compare scarfs. 'What larks, eh Pip!'