Bishop Nicholas Celebrates “Joyful and Historic” Consecration

Bishops and Dean travel from Salisbury to York for historic image_miniconsecration of the Church of England’s first woman bishop

Speaking from York where he took part in the consecration of the Church of England’s first woman bishop, Bishop Nicholas said he was celebrating a joyful and historic day.

The Right Revd Libby Lane, the new Bishop of Stockport, was consecrated today at York Minster, at a service as historic as the church it took place in.

Bishop Graham and Bishop Edward were also among those taking part in the consecration, as was former Bishop of Salisbury, the Right Revd Dr David Stancliffe. Dean of Salisbury, June Osborne, also attended the consecration service.

Bishop Nicholas said, “It was enormous privilege to be one of the Bishops who laid hands on Libby, and thereby to consecrate her a bishop.

“This was a historic occasion and a joyful one, surrounded by prayer and a very strong affirmation of women in ministry.

“I pay tribute to the decades of sacrifice and hard work which so many undertook to make today’s consecration possible. England is now the tenth country to have a female Anglican bishop.”

Bishop Libby said she had been encouraged by the thousands of messages of support she has received since the news of her appointment was announced. She said,“Archbishop Sentamu has observed,‘the way that we show our faith and our love for one another is with two simple things, prayer and parties’.

“Today is an occasion of prayer and of party – and I am thrilled that so many want to share in both. I cannot properly express how encouraged I have been in the weeks since the announcement of my nomination, by the thousands of messages I have received with words of congratulation, support and wisdom.

“Many those who have been in touch have little or no contact with the Church of England; not all have been people of faith, but every one of them has felt this moment marks something important. That all this personal – and media – attention has centred on me has been a little overwhelming: I cannot possibly live up to everyone’s expectation. And so today, at my consecration, I hold on to words of promise from the Bible, a reassurance that all this does not depend on me… ‘the God who calls you is faithful: He will do it’ (1 Thessalonians 5:24).

“My consecration service is not really about me. With echoes of practice which has been in place for hundreds of years in the church, it is a reminder that what I am about to embark on is shared by the bishops around me, by those who have gone before me and those who will come after. It places the ministry of a bishop in the context of the ministry of all God’s people. And most importantly it retells the good news of Jesus, the faithful one, who calls each of us to follow him.

“Please continue to hold me in your prayers as, after the example of St Timothy and St Titus who are celebrated by the Church on this day, I share in work of proclaiming the gospel, in word and action, and bearing witness to the name of Jesus.”


Watch this interview video with Bishop Libby from the morning her appointment was announced in December here.

Listen to an audio interview with Bishop Libby after her consecration here.

Salisbury Diocese Grapevine

Did you know that the latest edition of the Diocese’s Grapevine newsletter – which replaced the old Sarum Link – can be viewed online at the Diocese of Salisbury’s website? Click here to get there!

The diocese also sends out an e-Bulletin: the last edition had Claire and the monthly Memory Cafe held in the Church Hall as the leading article. You can read it here. The e-Bulletin is sent out via email most Tuesdays: to subscribe click here.

Tidworth Community Area Awards

The Tidworth Community Area Awards is the major community event which
gives recognition to those whose voluntary activities help improve the lives of all living in the Community Area and Shipton Bellinger,

Each year the Committee seeks to arrange the Awards Presentation Evening and we are currently planning for 2015. The presentation evening will be held on Wednesday 22nd April at the Wellington Academy.

Please return your nominations as soon as possible and no later than Wednesday 8th April 2015. Nomination Forms can be downloaded below and are also available on

All are welcome to attend on the evening.

Anthony Pickernell (Tony)
Coordinator Tidworth Community Area Partnership


Christmas Tree Festival

This year at St James we are doing something different – a Christmas Tree Festival, and it will transform St JamesTree into a wonderful spectacle of colour, light and the joy of Christmas. The festival will be from Thursday 18th, Friday 19th, and Saturday 20th culminating in our Christmas Carol Service on Sunday 21st December. We will have a raffle in the Church Hall of a Christmas food hamper, Christmas Cake and Chocolate hamper. Coffee/tea and home made cakes will be served in the Church Hall when the festival is open. We invite everyone to come and enjoy the sight of decorated Christmas. Please pass the word and if you wish to help or would like to decorate a tree for the festival please speak to Janet Robinson or give her a ring: 790780.

20 Years of Women Priests

Service in Cathedral will celebrate historic milestone on eve of final approval for women bishops.

20 Years of Women Priests

A special service of Choral Evensong will be held in Salisbury Cathedral on Sunday 16 November at 4.30 pm to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the ordination of women to the priesthood. The service will celebrate and gave thanks for the dedication of women ordained into the Church of England and the achievements of female priests over the past two decades.

Everyone in the Diocese, ordained and lay is invited to join what will be a joyful occasion. Women who were priested in 1994 are invited to robe and process.

The service will providentially take place on the eve of another historic occasion. The promulgation of the Women in the Episcopate Measure at is expected at General Synod the following day.

The Dean of Salisbury, the Very Revd June Osborne, said, “Celebrating 20 years of women priests has been a significant and joyful anniversary for the Church of England this year.

“It is especially poignant that the Diocese of Salisbury will mark our own 20th anniversary on the evening before it finally becomes lawful to make women bishops. People far and wide, inside and outside the church, recognise that women have strengthened and diversified priestly ministry and they rejoice with us in the faithful ministry of women who have served in this diocese over the last two decades.”

The Ven Ruth Worsley, Archdeacon of Wiltshire, looked forward to the future, where it would be normal to see women among the highest ranks of the Church’s hierarchy, but inequalities in ecclesiastical and secular contexts were likely to remain.

“In ten years’ time it will feel normal to have female and male bishops”, said Ruth, “but what else needs to happen for the church to shed its male-dominated image, culture, and theology and become a place of hope and welcome for today’s women?

“In wider society women have made enormous progress in public life and influence, and yet are still dealing with everyday sexism. Looking at both of these arenas, what challenges might we put to the church, and how might we step up as women, in this next stage of the church’s life?”

Canon Jane LLoyd will preach at the celebration.


Another anniversary event will take place on Tuesday 18 November at 7.30 pm in St James’, Southbroom, Devizes, entitled ‘Bishops (Male and Female) – tick. What next for women (and men) in the Church?’ with Hilary Cotton, Chair of Women and the Church (WATCH).