Communications Update - April 25th 2005 A monthly news bulletin from the Communications Unit, Church House, London Feel free to forward this to others, or to use in diocesan or parish newsletters or magazines This news bulletin is published monthly and issued to members of General Synod, recipients of the e-mailed daily press summary, within the National Church Institutions’ All Staff bulletin and to parish magazines via the http://www.parishpump.co.uk website. Please scroll down to read items. Comments, please, to Peter Crumpler, Director of Communications on firstname.lastname@example.org This month’s contents: The Church and the General Election Best wishes for the new Pope Good results from the Church Commissioners Practical advice for Vicars and Curates Work in progress on Premier Christian Radio Women bishops study programme goes on-line Church criticises Select Committee report Church House Bookshop National Worship Development Officer appointed Support for „A Place of Refuge‟ Communications training The Church and the General Election The Church of England website now includes a General Election section with a list of relevant General Synod resolutions including those on the environment, global poverty, criminal justice and young people, with links to supporting documents. The section also includes prayers for use during the campaign and a link to the Churches Together in Britain & Ireland election website. It can be accessed from the home page of http://www.cofe.anglican.org Shortly before the campaign was launched, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, issued an open letter urging party leaders to avoid political campaigns based on the exploitation of fear. The letter can be read at: http://www.archbishopofcanterbury.org/releases/050331.htm Best wishes for the new Pope The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams has offered his best wishes and prayers for Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as the successor to Pope John Paul II. He said he looked forward to working with the new Pope “to build shared understanding between our churches in the service of the Gospel and the goal of Christian unity.” Dr Williams described Pope Benedict XVI as “a theologian of great stature, who has written some profound reflections on the nature of God and the church. His choice of the name Benedict suggests he wants to connect his vision of the church to the monastic spirit of service and contemplation.” Good results from the Church Commissioners The Church Commissioners - who manage assets worth more than £4 billion on behalf of the Church of England - achieved a return of 13.6 per cent on their investments in 2004. This placed them in the top three per cent of more than 700 similar funds. As a result of this above-average performance over the last ten years, the fund is able to distribute £37 million more each year to the Church than if the investments had performed only at the industry average. The Commissioners contribute around 18p in the pound of the cost of running the Church. The Church Commissioners have also completed the sale of their Millbank site in central London to the House of Lords for £65 million. They will move out of 1 Millbank in 2007, when around 100 staff will join other staff of the National Church Institutions in refurbished offices in Church House, Great Smith Street. More information at: http://www.cofe.anglican.org/news/ *The Church Commissioners will publish their Report and Accounts for 2004 on Thursday April 28 th. It will then be available at http://www.cofe.anglican.org/about/churchcommissioners Practical advice for Vicars and Curates Two new books from the Church of England offer practical advice for men and women from beginning life as ordained ministers, through to leading a successful parish and beyond. The Curate’s Guide and The Vicar’s Guide combine essential information, practical survival tips and theological reflection all grounded in the writers‟ experience. The Curate’s Guide and The Vicar’s Guide are published by Church House Publishing, priced £11.99 and £14.99 respectively, and are available from all Christian bookshops and Church House Bookshop, 31 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BN, tel. 020-7898 1300, e mail email@example.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>, or on the web at: www.chbookshop.co.uk <http://www.chbookshop.co.uk> (mail order available). Work in progress on Premier Christian Radio A series of interviews on the mission of the Church of England are being broadcast on Premier Christian Radio each Thursday evening at around 6.30 pm. Called „Work in Progress,‟ the interviews cover topics including children‟s work, education, mission and vocation. All the interviews are available after broadcast on the Premier Radio website at: http://www.premier.org.uk/wip Premier is available on three MW frequencies (1305, 1332, 1413 AM) in the London area, nationally on Freeview (channel 96) Sky digital and NTL, and worldwide via its website. Women bishops study programme goes on-line A study programme to help parishes, deaneries and dioceses engage with the Rochester report, Women Bishops in the Church of England?, has been published on the Church of England website. The study programme is intended as part of the process of discussion about women in the episcopate that began with two General Synod debates on the issue in February. The Synod voted to take note of the report Women Bishops in the Church of England? and to have a further debate in July. The material at http://www.cofe.anglican.org/info/papers/womenbishops/ is aimed at recognising the range of issues involved in the debate. Church criticises Select Committee report The Church of England issued a critical response to the House of Commons Science and Technology select committee report on Human Reproductive Technologies and the Law. Speaking as Vice Chair of the Church of England's Mission and Public Affairs Council, the Bishop of Southwark, the Rt Revd Tom Butler said: “The Church of England would oppose strongly any proposals that tend to erode proper priority for the welfare of the child or that embrace a view of children as consumer commodities. “Sex selection for social reasons would have serious consequences for society as well as for families. From a Christian perspective, the child is a gift from God and should always be regarded as an individual, not as an extension of parental consumer choice. Parents need to be left to receive and accept their children just as they are, not be led into believing they can select children as they would a customised personal accessory.” Church House Bookshop The Archbishops' Council has announced that it is entering discussions with potential purchasers with a view to selling Church House Bookshop, Great Smith Street, London, as a going concern. The decision is in line with the Council's ongoing review of its activities and its desire to focus on core functions. Church House Bookshop is widely recognised as one of the UK‟s leading Christian bookshops. Its reputation is based on high levels of customer service delivered by knowledgeable staff, a broad range of stock - including the complete range of Church House Publishing and General Synod publications - its mail-order department, and website www.chbookshop.co.uk <http://www.chbookshop.co.uk/> National Worship Development Officer appointed The Revd Peter Moger, Vicar of Godmanchester (Ely diocese) since 2001 and previously Precentor of Ely Cathedral, has been appointed National Worship Development Officer by the Archbishops‟ Council of the Church of England. Peter will start his new job in July, and will be working with the Liturgical Commission in this newly- created post to promote good practice in the preparation and leading of worship. The main focus of the role will be leading the development of a co-ordinated programme of training and development for worship leaders, including the preparation and production of suitable resources. Support for ‘A Place of Refuge’ The United Nations High Commission for Refugees has welcomed „A Place of Refuge - a positive approach to asylum seekers and refugees in the UK’, published by the Church of England‟s Mission and Public Affairs Council. They sent their 'heartfelt thanks for…your report A Place of Refuge which communicates with great clarity the desperate situations faced by refugees and asylum seekers forced to flee their lives and homes in search of sanctuary. UNHCR particularly appreciates the Church's commitment to challenging negative stereotypes and unwarranted associations, often created and perpetuated by the media…” A Place of Refuge is available in .pdf format on the Church of England website, is published by Church House Publishing, priced £5.99, and is available from all Christian bookshops and Church House Bookshop, 31 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BN, tel. 020-7898 1300, e-mail bookshop@c-of- e.org.uk <mailto:email@example.com>, or on the web at: www.chbookshop.co.uk <http://www.chbookshop.co.uk> (mail order available). Communications training The following Communications courses are being held at Church House, Westminster, in coming weeks: Further details 020 7898 1465 or http://www.commstraining.cofe.anglican.org Desktop Publishing - May 10th - £120 - give your magazine or newsletter a makeover with this one-day workshop on Microsoft Publisher. Communications in Cathedrals and High-Profile Churches - May 18th - £140 - explore the key issues involved in internal and external communications, learn how to develop good media relations and meet the needs of your visitors, with this one-day workshop. Introduction to PowerPoint - June 1st - £120 - learn how to design your own illustrated and professional presentation. Advanced PowerPoint - June 28th - £120 - create an interactive presentation using animation, sound and video. Introduction to Radio Interviews - July 5th - £120 - through practical experiences of being interviewed, develop the skills to ensure that the audience hears what you intend to say. Writing for Publication - July 6th - £120 - a practical day‟s training looking at clear and creative writing techniques, with a particular emphasis on news.