Diocesan Synod unanimously approves vision themes and priorities

Bishop Mark presenting his vision themes and priorities in May

A momentous milestone was reached on Saturday, 17 June, when the Diocesan Synod, representing members from across the diocese, unanimously voted in favour of Bishop Mark's proposals for a new vision for the Church in the Diocese of Chester.

The agreement reached by the Synod is the result of an extensive consultation and discernment process that spanned several months and is the first vision process of its kind for a generation in the Diocese of Chester. 

Bishop Mark says: "It is such a privilege to be part of a Diocese like Chester with a clear focus on serving all of the 1.65 million people who live and work in this area. We have the best news to share together in signs of Christ’s hope in all of our communities."

Bishop Mark presented his vision themes and priorities and outlined the seven key things that "we are hearing" as well as the four specific priorities that God is calling us to. These fundamental priorities will underpin the future work of the Church in the Diocese of Chester in the years to come.

He also revealed a strapline that will accompany the vision: "Together in Christ, Sharing Hope".

What are we hearing? 

1. That we believe in the Gospel
2. That we believe in the local and seek transformation
3. That we care about the environment locally and globally
4. That we want to engage young people and the 'disconnected'
5. That we want to do bigger/better/bolder things together...simply
6. That the 1.5m people in our diocese matter
7. That we need to plant new communities of faith 

What is God calling us to?

1. Growing, braver, fuller faith
2. Blessing 1.5m lives, one life at a time
3. Transformative loving service (in practice) 
4. Engaged locally, working together in loving generosity

Diocesan Synod's agreement concludes the vision development phase, Casting the Net Wide, a 9-month-long consultation process across the diocese.

There will now be a period of discussion and planning as Bishop Mark and his senior team begin to consider in detail the strategic plan that will help enable the whole diocese to deliver and implement the vision at different levels. 

Bishop Mark first outlined his vision at an event held at Chester Cathedral in May. You can watch a recording of the service and read a summary of that event here. The event was notable for its technical achievement as people contributed to and watched the service via live video links from four different locations around the diocese.

What is expected to happen next?

  • Summer 2023 – Interviews are expected to be held to appoint the Strategic Change Programme Director who will lead us through the delivery and implementation phase. Take a look at the vacancy here
  • Late 2023 – Strategic plans will be communicated and resources will be made available to help parishes articulate the vision locally.
  • Early 2024 – The first strategic plans are implemented and reviewed. 
Page last updated: Wednesday 21st June 2023 9:29 AM
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