Weekly News from the Diocese

Diocese of Monmouth Esgobaeth Mynwy

Bishop talks of a ‘Future with hope’ at ‘virtual’ Diocesan Conference Almost 130 people logged on to take part in our first ‘virtual’ Diocesan Conference.Working in a ‘hybrid’ format, speakers were live from the Cathedral, while members and observers watched from their homes.With chat and Q&A functions, the conference was still interactive – and feedback has been hugely positive!While the back-drop may have looked stark in comparison with previous years, there were definite positives in the financial and environmental savings of more than 100 people not having to get in their cars and travel to the conference.Following opening worship and reports from the Standing Committee and Parsonage Board, the financial health of the diocese was explained by Chair of the Diocesan Board of Finance, Peter Lea.He said: “At the end of March with churches closed and virtually all parish income stopped, what was to happen?“What did happen was that new forms of worship were developed almost over-night. new means of keeping in touch as a church community were found and on top of that the whole of the church worked together in a way that I have never seen before. the message from day one was ‘we are all in this together.’”He thanked parishes and Ministry Areas for continuing to pay their share, even during these incredibly challenging economic times. He described their commitment as ‘remarkable’.He also added: “In a situation which is changing almost daily, it is difficult to predict the financial outcome for 2020. What I can tell you is that the board is committed to supporting ministry areas for the last quarter of the year.”These challenging times that we find ourselves in, also framed the presidential address by The Right Reverend Cherry Vann, Bishop of Monmouth.In an energising and empowering speech, she likened the current situation to that of centuries ago when God’s people were exiled, taken away from God’s house. But rather than longing to go back, God told them to build houses, plant gardens, get married and multiply.The words God spoke to them through the prophet Jeremiah are these:
 “For I know the plans I have for you”, says the Lord, “plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.”
As Bishop Cherry explains, “We may not have been exiled…. but we are living in strange times, navigating our way as best we can in unfamiliar territory….“God invites us to build, plan and nourish ourselves, to get on with living and praying, not just for ourselves but for the welfare of the world around us, and above all, to trust in Him for our future.”Against this ‘back cloth’ Bishop Cherry highlighted her priorities for the coming years – establishing Ministry Areas, Discipleship and Stewardship.She explains; “Ministry Areas will establish the framework, within which we can develop and invest in our life and work, our mission and ministry, our witness and service.”She then reflects on two aspects of our Christian life that are foundational to the hopeful future that God promises us. The first is to remember who we are, that is discipleship. The second is to remember that all that we are and all that we have belongs to God – that’s stewardship.“We need to remember who we are and whose we are… to be true to our calling and become the people God calls us to be.”

Read Bishop Cherry’s full address here, or watch it here.Live-streamed Services & Reflections: Watch Bishop Cherry’s Tuesday reflection here.

Please note: There will not be a reflection next week.
Reflections will resume on Tuesday 3rd November 

Join a Sunday Eucharist from the Cathedral here.Updated Guidance – Fire Break Lockdown
Guidance from the Church in Wales about the closure of churches over the firebreak lockdown can be found here.A message from Bishop Cherry: Buildings close; Church continues Once again, we find ourselves having to close our buildings for public worship and private prayer. I am aware that this will be a terrible blow to many who have found comfort and solace in being able to sit in a church, worship with others and receive the sacrament. But many have become proficient in live-streaming and continuing the life and worship of the Church on various digital platforms which is hugely encouraging. At the same time, contact and fellowship with those who don’t have access to the internet is also very well embedded in most if not all of the communities we serve. By God’s grace we will continue to be present and faithful, witnessing to his love and compassion.
 Archbishop urges Wales to be patient during firebreak lockdown
 You can read the Archbishop’s full statement on The Church in Wales website.DBS check service goes fully digital
People applying to work in the Church in Wales, either as employees or volunteers, will benefit from a faster and more efficient service as our Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check system becomes fully digital.
The Church in Wales is phasing out paper applications for DBS checks following the success of its online digital system. Digital applications have proved to be far quicker and more convenient, both for those applying for checks and for those processing them, particularly during the COVID pandemic. The move to a fully online system will ensure the process is future proofed.
The final day for paper applications to be accepted for processing is November 30. As part of the new system, our DBS helpline will continue to be available for those who need advice about what level of DBS they need.
All information, including the application form and helpline address, can be found on the Church in Wales website here:
https://www.churchinwales.org.uk/en/clergy-and-members/disclosure-and-barring-service-dbs/Eco Church Survey

Monmouth Diocese is committed to becoming an Eco Diocese, we’d love to hear your thoughts.

Please click on the image to enlargePlease complete the survey.

Contact archdeacon.gwentvalleys@cinw.org.uk for more information about the Diocesan Eco Group.Bible SundayThe 25th of October is Bible Sunday. Bible Society have created a range of free, easy-to-use resources to help you celebrate with your church. Available in English and Welsh, whether you’re looking for sermon resources, specially written prayers or activities for children.
Click here to view them.Last Session in our Autumn CMD SeriesPlease click on the image to enlargeBeing Ministers in the New Normal An Autumn series of webinars from Diocese of Monmouth, 
for clergy, lay ministers and any others involved in ministry. 
Each webinar will be repeated on Tuesday afternoons from 2pm-3pm, and on Thursday evenings 7.30pm-8.30pm. They will only last an hour, but include reflections from speakers within the Diocese, the opportunity for small group discussion, and to bring together feedback and ideas with the Diocesan Team. Virtual worship and online presidency — 3rd / 5th November Speaker: James Henley Book a place: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/webinar-virtual-worship-and-online-presidency-registration-120527287361  St Padarn’s Safeguarding TrainingThe training is in two parts, Part 1 & Part 2, you must attend both parts to complete the course. The sessions last approx. 2-2.5 hours.
There is a new online booking system, to book, click on the relevant link then complete the required details on the registration form. When you have submitted the form and your request has been approved you will receive a confirmation email containing your Zooms links.PART 1    

Wednesday 4th November – 14:00 – Click to Register for Part 1 04/11/2020

Friday 6th November – 10:00 – Click to Register for Part 1 06/11/2020

Wednesday 11th November – 18:00 – Click to Register for Part 1 11/11/2020

PART 2    

Thursday 19th November – 10:00 – Click to Register for Part 2 19/11/2020

Wednesday 25th November – 14:00 – Click to Register for Part 2 25/11/2020

Thursday 26th November – 18:00 – Click to Register for Part 2 26/11/2020Healing and Reconciliation Conference – 7th NovPlease click on the image to enlarge.Register here:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/healing-reconciliation-conference-registration-125542796885St Padarn’s Christmas WebinarsSt Padarn’s are pleased to share that there will be a Christmas Webinar Series in November to help us prepare for the upcoming Christmas season.
The first webinar of the series will be on the 9th November at 2pm and is called ‘Christmas in your community: bringing comfort and joy’. Sandra Millar is back with us and she will share creative and practical ideas about how to make Christmas memorable in and beyond the church, with a focus on the possible, looking at how social media, digital, domestic and church spaces can work together.  
The second part of this series will be on the 16th November at 2pm and is called ‘Christmas Reimagined’. As churches right across Wales are having to re-imagine what their traditional Christmas services and ministry will look like this year, we will be looking to share many more practical ideas to encourage and inspire us as we prepare for this very special season.  
You can register for your place as well as view any previous webinars you may have missed (including handouts) at: https://www.stpadarns.ac.uk/en/ministry/ministerial-support-hub/digital-ministry-webinars/.Evangelism & Discipleship Webinar
Christmas in your Community: Bringing Comfort and Joy
Thursday November 12th, 9.30-10.30 amSandra Millar (Life Events and Welcome) and Emma Buchan (Thy Kingdom Come) will share creative and practical ideas about how to make Christmas memorable in and beyond the church, with a focus on the possible, working alongside the national digital campaign and resources. There will be space to share your ideas too.
Please click here to reserve your place

To find out more about this and other Evangelism and Discipleship webinars,
please click hereFor more information and to get the link find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/monmouthpioneers
or email matt@cyncoedministryarea.org.uk

Open to all pioneers or those exploring what that may mean to them. Annual Returns
The final deadline for Annual Returns is now the 30th of November.
This includes,
Membership Return
Finance Return
Churchwardens Fabric Report
A copy of your independently examined/audited 2019 Accounts
Diocesan Database Return

Although the official deadline has been delayed we would appreciate having the data as soon as possible.
Please do not take any unnecessary health risks when completing the returns.

Please contact Libby if you have any questions or require any assistance.
07508 801511.

Thank-you to all the churches who have already completed their returns.Re-opening Buildings Grant

There is still money available through our re-opening grant scheme. You could be awarded up to £100 towards the cost of making your church buildings safe to re-open.
Please contact Libby for more information
07508 801511
 Children, Families & Young Peoples Resources
 Cyncoed Ministry Area have Sunday School activities available here.St Teilos High School are providing weekly services for young people, you can catch up with previous services and watch this week’s here.Charles Williams Church in Wales Primary School have lots of child friendly services available here.Care for the Family
Care for the Family’s Kitchen Table Project is supporting churches and their work with families, watch their video here.
And find more of their resources here.Scripture Union
Scripture Union have a variety of resources available for children and young people, including daily craft and prayer activities and mental health resources. Check them out here.There are lots more amazing resources for children and families available on our website here.For a downloadable and printable version of this email please click here.

You can find the one-stop-shop for all you need to know and this week’s updates here.