Bishop Richards calls for critical action

The Bishop of Warrington has warned that clergy must not be complacent and lull themselves into "believing we don't have to act, or change".

Bishop of Warrington calls for critical action to prevent clergy from having to "clear their desks"

The Bishop of Warrington, The Rt Rev Richard Blackburn has warned that clergy must not be complacent and lull themselves into "a false sense of security of believing we don't have to act, or to change".

Speaking recently at the licensing of John Williams as curate for St Nicholas, Liverpool Parish Church, the Bishop stated the Gospel compelled him to take risks saying "playing safe is not what I seek of him" and asking his congregation not to "trap him into some past pattern of ministry or some preconceived notion of how he should be your priest."

Speaking on Luke 16: 1-13 the Bishop stated that Jesus' story underlined the "importance of acting speedily" and stating that "in the life of the Church we can lull oursleves into a false sense of security of believing we don't have to act, or to change because we play a 'long game'".

The Bishop's message comes as the Diocese of Liverpool works on responding to the challenge to grow issued by Bishop James last November.

The Bishop concluded by stating "these are difficult times. We live in a post-Christian age and the gentle attrition of decline has afflicted all our churches for the best part of a century. But we must remember that the veneer of Christianity was often very thin. So we must never despair of ourselves or of our Church. However, as we grapple with the demands of changing patterns of ministry, we have to ask searching and urgent questions about the sort of Christian communities we want to promote."

And he asked whether we had a sense of urgency for "if not, we shall all be clearing our desks sooner then we might have imagined