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Priest inducted, Suffolk churches boost, Wisbech concert

Latest news from across the Diocese of East Anglia includes a priest’s induction in Newmarket, a £1.8m fund to help historic Suffolk churches and a Jewish concert in Wisbech.


Fr Christopher Smith was installed as Parish Priest of Our Lady Immaculate and St Etheldreda Newmarket with Our Lady Immaculate and St Philip Neri, Kirtling, during a Mass on November 20.

Fr Christopher was previously parish priest of St Mark’s Ipswich. There were plenty of parishioners to welcome him with smiles, warm applause and a sumptuous bring-and-share and plenty of well-wishers from his previous parish, a number of ecumenical guests and all eight parish priests from the other parishes of the large southern deanery of St Edmund.

In his homily, Bishop Alan spoke of the way the Church had been shaken by recent events and that the necessary renewal could only take place if we focused on the person of Jesus Christ and became ever more communities of prayer.

In a moving central section to the Mass, Fr Christopher knelt before the Bishop and, with his hand firmly on the book of the gospels, affirmed his faith in the creeds and in the teachings of the scriptures and of the Church and committed himself to service of the Word, the Sacraments and to witness in the world.

Pictured above is Fr Christopher Smith flanked by Bishop Alan and Deacon John Morrill.


Suffolk has been selected, along with Manchester, to take part in a £1.8 million pilot project to improve the care of historic churches, with a first workshop taking place in Sudbury next month, and Catholic churches eligible to take part.

The 18-month pilot scheme, launched this autumn, was announced by the culture department in response to a report on the sustainability of English churches and cathedrals – the Taylor Review.

The main elements of the Suffolk pilot include: a £500,000 minor repairs fund, with grants of up to £10,000 available for individual projects which cost £12,000 or less; workshops on maintenance and involving the wider local community in congregations’ efforts to look after their churches; the appointment of a fabric support officer, Tom Kȕpper, to help advise on caring for buildings, and a community support adviser, Laura Emmins, to help congregations involve the wider local community with their churches.  

The first of eight planned workshops is due to take place in Sudbury on December 10. Called “A Stitch in Time” the free one-day seminar will look at why maintenance and small repairs matter. Places may be booked online at bit.ly/2yZisRL or by phoning Amelia on 07917 060 536. Mr Kupper’s email for queries about buildings is Thomas.Kupper@historicengland.org.uk


A concert by the Cambridgeshire Jewish Choir, organised by the Wisbech Interfaith Forum, has raised over £500 to help refugees in the county

The concert was enjoyed by over 100 people at St Peter & St Paul Church in Wisbech.

Bharat Khetani from Wisbech Interfaith Forum, said it was a great success and Brian Keegan from Peterborough, the Diocese of East Anglia lead on inter-religious matters   said: “Excellent, informative, a new experience and enjoyable.”

Pictured are, from the left, Sean Finlay from Our Lady and St Charles, Wisbech, Mike Levy from the Jewish Choir and Bharat Khetani from Wisbech Interfaith Forum.

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