Bishop’s Commission for Mission

 The Diocese of Winchester have launched their Autumn Term BCM Programme.  If you are a lay person who is involved in ministry in your local church, or perhaps feeling a call from God to become more involved in ministry in your local church then BCM training might be for you. They aim to equip and inspire lay people to become more confident in their service within their church and community, growing in understanding that you are indeed a valuable part of the mission of God in His world.

This autumn term there are four BCM programmes (the opening and closing sessions and perhaps one mid term as ‘in person’ training in locations in Winchester.  All other sessions will be held online.

BCM Creation Care for those who want to help their churches take more steps towards caring for God’s Creation. 

New – BCM Children & Youth Ministry for those who are involved in leading groups in any form of youth or childrens ministry.

BCM Prayer Champions for those who feel a calling to see their churches become ‘a house of prayer’ and want to help others grow in confidence in prayer. 

BCM Worship for those with a heart to lead others into the presence of God. 

Full details are available at

A Message from the Bishop of Southampton

Dear Friends,

I wanted to contact you all directly with an important update. Bishop Tim has informed me that he will be stepping back from his role as Bishop of Winchester for the next six weeks, so that he can focus on discussions about future leadership and governance reform in the Diocese. I fully support his decision. Bishop Tim and Lambeth Palace have requested that, over this period, I temporarily take responsibility for the Diocese and I shall be working with the team at Wolvesey to ensure full continuity.

I realise that, even before this news, this has been an enormously challenging 15 months for us all as a diocese and as a church – as it has been for the entire country. On behalf of Bishop Tim and the team, I wanted to thank you once again for all you have been doing for your parishes and your communities, in such trying circumstances. As the country begins to emerge tentatively from the long shadow of COVID-19, our anticipation continues to be tempered by necessary caution. We will, of course, continue to be led by Government and National Church of England guidance, so that we can all stay as safe as possible.

Finally, during these next weeks, every Monday morning at 9am from 24th May, I will be offering Diocesan Prayer on Zoom, with the exception of the Bank Holiday. You are very welcome to join me if you would like to do so, and further details will be circulated in due course.

With my prayers for you all,

Bishop Debbie.

P.S., Since that letter was written, we have heard that Bishop David of Basingstoke is also stepping back for the same time.  Please continue to pray for the Diocese, and for all involved in these discussions.  Gary.

CONSULTATION : Avon Valley Churches becoming one Parish

The four PCCs together with congregations voted to become a single parish with one PCC before Christmas. The consultation process has been progressing in the background and now everyone has the opportunity to view the Draft Pastoral Scheme drawn up by the Winchester Diocesan Mission and Pastoral Committee. Details of the Draft Scheme, a Glossary of Terms and the way in which representation can be made to the Church Commissioners can be found below :  

Draft Scheme

Glossary of Terms

Form P76 – how to make representation to Church Commissioners

Death of HRH, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

You will have heard the sad news of the death of HRH, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.  Where we have them, our flags are at half-mast, and bells will be rung muffled where possible.  Books of Condolence: there will be a link to an on-line Book of Condolence, and a number of books in larger centres – to be announced.  Parish Churches are urged not to open Books of Condolence, as there is nowhere to store them, and they will be destroyed.  There are opportunities to light candles and write prayers in our open Churches.  We are likely to arrange a special Service on the day before the Funeral, and to show the Funeral in Church for those who would like to gather for that occasion.  Further details will be available over the coming days.  Gary.