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View from the Vicarage

October 2015

David Druitt writes:

As many of you will be aware, the Dedham Ecclesiastical Lectureship Trust (The Trust) are, along with the Duchy Of Lancaster, the patrons of the living in Dedham and following Gerard’s departure in January The Trust assumed this role on the alternate basis.

The Trustees feel it is important that Parishioners understand what has been happening since January and also what is going to happen in the next few months regarding the vacancy we have for a Vicar & Lecturer.

In late April The Trust and the PCC received a letter from the Bishop of Colchester advising us that the Colchester Area Mission & Pastoral Committee were going to recommend to the Bishop of Chelmsford that the "rights of presentation" that The Trust has, as patron, to present a candidate(s) to the PCC to be the next incumbent, be suspended for a period of 5 years with the right to renew this suspension for further periods if deemed necessary.

Suspension is a legal device that is used when the Deanery that we are part of, have identified a local need for some sort of pastoral re-organisation of parishes. This should be on the back of a clear and published Deanery plan, which we understand is in the process of being produced, but we have not seen a copy of the plan as yet.

The Trust has taken advice regarding the legality of the proposed suspension and has written to the Bishop of Colchester outlining our concerns about it and proposing a possible way ahead which will be discussed with the Bishop and other Diocesan staff at a meeting which is being held on the 1st October.

The Trust does however have an obligation under its Governing document to appoint a suitably qualified communicant member of the Church of England to the office of Lecturer during any period when there is no Vicar or Priest-in-Charge of Dedham and we have advised the Bishop that we will do this if we do not make satisfactory progress on a replacement Vicar & Lecturer.

I would plan to provide further updates on the progress we are making in future editions of the Parish Magazine, but in the meantime please do not hesitate to contact either myself or either of the Church Wardens, Richard Hopkins and Quinlan Terry, if there are any matters relating to this topic that you would like to discuss.

David Druitt – Chairman, The Lectureship Trust.

The Vicar
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