New Bishop of St Germans aims to be 'hope-bringer' to families in need

Published 23 March 2013
The Reverend Christopher Goldsmith with wife Ellie

The Reverend Christopher Goldsmith has been appointed as the new Bishop of St Germans.

He will be installed as bishop by Archbishop Justin Welby at a service in Southwark Cathedral at 11am on Tuesda 14 May.

The Bishop of Truro, the Right Reverend Tim Thornton, praised Goldsmith for his "strong skills and gifts" in the areas of ministry development, leadership and coaching.

"We wanted particularly to have someone to come and nurture the leadership potential of our clergy in what is a rapidly evolving environment at a local community level. I believe that in Chris we have found someone who will offer much in this respect," said Bishop Thornton.

"Chris has shown, in his ministry so far, an engagement and commitment to people and a real sense in his own life of responding to the call of God.

"I also look forward to working closely with Chris as we move ahead with our priorities, which are about shaping ourselves to respond to the opportunities God gives us. I know too how much he will want to get out and about and learn from the context provided by firsthand experience."

Reverend Goldsmith said he was excited at the prospect of serving in a diocese with "deep spiritual roots".

However, he also acknowledged the present day challenges facing the region and the need for the church to step in and support families.

"[The diocese was] first formed by pioneering Celtic saints inspired by their own Christian faith. They have left their mark all over the landscape in place names, churches and traditions," he said.

"Yet despite being a county so rich in heritage and natural beauty, Cornwall today is also a place where many people face increasing deprivation.

"As a church we need to be the help and the 'hope-bringers' for these families and communities and to enable their voices be heard in the corridors of power."

He said local church leaders were "key" to this and that he would do everything he could to support clergy and lay ministers within the Diocese of Truro.

"Inspired by the example of Jesus himself, we shall continue to fulfil our calling to serve and to lead our congregations and communities in ways that nurture, enable and release others," he said.

"Here in the Diocese of Truro, God's people are rediscovering Christian discipleship as the 'Way of Life'. This is not something static and protected like an endangered species, but outgoing, receptive to all that is good and transforming through the love of Jesus Christ. I am delighted to be joining that journey."

Reverend Goldsmith was licensed as a Reader in 1984 and trained part-time for the ordained ministry on the North Thames Ministerial Training Course from 1997 to 2000.

He served his curacy at Pitsea with Nevendon, in Chelmsford Diocese from 2000 to 2004. Since 2004 he has been Vicar at Christ Church Warley and Saint Mary the Virgin Great Warley in the Diocese of Chelmsford.

The Bishop of Chelmsford, the Right Reverend Stephen Cottrell, described Reverend Goldsmith as a person of "great wisdom and ability".

"I rejoice that Chris's gifts will be used in the strategic leadership of the church and in the shared pastoral oversight of a diocese," he said.

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