Colin Podmore takes over Forward in Faith

Dr Colin Podmore, Clerk to the General Synod of the Church of England, has been appointed as the new director of Forward in Faith.

He replaces Stephen Parkinson, who is retiring after 19 years at the helm of the group, which opposes women bishops.

FiF Chairman Bishop Jonathan Baker commented: "It is thanks to the tireless work of Stephen Parkinson that Forward in Faith has been able to make such an impact on the life of the Church of England.

"As its Director, he has played a pivotal role in building Forward in Faith into the distinctive and dynamic organisation that it is today. It is a tribute to Stephen’s achievement that we have been able to attract so distinguished a successor."

Dr Podmore has been on the staff of the General Synod since 1988 and has served as Deputy Secretary of the Council for Christian Unity, Secretary of the House of Clergy, Secretary of the Liturgical Commission, and Secretary of the Dioceses Commission.

He is also the Director of the Central Secretariat of the Archbishops' Council and Director of Ecumenical Relations.

Welcoming him to his new role, Bishop Baker said: "Colin Podmore will bring to the role a wealth of experience at senior level in the Church of England. He is passionate about the faith and order of the catholic Church as received by the Church of England and has long been committed to the visible unity of the one Church of Jesus Christ."

News of Dr Podmore's appointment to Forward in Faith was also welcomed by the Bishop of Chichester, Dr Martin Warner.

Dr Warner said: “It is very good to know that Dr Colin Podmore is to be the new Director of Forward in Faith. I worked briefly with Colin on the newly formed Dioceses Commission which benefitted tremendously from his ability to bring together administrative and theological skills.

"He has a deep love of the Church of England and knowledge of its workings. These gifts will be indispensible in helping traditionalist Catholics to remain engaged and committed to the mission in which we all share.”

Mr Parkinson commented: "It has been my privilege to serve the Church of England in a number of capacities for over 30 years and most particularly as Director of Forward in Faith since 1993.

"Leaving Forward in Faith after so many years will naturally be a wrench, but I am delighted to know that I will be leaving it in such capable hands."