News by email Donate

Suggestions

Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

Stephen Cottrell Archbishop of York PA Peter Byrne header2.jpg
stephen cottrell aby synod thumb.png
Church News

Archbishop of York says he'll listen to young people and urges C of E to 'learn afresh how to share the gospel'

by Cara Bentley

The Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, has called on members of the Church of England to "learn afresh how to share the gospel in the world" and said that he will listen to the voices of young people. 

In his first public address since his confirmation as Archbishop, he spoke at the Church assembly's online gathering of how difficult the lockdown has been and the situation it places the church in. 

Archbishop Stephen said it had been a time where people have experienced a "stripping back of our lives", bringing hardship but also clarity and a renewed focus on God.

"Do not misunderstand me," he said.

"I hugely miss our church buildings and our liturgy, just as I also miss going to the cinema and eating in restaurants, or just having a coffee; and I grieve for the fact that I was not able to say goodbye to the diocese of Chelmsford in the ways I wanted, nor am I able to hug my new grandson without donning a mask; and I cry out for the pain of all those socially distanced funerals, the thousands of people who have died alone, the baptisms, weddings and ordinations that have had to be postponed; the economic misery which is around the corner and the devastating impact of this pandemic upon the whole life of our world.

"But neither can I deny, that it has forced me to encounter things about myself which I had allowed to remain hidden behind the security of the things I have had to relinquish."

He spoke about a group he is leading to discern a strategy for the Church for the next decade and said nothing has been decided yet but that propositions will be made at Synod next year to be discussed. 

He added that the Church’s voice remains “overly-dominated” by people who are “usually white, usually male, usually with a certain sort of education, usually over 60”.

"At the moment I am engaged in a very wide ranging discussion with people from all across the church but with a particular determination to draw in and listen to the voices of younger Christians and those whose voices are not usually so easily heard in Church," he added.

He concluded: "So, dear General Synod, as we enter some turbulent times and some challenging decisions, we are just going to have to learn again how to love one another, love the world and love God so that, both individually and collectively, we can be the place where God is revealed.

"We've not always been very good at this.

"We have allowed ourselves to become tribal and divided.

"We have allowed secondary things to obscure our belonging to each other.

"The Holy Spirit reveals Christ in us; and through us may we learn afresh how to share the gospel in the world." 

 

Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

A Monthly Gift Of £8 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the UK is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of £8 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Set up a monthly gift

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

Connect

Donate

Donate