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Community and Public Affairs

  • Community Affairs-+

    A team of people in the diocese seek to resource parishes and deaneries in their growing engagement with the local community. This provides the context for the developing ministry and mission within a particular church, so engagement with it is a vital component of our understanding and helps us put our faith and discipleship into action in that context and beyond.

    The team consists of those who hold a portfolio or responsibility within the diocese for a particular part of that local outreach into the community. An example might be Sally Fogden, Chaplain to Agriculture, who also maintains connections into rural issues via the Rural Coffee Caravan. Another might be Charles Jenkin, Advisor on Inter-faith, or Paul Tyler, responsible within the North Bury Team for Community Development. All team members endeavour to respond to requests from local churches for advice, information and ideas for an effective ministry and mission. Kathleen Ben Rabha, the Diocesan Officer for Community Affairs, is able to respond to any request from parishes under the ‘Growing in Influence’ strand of the Growing in God programme, and can offer consultancy and ideas on how a church continues to interact with its immediate surroundings and also beyond it.

    All this work of engagement-

    1. Feeds into intercessions and worship,
    2. provides opportunities to each and every Christian disciple to put their faith into action, and
    3. gives information to help shape the witness of their local church to the local community.

    Resource people
    Agriculture - Sally Fogden
    Community Development - Paul Tyler and Kathleen Ben Rabha.
    Deaf chaplaincy - Vacant
    Dementia - Kathleen Ben Rabha
    Disability - Jonathan Olanczuk
    Domestic Violence - Paul Daltry and Kathleen Ben Rabha
    Environment - Vacant
    Gypsies, Travellers and Roma - Betty Wells
    Higher Education Chaplaincy - Tracey Allen
    Hospice Chaplaincy - Sharon Connell
    Housing Association Chaplaincy - Jan Fowler
    Inter-faith dialogue - Charles Jenkin
    Mental Health chaplaincy - Kate Holmes
    Mental Health-general - Kathleen Ben Rabha
    Mission to Seafarers - Vacant
    Mothers Union
    Action and Outreach - Sandra Griffths
    Away from it all holidays -Beryl Mee
    Prison chaplaincy - Tony Fowler
    World Development - Carol Mansell and Richard Stainer

    Please contact Kathleen Ben Rabha on kathleen.benrabha@cofesuffolk.org to obtain contain details for the above people. 

  • Public Affairs-+

    This is the diocese having dialogue with the county organisations and structures and in some cases with national bodies as well, on all matters that affect the lives and circumstances of all the people who live here. As officers and staff from the diocese, we seek to draw on the insights of our faith to have conversations with the County Council, the Police, the Health Service, the Criminal Justice system and all the providers of services, about the impact they have on individuals and communities.

    This dialogue is undertaken on behalf of parishes and deaneries, so that they are made aware of how intended changes, for example, in the provision of social care to the most vulnerable in our communities, will be done, given the present requirement to save money. Caring as we do jointly for all the people who live here, the dialogue may take the form of a challenge, or a seeking for partnership, or acting as a critical friend, asking questions. We are all aware of the social issues we face as a society. Our faith teaches us to ‘seek the welfare of the city’ and to pray for those in leadership over us, but it also teaches us to challenge injustice and respond with others to human need by loving service. (Marks of Mission 3 and 4).

    We are able to have this dialogue because of the witness of all our local churches. Our presence as the Church of England in every community within our diocese, our connection with other denominations, with local people, and our standing within communities, all combine to provide the necessary credibility and integrity. Because of this local interaction, we can have conversation with all kinds of county bodies and in so doing, inform our parishes and deaneries of changing priorities, developments and policies, that affect people in our communities and therefore impact on the ministry and mission of the local churches.

Resources


External Links


Contact

To connect with the work of Community or Public Affairs, please contact:
Kathleen Ben Rabha, Diocesan Officer for Community Affairs, via kathleen.benrabha@cofesuffolk.org

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