Churchwardens... everything you ever wanted to know!

Churchwardens……everything you ever wanted to know!

Why have Churchwardens? What is their role? Who are your Churchwardens?

The office of Churchwarden dates from the 13th Century, and is thus one of the earliest forms of recognised lay ministry.

There are over 900 churchwardens in Salisbury Diocese. Each parish elects their churchwardens annually at an Annual Parochial Church Meeting. It is usual for a churchwarden to serve for 2 – 3 years. Each year, Churchwardens are officially sworn in as officers of the Bishop at an Archdeaconry Visitation Service.

At the Visitation service this year the following helpful definition of a Churchwarden was included.

Their role by Canon Law is to be foremost in representing lay people in cooperating with the incumbent; by example and precept to encourage parishioners in the practice of true religion; and to promote peace and unity among them.

As senior lay leaders with the Parochial Church Council they will lead them in their responsibilities for the fabric and furnishings of the parish church and, where there is a churchyard see that it is properly maintained. They must ensure that alterations and repairs are only done by authorisation through Faculty. They should ensure that the records of the church’s land and property are kept up to date.

With the help of God, and along with all the baptised, they are called to holiness of life, and to be persons of integrity, recognising their responsibility for the tasks entrusted to them.’

Over many years at St. Lawrence we have been blessed with dedicated and loyal churchwardens, who have carried out their responsibilities with care and diligence. At our APCM before Easter, Mr. Arnold Harrison stood down from his role as Churchwarden in order to take on the responsibility of Treasurer, due to Mr. Ashley Kemp moving away from the area. Arnold served in the role of Churchwarden for two years and fulfilled the role with wisdom and much goodwill.

Our churchwardens are currently:

     Mr Chris Lush  01722 324681 pittcairn@hotmail.co.uk

     Mrs Heather Balston 01722 411628 hbalston@gmail.com

As you can see, their role is varied and full. Please offer them your support and prayers as they carry out their tasks, alongside myself, other clergy colleagues and the PCC.

We are hugely grateful to them and a vast team of people who ensure our parish church is well maintained, welcoming with a sense of vision.

Rev’d Tessa Mann


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