5,000 Shrovetide figures invade Ashbourne parish church!

st oswald clay figures 6895 full res

St Oswald's in Ashbourne is now home to 5,000 clay figures, made by schoolchildren and visitors as part of the 'Our Game' project in the town.

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Susan Jones Writes

The summer is almost over and many of us will be thinking about a new term. Schools, Universities and Colleges will already be gearing up for a new term. I have worked most of

my ministry around academic terms and so September for me has always been about beginning again and starting a new year.


As we start to think about a new academic year, the Diocese is beginning a new partnership with the All Saints Centre for Mission and Ministry, based in Warrington. Over the past year

we have been working with All Saints to develop a learning programme for all God’s people. This is a programme of study that will enable lay people, in their discipleship, to learn

alongside those training for Reader Ministry and Ordained Ministry in the Church. This development is in line with the paper, produced by the Church of England’s Archbishops’

Council, Setting God’s People Free. The report encourages diocese:

 to affirm and enable the complementary roles and vocations of clergy and of lay people, grounded in our common baptism - not to blur or undermine these distinctions.

 to see confident involvement, engagement and leadership of lay people wherever they are called to serve - not to devise lay alternatives to clergy. 


Over the next few months we will be developing learning hubs in the deaneries and we will be appointing two people to work in the Archdeaconries, funded by the Transition Funding, for a fixed period of time. They will be part of the School of Formation and will work with others to develop the vision of the diocese and the report Setting God’s People Free.

As a Diocese we are committed to setting God’s people free as we affirm that God calls all of us to live out God’s mission for the world. In the words from Setting God’s People


The Church, as the whole people of God, clergy and laity, gathered and sent, are charged with continuing Christ’s priestly work of blessing, mediation and reconciliation on behalf of the whole of humanity, to bear witness to, and participate in the mission of God (Archbishops’ Council, 2017 p 1).


Please do look out for the learning hubs and for further information about learning and training

please go to http://www.derby.anglican.org/school-of-formation.html .


Susan Jones

The Diocese of Derby

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