The new church year got off to a great start in Erdington on Advent Sunday 1 December. Over 150 people gathered with Bishop David to launch the new Deanery of Aston and Sutton Coldfield and to welcome a new full time Area Dean, Lay Chair and Deanery Warden of Readers.
The congregation were blessed with fine music from Wylde Green Church Choir and the band of Aston Parish, alongside a ‘holy soaking’ in memory of God’s love for all as the Bishop sprinkled them with baptismal water. Representatives from across the new deanery gathered to celebrate this next step of faithfulness to God’s vision for Birmingham. Bishop David commented, ‘What a great day with so many people and places represented and so much ministry in evidence, we can look forward to the future with the team God has gathered!’.
Chris, the new warden of readers, said, ‘It feels so special and blessed’. The team were welcomed by the Lord Mayor of Birmingham and the Mayor of Sutton Coldfield as well as representatives from the deanery and wider Diocese. And of course, there were the essentials of church life: tea, cake, and fizzy drink! The new full-time dean Ann Richardson summed up the event, ‘It was great to meet so many new colleagues lay and ordained, to be together in the centre of our new deanery and to see the start of a new phase of strategic and spiritual growth together, thanks be to God!’