Our annual diocesan synod is usually an opportunity to physically meet and reflect on key points of our life as a dioceses. Obviously, due to the pandemic this was not possible this year.
Every Church of Ireland diocesan synod consists of the bishop, the beneficed and licensed clergy of the diocese, and elected lay members from parishes from across the dioceses.
This year 77 members of our Diocesan Synod met by Video Conference, at 11am on Saturday 21 November. The technology enabling it to happen was organised by our Diocesan Secretary, Karen Seaman.
Even though we were not able to meet in person we were still able to transact the necessary business for the good governance of our dioceses. We were also able to catch up on news and developments in Meath and Kildare, as well as plans for the future.
The synod expressed their appreciation for the contribution of Rhonda Willoughby, a member of Naas Union of parishes, who has served as an Honorary Lay Secretary. Rhonda decided to step down from the role. Mark Potterton, who has been a member of Diocesan Council and Finance & Glebes for a number of years and a member of Mullingar Union of Parishes, was elected to replace her as Honorary Lay Secretary.
In her Presidential Address Bishop Storey talked of ‘confident uncertainty’, in light of Covid-19. She said that no-one had a template for the pandemic of 2020. With all of the psychological and spiritual challenges that the pandemic has brought, she expressed the belief that the dioceses could not just survive this extraordinary time, but also to thrive into the future.
Reports presented to members of Synod included:
- A Financial Report and Statement of accounts.
- Diocesan Board of Education.
Kevin Bowers was elected as Lay member of the Representative Church Body, on behalf of Meath and Kildare.
Luke Hawkins, who recently took up the joint post of Diocesan Youth officer and Chaplain to Wilson’s Hospital, as introduced to members of synod. He talked about plans for youth events and confirmations in the new year, dependant on government Codid-19 guidelines.