Robert has been a priest in the Diocese of Worcester since he was ordained in 1980 and is currently Director of Development.

Robert will be well-known throughout the Diocese of Worcester, having served as Vicar of St. Francis in Dudley for eight years and then as Rector of St. Barnabas with Christ Church in Worcester for fourteen years. He was also Rural Dean of Worcester East, is a Canon of Worcester Cathedral and served as one of the diocesan representatives on General Synod, the Church's governing body for ten years. He was appointed Director of Development in 2006 where he has been responsible for training of clergy and laity throughout the diocese, establishing the popular Authorised Lay Minister programme, which has trained over 300 people.

Bishop John said: "Robert's appointment was made with the unanimous recommendation of the advisory group set up to find the next Archdeacon of Worcester. He is a very gifted a well-loved priest who is very mission-minded and fulfils all the criteria of the role. At a time when we've had a number of senior appointments from outside the diocese, Robert's appointment will help provide stability as we move forwards as Kingdom People."

Robert said: "I am very much looking forward to this new role within the diocese. As Director of Development, I've got to know clergy and laity from all corners of Worcestershire and Dudley and know that there are some great initiatives happening as our churches reach out to their local communities. It'll be great to get more involved in these at a local level, and be able to provide support and encouragement across the parishes of the Worcester Archdeaconry."

Robert moved into the Diocese from just over the border in Birmingham when he was young and was confirmed in St John's, Halesowen in 1966. He studied languages at University before he trained for ordination at Ripon College, Cuddesdon and, as a fluent German speaker, is very involved in the diocesan partnership with Magdeburg and the Church of England's Meissen Agreement with the German Protestant Church. In his spare time Robert enjoys the odd pint of beer, walking, singing in a choir and music-making.

Robert will be installed as the next Archdeacon of Worcester during Evensong at the Cathedral on Sunday 16 November at 4pm.

ENDS

The Diocese of Worcester is one of 42 dioceses in the Church of England. It covers an area of 671 square miles and includes parishes in the County of Worcestershire, the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, and a few parishes in northern Gloucestershire, south east Wolverhampton and Sandwell.

From: Sam Setchell, Press Officer for the Diocese of Worcester and the Bishop of Worcester.

Tel: 01905 20537 Mobile: 07852 302516
Email: ssetchell@cofe-worcester.org.uk