Around 40 people in groups from Droitwich, Evesham, Old Hill and Oldswinford have received a special certificate from the Bishop of Dudley, Graham Usher, marking the completion of a course designed to help them relate their Christian faith to their own life and locality.

The groups took the Bishop’s Certificate course over 12 months with the support of local tutors. It covered subjects such as Christian faith and the Creeds, the Old and New Testaments, Pentecost and the Holy Spirit, discipleship and living as Christians with people of other faiths.

Bishop Graham addressed the candidates before presenting them with their certificates. He offered warm congratulations to all those receiving certificates and said: “You should celebrate your amazing commitment in completing this course. Thank you for being so open to encounter God in Jesus, for allowing yourself to be changed and your faith to be deepened through doing the course. Being a Christian is all about being prepared to go out to serve one another and the community in which you live and to be God’s living stones, precious in his sight.”

Evesham Bishop's Certificate groupJenny Law is a member of St Peter’s Church in Bengeworth and completed the course with a group in Evesham. She said: “It was wonderful and really contextualised what was going on in the bible. All the history was fascinating. The more we got to know each other in our group, the more we were able to share together – I would highly recommend it.”

Droitwich Bishop's Certificate groupJane Baker is from the Benefice of Stoke Prior, Wychbold and Upton Warren and was part of the Droitwich group. She said: “I found it interesting and challenging and it was great to get to know new people. The different topics gave us different insights into the bible and it was good to understand scripture in more depth.”

Old Hill Bishop's Certificate GroupHelen Stone from St Peter’s Church in Lapal was part of the group which met in Old Hill. She said: “It was definitely worthwhile and interesting. The course was well presented and I enjoyed being a group and discussing different topics each week. I have been reading through the Old Testament alongside completing the course and it was great to understand how this relates to the New Testament.”

Oldswinford Bishop's certificate groupAlex Beevers and Mike Blaxland are both from St Mary’s Church in Oldswinford. They said: “It was very good, interesting and challenging. We really enjoyed the opportunity to discuss the bible with a group of like-minded people each week. It’s been very much a pilgrimage and has helped with our Christian journeys.” 

See photos from the evening


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