Convocation 2022 – Summary of Proceedings

It was good to be able to meet in person and to enjoy the hospitality at The Hayes Conference Centre from Monday 9th May to Wednesday 11th May 2022. The Bishop Primus, the Rt Rev’d Dr John Fenwick was in the Chair and the Rev’d Robert Leone, as Convocation Chaplain, framed each session with prayer.  In attendance were 13 Clergy, 20 Lay and 8 visitors.

The Bishop Primus declared that Dr Robert Stephen had been elected Convocation Secretary and General Secretary for the next twelve months.

Memorials of past members of Convocation were offered to the meeting as follows: Mrs Gloria Muttanayagam (Christ Church, Harlesden); Mr George Dunn (Christ Church, Teddington)

Greeting were received from Her Majesty, the Queen and from the Presiding Bishop of the Reformed Episcopal Church, the Most Rev’d Ray Sutton. Greetings were also exchanged with the Churches in Brazil and Germany.

A motion was presented to Convocation:
‘That Convocation uphold and cherish the wonderful history and heritage of the FCE by adhering to its principles and the Rubrics in our prayer book and that any change or amendment be done through our democratic process by the elected members of Convocation.’

Proposed by Norma Clarkson, People’s Warden, St George’s, Blackburn. 
Seconded by Marlene Parker,  Minister’s Warden, St George’s, Blackburn.

A. Gives thanks for the wonderful history and heritage of the FCE and the place of the Book of Common Prayer within it;
B. As we seek to rebuild after the pandemic, we ask that General Council, and the Doctrine & Worship and Constitution & Canons Committees, consider what worship texts and styles might be appropriate and, when necessary refer to the Constitutions and Canons Committee and to report on progress to the 2023 Convocation.

The following officers were elected by Convocation:

Bishop Primus
The Rt Rev’d Dr John Fenwick was re-elected as Bishop Primus.

General Treasurer
Mr Bill Clements

General Registrar
Mrs Natalie Stenström

Missionary Secretary
This post remains with the General Secretary at this present time.

Book Room Steward
The Denominational Office is the keeper and distributor of the Book Room material.

Denominational Safeguarding Officer
The Rev’d Mark Spiers

Mrs Natalie Stenström

Convocation Stewards
The Rev’d Mark Spiers and Mr Stephen Lawson

Convocation Organiser
Mrs Natalie Stenström

Election of Committees

Standing Committees
The General Council ex officio Officers are: The Bishops, the General Secretary, the Treasurer, the Registrar, the Secretaries and Treasurers of the dioceses.

General Council
From the Northern Diocesan Synod:
The Rev’d Anthony Roberts, and the Rev’d Geoffrey Andow.
From the Southern Diocesan Synod:
The Rev’d Jabson Watson, the Rev’d Mark Spiers, Miss Lesley Secker, Mrs Joy Sahadevan and Mrs Natalie Stenström.

Doctrine and Worship
The Rev’d Mark Spiers, The Rev’d Geoffrey Andow, The Rev’d Robert Wilson and Miss Lesley Secker.

Constitution and Canons
The Rev’d Dr Jabson Watson, the Rev’d Dr Mark Gretason, the Rev’d Robert Wilson, Mrs Margaret Cassidy and Miss Lesley Secker.

Mr Colin Mills, Mrs Elaine Wilson, Mr Werner Alberts and Mrs Margaret Cassidy.

Special Committees
The following are ex officio members on the Special Committees: The Bishops and the General Secretary.

Publications Committee
Mrs Natalie Stenström, the Rev’d Robert Wilson, the Rev’d Dr Jabson Watson and Mr Bill Clements. 

Home Mission & Development Fund
The Rev’d Mark Spiers, Mrs Margaret Cassidy and Mr Colin Mills.

The Associate congregation of St Abdias of Susa, meeting in Sheffield, brought greetings from the congregation established on the 27th February 2022.  The vision includes reaching Afghan people.  Four members of the group, including their Pastor, Karin Novi, who gave personal testimony, addressed Convocation.  Convocation received the presentation very positively and some questions were asked, including issues regarding the persecution of Christians in Iran and the difficulties of those who may not have genuine conversions to Christianity.

Bishop Primus introduced Bishop Alan Hawkins, Coadjutor Bishop in the Diocese of Christ our Hope, Chief Operating Officer of the Anglican Church in North America and Church Planting Officer of GAFCON, who led an initial teaching session.

Bishop Primus welcomed Bishop Alan Hawkins to a second session and to introduce group discussions, beginning with Bible Study in break-out group work and then feedback based on Acts 11:19-27. 

During the break, Natalie Stenström and the Rev’d Mark Spiers offered thanks to Bishop Paul for his service as General Secretary and a gift of flowers were given.  Bishop Paul offered a generous and selfless response.

Bishop Alan Hawkins observed that his goal in attending Convocation was to be an encourager and to bring encouragement.  As a follower of Jesus, the body, the Church, is a beautiful thing.  There are hurtful things that make the Church fragile, but it is a beautiful thing.  Four questions (from the Church Historian, Rodney Stark). The Church in its day:

  1. Out-loved its culture;
  2. Outthought the culture;
  3. Outlived the culture; and
  4. Outlasted the culture.

How do we do that in our day? 

Bishop Alan was thanked for his contribution to Convocation.

Date and Place of Convocation 2023

Convocation 2023 will be held at The Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick, Derbyshire, from Monday 22nd May to Wednesday 24th May.

Mrs Natalie Stenström presented gifts to those who had contributed to Convocation.  Special thanks were given to Mrs Norma Clarkson, retiring as Convocation Pianist.

Miss Lesley Secker presented a Thank You Card to Bishop Paul Hunt as a further expression of gratitude for his service as General Secretary.

Following the established custom, Convocation approved the minutes in the final session.


God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.

C. S. Lewis

Press forward. Do not stop, do not linger in your journey, but strive for the mark set before you. Fight the good fight of faith, and God will give you spiritual mercies.

George Whitefield

It is also our apostolic mission to enable all our people to develop into effective ambassadors of Christ in the Church and in the world.

Bishop John Fenwick

Being a Christian is more than just an instantaneous conversion – it is a daily process whereby you grow to be more and more like Christ.

Billy Graham