Welcome to the Benefice of the Piddle Valley, Hilton and Ansty, Melcombe Horsey and Cheselbourne.
The benefice is in vacancy at the moment. We are maintaining regular worship in our churches through the good graces of visiting clergy, licensed ministers and the of the churchwardens and lay members of our congregations for which we are extremely grateful. There has been some disruption to our regular worship so we would ask you to view our monthly schedule of services https://piddlevalleybenefice.com/services-timetable/
for up to date information:
As Fr Roger Butcher wrote
“Dear Friends, Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
Over the last few years, I have wrestled with the call that God is calling me to a catholic sacramental ministry within the Church of England. I have listened to much godly advice from many and had to wrestle with my conscience, please be assured there has been much prayer.
Recently I was interviewed for the position of vicar at ‘The Abbey Church of St Mary the Virgin, Nuneaton’. Such a high profile position inevitably attracts quality candidates and I was honoured to be chosen for selection.
Three bishops and the Abbey Churchwardens have validated my calling to this catholic parish, therefore I tender my resignation as your incumbent, I will continue to work my notice and to take holiday due.
Please pray for me – as I pray for you -and for the benefice as you seek a new incumbent.
Fr. Roger & Ginny
3rd October 2021″
Below is the copy of the email sent to the Acting Bishop of Salisbury, Bishop Karen, Sherborne
I have recently been interviewed for the position of vicar at the Abbey Church, St Mary, Nuneaton. Such a high-profile position inevitably attracts quality candidates and I was honoured to be chosen for selection.
The +Coventry, +Warwick and +Ebbsfleet with the Abbey Churchwardens have confirmed my calling to the above parish. I am joyful for new beginnings in the Anglo-Catholic movement, however with a great deal of sadness I intend to tender my resignation from my incumbency on Sunday 3rd October 2021; to work 3 months’ notice, minus holidays, with a view of licensing in early January.
I have wrestled with this decision and with much prayer believe God is calling me to a catholic sacramental ministry, in a society parish. I have listened to much godly advice from many to reach this decision as well as wrestled with my conscience and there has been much prayer. I am grateful to those who disagree with me and I will continue to work with those who disagree, albeit in a new context. May I take this opportunity to share with you an observation of the growing proclivity in our shared conversations, towards an understanding that the individual holds their red line. I do not share this individualistic viewpoint, as it is contrary to ordination vows and the authority of the Bishop.
The decision to resign from my incumbency and chaplaincies has been very hard. The relationships created over the last 14 years and the last 6 years as an incumbent run wide and deep in our diocese. Further resignations will follow from Ginny and me. Ginny will resign as tent manager and I will resign as assistant chaplain from the Great Dorset Steam Fair; and both as school governors. My police chaplaincy should relocate.
Please be assured that I am not leaving for any other reason than to say ‘yes’ to God’s present call and invitation, and not saying ‘no’ to what I have experienced in the wider church and the deanery. There has been much gaslighting in the deanery on the subject of reducing stipends, this sad behaviour has not influenced my decision to leave. I am most grateful for all those who have prayed for me during such discernment to answer God’s call.
My commitment to the Church of England remains steadfast to fight for faithfulness and my new post will be centred upon a catholic mission, in a society parish, in the diocese of Coventry, to which I have been called.
I am grateful for your episcopal pastoral care and for the many blessings God has granted me.
From the Church Wardens, and all those who attend our six churches we would like to offer you a warm welcome.
Church is more than a building! It is a living breathing community of people who come together who seek. The Benefice is made up of many seekers from different denominations who support their local church and each other, this diversity is held within the baptism of the one Lord, in which the spiritual doors have opened into a relationship with God.
Being committed to that spiritual journey is to undertake the self assessment of what separates us from God – we can push Him away, we can close the door on Him however, with God’s forgiveness, an open heart and mind and with the assistance of each other we can draw closer to Him, – the one who gives us life.
All are welcome!
For God so loved the word that he sent his only Son Jesus Christ. – John 3:16
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:1
The Benefice takes its responsibilities surrounding the safeguarding of children, young people, and adults who may be at risk very seriously, and works in partnership with the Diocese of Salisbury to ensure that we work in accordance with best practice at all times.
Please view the Parish Safeguarding Policy using the safeguarding tab above.
If you have any Safeguarding questions or concerns you can contact our Benefice Safeguarding Officer, Mrs Nettie Drake on 01258 881116
Alternatively you can contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Advisers,
- Mrs Suzy Futcher – Monday (all day), Tuesday (all day) and Wednesday AM
Contact Mobile No: 07500 664800
- Mr Jem Carter – Wedneday PM, Thursday and Friday
Contact Mobile No: 07489 857888
Email contact (For both Jem and Suzy) : firstname.lastname@example.org
Dorset Council Social Services:
Adult – 01305 221016
Children – 01305 228558
(Updated 3rd February 2021)