At yesterday’s Mass in Sevenoaks a special announcement was made: Monsignor Keith Newton has asked Deacon Robert Smith to move from the parish of St. John the baptist in Westerham to Saint Anselm’s in Pembury. This is good news indeed.
He is asked to make this move with Mr. Roy Cavey. Roy is in formational training for the diaconate. As part of his formation Roy was made lector earlier this year, by the Ordinary, at our confirmation service here in Pembury. He is pictured above cutting a cake with Sean, a recent confirmation candidate, on that wonderful day.
The move ensures it is the Ordinariate which benefits from the ministry of these men and that both remain rooted in its own culture and tradition. As part of their new ministry they have been given oversight of the fledgling group in Sevenoaks. And to ensure they can build that group up and pastor to it effectively they will split their time between our own parish in Pembury and the parish of St. Thomas in Sevenoaks where the Sevenoaks Ordinariate now gathers. The Ordinariate is most grateful for the support of Fr. David Gibbons, parish priest there.
And so our Minster model for the West Kent Area continues to grow. God certainly has a sense of humour; for that is three mass centres, three priests, one permanent deacon, a deacon in formation and two seminarians sent from the group. Whatever next I wonder? This isn’t quite what gentle village ministry is meant to be about!!