The Salisbury-Évreux Diocesan Twinning
For 30 years the Diocese of Salisbury has had an active, mutual and well-developed link (now a twinning) with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Évreux in Upper Normandy.
The Diocese of Évreux comprises the Cathedral city of Évreux (about an hour by train north from Paris), a number of smaller market towns and many villages and hamlets spread over extensive agricultural areas.
In many ways the nature of the Diocese of Évreux is similar to that of Salisbury.
The Catholic Church in France is the established or parochial church – roughly equivalent to the Church of England in this country.
Thus the churches in both dioceses have many common points of reference related to pastoral work, rural ministry, lay training, work with Children and Young People and the role of and deployment of clergy.
Not surprisingly this has resulted in much exchange, discussion and debate in the many years we have shared this link.
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Over the years the details have changed, bishops have come and gone (in one case, the Bishop of Évreux of the time, Jacques Gaillot, was sacked by the Pope for his radical views!), membership of our committee has altered and specific foci for meetings have reflected current matters or issues facing both dioceses.
At present the Évreux Committee hosts or is hosted in France during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Usually these visits are coupled to a theme (rural ministry, lay training, Pastoral work, Church and the environment for example)
In addition there are 3 active parish twinning projects involving Queen Thorne, Bridport and the Whitton Team.
In this context real friendships have grown up and sustain a relaxed and open approach to dialogue and learning.
The Évreux Committee
The Evreux Committee is responsible to the Board of Church and Society and its primary task is to develop the Partnership Link between the Roman Catholic Diocese of Evreux in France and the Anglican Diocese of Salisbury, along the guidelines devised by the Partnership for World Mission for Companion Links within the Anglican Communion, and taking note of the ecumenical issues involved.
The Evreux Link was initiated by the Board of Ministry in order to foster closer links between the dioceses. It now forms one of Salisbury’s three links with Churches overseas, the others being those with the Episcopal Church of the Sudan and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia.
Who are the Committee?
The Evreux Committee consists of volunteers drawn from both Episcopal areas.
Some speak French!
The Committee is chaired by the Ven Paul Taylor, Archdeacon of Sherborne:
firstname.lastname@example.org, 01258 859110
The Secretary is Mrs Jill Minchin:
Canon Peter Ball, Whitton/ Notre Dame du Bois link:
Canon Nigel Cumming:
Mrs Jane Dibdin, Bridport/ Rumois link:
The Revd Candice Marcus, Whitton/ Notre Dame du Bois link:
The Revd Joanna Naish:
Canon Harold Stephens:
email@example.com, 01305 268434
The Revd James Menzies
The Revd Eleanor Rance
Bishop Christian Nourrichard
Bishop Christian is the present Bishop of Évreux and has become a real supporter of our twinning. We all see real opportunities to learn from each other and to continue to build up mutual trust, understanding and empathy. In October 2009 Bishop Christian was made a Sarum Canon.
As a further token of this friendship we were delighted to welcome Bishop Christian to Salisbury for the celebrations surrounding the ending of Bishop David’s ministry as our diocesan Bishop. With 7 others from his diocese, Bishop Christian was present for the final services and ceremonies for Bishop David’s departure.
Our current project involves learning from Évreux in relation to their understanding of what it means to be Church in the rural setting and about provision for lay training for ministry within this context. A study has been made, resulting in a paper presented to the Bishop’s Council and to Diocesan Synod. This will contribute to our developing thinking in these areas.